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2009 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 - The 'Glass Menagerie

Dec 16, 2009
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Never Enough
George Ragula
Newark, NJ

'66 C2 Coupe
'95 C4 ZR-1
'08 C6 Z06
2009 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1

My obsession with Vettes started as a kid, when I saw one roar down the street while looking out of an apartment window in Brooklyn, New York. That was 1956. Since then I've owned several Corvettes and have become an avid enthusiast. My interest in the marque has led me to put this collection together. It includes a frame-off-restored '66 427 Milano Maroon coupe, a '95 Aqua ZR-1, an '08 Victory Red Z06, and, the most recent addition, an '09 Jetstream Blue ZR1-all in stock condition. That's a total combined horsepower of nearly 2,000 under one garage roof! They're all beautiful in their own ways, with awesome handling and power when you get to the newer breed. I can't get enough.

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Extreme Jake
Ronnie and Kelly Kunkel
Vaughn, MT

'77 C3 Coupe

We bought this Corvette after it had been in storage for 11 years. For its restoration, our friend Gayle Sumner pulled the engine and installed a new 350. I removed the luggage rack, the antenna, and the factory-keyed alarm system for a smoother look. I also customized the car with an '82 custom front end, a 5-inch cowl hood, "Lambo" doors, Atomic Orange paint, and a black interior. A friend and artist, Mike Storrusten (Great Falls, MT), airbrushed the large "Extreme Jake" skull on the hood and a spine down the back. He added the "true flame" effect around the skull, spine, and custom center console inside the car.

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View To A Thrill
Tony and Cindy Roslund
Carlsbad, CA
'99 C5 Convertible

When my lovely wife and I got married many years ago, we were an all-Vette family. She drove a '76 T-top, and I drove a '67 coupe. It's surprising the amount of things the two of us and the cars had in common. We held out as long as we could, but when our firstborn started to develop a hunchback from being confined to the limited seating of the midyear coupe, ergonomics won out. With the kids grown up, my search for another Vette ended with this perfect '99 automatic convertible, which is great for cruising the 101 Freeway.

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Apple Of Our Eyes
Jim and Valerie Wickham
Manchester, NH

'90 C4 Coupe

We've owned our Vette a little over a year and are the second owners. It has about 57,000 miles and is in excellent condition. Even in the apple orchard, the deep-red paint grabs attention. The car is solid to the core and a bushel of fun to drive. It's been a great pick for us.

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Topless Show
Butch and Donna Chaffer
Sparks, NV

'60 C1
'05 C6 Convertible

Here are our two Corvettes. The '05 is a museum-delivery Daytona Sunset Orange Z51 convertible with a Vararam cold-air intake, a Corsa Sport exhaust, a Breathless Performance shifter, and a DiabloSport Predator tune. We've made several cross-country trips with it (the National Corvette Museum always included) and have more planned.
We found our '60 Vette in 1993, in the form of an ex-drag car in need of a major overhaul. It now sports a Porsche Guards Red exterior, a ZZ4 engine, a Tremec five-speed, a 9-inch rear, front discs, and an aluminum radiator. It's lowered 3/4-inch in back and 11/2 inches in front. It's never trailered and has about 38,000 miles on it.
Both cars also do their share of track time, as all good Corvettes should.

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Black, Black, No Trade Back
Dan and Diane Silva
Oroville, CA

'09 C6 Coupe
When we bought our Corvette, which we call "Black Beauty," the dealer asked us if we were the types to drive it or leave it garaged. After reading this, you'll be able to tell for yourself. We took delivery in March 2009 and broke it in for the first 500-1,000 miles. Then we hit the road to start our trip to Route 66 and the National Corvette Museum. Then, it was on to Ohio, Virginia, Texas, the Grand Canyon, the Painted Desert, the Petrified Forest, and to visit family and friends-a total of more than 7,000 miles in 24 days! We've had our Corvette for five months now and have more than 10,000 miles on it. (One of the more surprising things to happen on the trip was figuring out that our gas mileage was better than 27 mpg.) Black Beauty is mostly stock, with some dealer add-ons such as a tinted rear window, a mesh grille, and a Mild-2-Wild exhaust system. We're looking forward to ordering our next Black Beauty, hopefully a ZR1 with museum delivery.

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Drag Doll
Phil Erikson
Caldwell, ID

'69 C3 Convertible

This is a '69 four-speed convertible that I built up as an L88/Mako Shark II tribute. The one-piece tilt front end is strongly reminiscent of the Mako Shark II show car of the mid-'60s, while the 461ci big-block (with 553 hp and 575 lb-ft at the crank) echoes the rare L88 race monsters of 1967-1969. The drivetrain has been strengthened, and a DragVette six-link ties the independent rear suspension together. VB&P front and rear springs and shocks lower the car 11/4 inches, and its Boyd Coddington 17x8 Junk Yard Dogs are mounted on 255/50ZR17 Nitto tires. My best quarter-mile time in it is 12.75 at 114.5 mph on street tires, but it's a winner at car shows too: Last summer it came home with three trophies.

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Hard-Luck Hardtop
Mark Taub
Houston, TX

'70 C3 Coupe

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After I lost my perfect '74 to a fire, I bought a basket case, numbers-matching '70 coupe. It took a three-year frame-off restoration, but it turned out great. The original, low-compression 350 engine was yanked, then bored and stroked to 383 ci. An Edelbrock aluminum dual-plane intake manifold was ground and painted to look OEM; it's fed by a Holley 750-cfm carburetor. In addition, I have the MSD ignition hidden out of sight. Though the picture shows the engine with a custom ram-air system installed, I usually show my Vette with its original air-cleaner assembly, to maintain that 1970s vibe.

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