There’s a proverbial raft full of particularly interesting early Corvettes crossing the block at Mecum’s 2018 Indy Auction, and Vette magazine thought readers might like a sneak peek at LOT S 167 a 1963 split-window that’s up for bid on Saturday May 19.
In relationship to how many new Corvettes are produced each year in comparison to the number of Chevrolet passenger cars made any new Corvette can be considered a rare car. That said, in comparison to the number of new Corvettes manufactured yearly any C1, or C2 Corvette should be respected as a very rare car.
And then there’s the rarest of rare early Corvettes that were produced in only a handful of numbers, and that describes the 1 of 278 1963 Split-Window Corvette that is going to cross the block May 19, 2018 at the Mecum Auction in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Its not high-performance options that make this 1963 Split-Window Corvette rare it’s the luxury options it has that most Corvette buyers in 1963 shunned in preference to go-fast goodies. The year 1963 was not only the first year for the Sting Ray it was the first year for factory air-conditioning (Note A/C vents). The rarest and most luxurious option on this Corvette is RPO C60 air-conditioning that added $421.80 to the coupe’s $4,252 base price.
The first wave for luxury options to become available for the Corvette was in 1956 when Chevrolet had to step up its game against Ford’s personal luxury car the two-seater Thunderbird. The Corvette’s second wave arrived with the launch of the 1963 Sting Ray introducing power steering and power brakes as found on this example. Power brakes was a popular option as well as power steering with 3,336 Sting Rays equipped with power brakes and 3,063 with power steering. Under the hood is a 300 horsepower 327 mated with a Powerglide automatic transmission, and first year IRS (independent rear suspension).
“Teacher’s Pet” could be a feature title in Vette magazine for this 1963 split-window Corvette as it is optioned almost exactly as the Powerglide equipped Sting Rays two of my high school teachers drove in the mid-60s.