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Three Corvettes to buy, sell, or hold

By any stretch of the imagination, the Chevrolet Corvette is a very, very popular car. With 66 years of production under its belt and well over 1.5 million sold, it’s one of those cars that’s impossible to ignore or forget.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.hagerty.com/articles-videos/articles/2019/05/02/corvettes-to-buy-sell-or-hold

I’ve had a red 1997 C5 since January 2006 and it was my daily driver until June 2018 when I replaced it with a silver 2004 Z06 with 43k miles on it. The '97 had 157k miles on it and needed to be retired to the backup role.

I paid $19,600 plus 5% buyer’s premium for the Z06 and it’s easily the best performance car I have ever owned. It’s in excellent condition and I’m happy to see prices moving up.

Porsche thought they knew what their traditional customers wanted in 1978…a high speed cross country road car…ignoring the iconic 911 with it’s quirky handling and slightly underpowered boxer engine…well…that did not encourage Porsche fans to saddle up for a complete change of chassis, interior and exterior styling with the 928…the same scenario might parallel the sales of the C8…a complete change from what the traditional Corvette buyer has gotten used to…the new C8 is interesting to look at but will it bolster sales or languish in the showrooms like a jilted bride…this might encourage increased values in all used Corvettes…by the way I own a 1988 928…a great car to look at but a maintenance guzzler to keep fit…

I bought my wife a 2003 Anniversary Edition convertible several years ago and it was one of the most reliable vehicles we ever owned. Other than regular fluid changes and a new battery I replaced after failing to keep it on a trickle charger for several months - we had no other issues ever.
The manual convertible top was as easy to put up as take down - usually in less than a minute.
And on road trips it routinely got 27-29 MPG on the highway and passed almost everything in front of us. And it had decent trunk space for a convertible as well.
Last but not least, the light tan/grey interior is much cooler on hot days than other Corvette interiors. That’s important if you live in the Southwest and like to drive with the top down.

I’ve got a 68 L-79 roadster all stock with a M-21 4 speed. Think I’m looking to sell? Hasn’t gone up in value as I was hoping.

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I’ve got a '72 454 4/spd fac a/c hard top car, tilt tele, leather, p/s. It’s a holder. Not the highest hp when stock but now it’s built up right and still original block. I think in another 10 years these will be wanted. Also have a '68 hard top 460hp built crate LS car. Doubt 68’s will ever go high, but it’s a sweet looking car and fast. '68 is worth keeping just because it’s such a unicorn year for C3.

We have owned many Corvettes in our lifetime but we really like our C4 which was purchased new in 1989 for my wife’s birthday. I get to drive it now as for her birthday this year she got a 2019 Grand Sport coupe. They share garage space as well.

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I love reading the Hagerty “Valuation Reports” and believe they are a “Valuable Tool” for those who buy, seek out “Classics” for their value and investment aspects; but “me”, well I buy my “Classics” simply because I like the car, or it brings back some cool memories. I’ve had “A to Z” cars, "A"lfa Romeo Spider to a Datsun “Z” 260, I currently have a sweet VW Beetle and recently picked up a sharp 1995 Corvette…why, well I love driving the “Bug”, brings back my shall I say “Long Hair Days” and the “Vette”, well hey, it’s a “Vette”.loweredvw

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I’ve owned 5 throughout the years- a rubber bumper C3, 2 steel bumper C3’s, a C5, and now a C2. None of mine have ever been “collectible”. The 77 was the only one I owned that still had it’s original engine when I bought it, and when I sold it… All the rest were NOM by the time I was done with them.
Whenever people tell me they are considering a Corvette for their first “optional” weekend car, I always try to stress the difference between a collectible car (where every rock chip becomes a value detractor), versus a “usable driver, that it going to hang onto its value” as an inflation hedge. In my opinion, the latter category is always going to provide the most enjoyment and satisfaction for the $$. Correct numbers, heavily documented mid-year and early C3 big block cars, early fuelie small block cars, 53’s, and the split window 63’s are always going to be the most collectible Corvettes from an investment perspective, but even the resale values on these cars ebb and flow with the tastes of the market. For me, it’s much more desirable to find a specific car that really grabs your fancy, runs well, drives smooth, straight and solid, and feels like a comfortable place to spend a few hours when you buckle into it… Then get out there and drive it, fearlessly.

One to buy, and two to sell. The C5 has now begun the paperweight conversion. GM has stopped supporting it per federal 10 year support law, and that includes making replacements available for ALL the specialized printed circuit boards that were produced JUST FOR THIS CAR. For example, the HVAC control stack inside is going out and is getting v hard to find. OK, nobody needs those things on a sports car. But how about the printed circuit board in the ABS controller? Lotta collectors of electronically-controlled cars are going to have their AW-SH*T moment in the coming years.

Stick to the sixties or earlier to collect. all that was needed to run and operate the car was a spark to the spark plugs. Easy to replace, 50 years on.

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I’ve had 17 Corvettes over the years, and the number would be much higher if I hadn’t landed on older models that I decided were keepers in recent years, plus if I hadn’t become terribly bored with current models. I have a split window that I could make a profit on, but I’d just have to take that money and go find another one. I like the car.

I have a ‘69 roadster that I enjoy the heck out of driving, but their resale has been flat or worse for some time. I agree on the sell advice on the ‘78. The cars are going nowhere.

As far as the C5s, the best thing I can say about them is they aren’t as bad as the unsellable paperweight C4. Neither are terrible cars per se, but they are uninspiring bars of soap. We bought a new ‘03 roadster and liked the car a lot. Fun, dependable, working air. It was a vanilla used car in no time, an Impala with 2 seats. I cannot imagine anyone buying a C5 and telling their friends about their new “Corvette.” Hate to say it, but Corvettes ended in 1982.

Nice cars, waaaayyyyy out of my budget.

My California-plated ‘C1Dream’ is a black and silver cove (custom painted) '62 Fuelie, the one I always wanted since riding in one in 1962. It took me 50-odd years but promise kept. I wouldn’t trade it for any later (or earlier) year Vette certainly not after '67. But that’s my bias. It’s a blast to drive, a multi-trophy-winner and head-turner driver that I love putting on the road where it belongs. As an investment, I’ve been offered considerably more that I paid for it six years ago, high five figures. ‘M’ is right: get the one that grabs your fancy and enjoy the heck out of it!

Interesting if not surprising. Have had a Corvette for probably 25 years off and on, and most recently purchased my dream C2. Maintained well for a weekend driver, I added period-correct aftermarket wheels (have orig equipment) and tires plus an aux. fan for hot August day show cruising. Would like to know what the value and suggestion whether to buy or sell a 1964. Also, what is the value difference if non-numbers matching? The prior owner claimed numbers matching 327 4 speed but I haven’t verified, not sure the best way to get this done - or the difference in $ evaluation. I know, it’s stupid, but I bought it based on looks/desire, not as an investment. Have verified the production and that it is the original Tuxedo black over red w/white top. 74K mi., if I’d sell what would market value be? Clean and all options work. (I purchased several ‘dream cars’ on a whim after a personal tragedy; Have sold the Lamborghini and 2 Porsches, this is my last remaining ‘fun’ car, but I am reluctantly considering sale). Any thoughts from you experts signed up for Hagerty chats would be appreciated!!

Well… how about a 2001 ZO6 for $100? Funny thing, the local car museum is raffling off a 2001 ZO6 and they haven’t even sold 200 tickets yet with only a few weeks remaining. With only 300 tickets to be sold, you would think it would have been a hot ticket item with such good odds but there is very little interest, at least locally.

Tim, I have a 64 that I am getting ready to sell and I have been told that it makes a big difference if #'s match but I don’t know how it affects the value. Is that 74K original miles or did you have the engine rebuilt, as I did, about 25 years ago? The Tuxedo Black looks great and I have never seen one in my area ever. I was hoping this article would mention 63-67 in the Buy/Sell topic.

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Y’all quit baggin on C4s. Second gen. C4s look good, are affordable and drive like a Phantom jet. Nothing worse than a 'vette snob.

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My “Paper weight” Bought it for enjoyment not investment!