He finished the tome's text in July 2011. Immediately afterwards, he flew to Detroit and travelled to the GM Media Archive. "I went through every photograph that GM had on the Corvette," Leffingwell remembers. "Some years--1953, 1963, 1968, 1969, and 1997-had more than 1,000 photos each."
Seven working days later, Leffingwell had amassed a shortlist of 1,500 Corvette photographs from the archives. His next challenge was to pare down the archival shots to the ones he could fit in the new book. "I knew Corvette Sixty Years was to contain 250 color photos and 150 in black and white. The problem was that I couldn't just fill the entire 256-page book with previously unpublished images of the very first year, or even just the solid-axle cars, so that initiated the editing challenge. Motorbooks wasn't going to let me add 500 pages and another 1,000 images to the specs for this book," he says.
Leffingwell recalls that approximately 300 of the book's 400 images came directly from the GM Archive. The others--such as a '69 L88 (the last L88 convertible), the one-of-one supercharged '53 Corvette, and the '55 Duntov mule--are modern photography of iconic Corvettes by himself and the book's co-photographer, David Newhardt.
"Corvette Sixty Years is a new historical appraisal of a well-known history," Leffingwell concludes. "Its collection of phenomenal images from the GM Media Archive, [along with] new photography, makes this the most exciting book-at least for me--that I've authored on the Corvette." Hopefully, VETTE readers will agree. Corvette Sixty Years will be available for pre-order on April 15, 2012, at www.motorbooks.com. It will be published in 10x12.25-inch hardback and retail for $50.