The Chevy Corvette received a mild restyling for the 1961 model year. The nine heavy teeth in the grille were replaced with a bright grille with horizontal bars (the thick chrome horizontal bar that held the heavy teeth remained), the headlight bezels were painted body color, the rear end was given an upswept “duck tail” treatment, and there were now two round taillights per side, a look that would stick with the Corvette through the sixth generation.
The Chevy Corvette interior received some modifications, as the transmission tunnel was narrowed, door sills evolved into a single piece, and the courtesy light, sun shades, and parking brake light became standard equipment. Windshield washers and a temperature-controlled radiator fan also became standard fare.
Our feature 1961 Chevy Corvette is anything but standard fare. Described as painted in Roman Red (true first-generation Corvette Roman Red looks a bit more like tomato soup), this Corvette restomod is powered by a GM LS6 V8 backed by a Tremec five-speed manual transmission. The original X-frame is long gone, replaced by an SRIII tube frame chassis, and the fully independent polished rear suspension has been adopted from a fourth generation Corvette. The interior is a custom beige and red affair.
The bright red exterior of the Chevy Corvette presents well. Chrome bumpers and trim look to have been re-plated, and the stainless is nicely polished. The builder must have preferred the chrome headlight bezels of the previous year, as this Corvette wears chrome ones. Stock painted steel wheels with polished stainless hubcaps have been swapped for polished five-spoke alloys wrapped in low-profile performance rubber. Modern Corvette power disc brakes with drilled and slotted thirteen-inch rotors make sure this Corvette will stop on a dime. A stock black convertible top helps keep the weather out.
The Chevy Corvette restomod’s interior has been covered in a custom hand-stitched beige leather seats with red carpets and dash. Beneath the carpet and door panels, a layer of Hushmat has been applied to keep heat and noise at bay. The factory Wonderbar radio has been modified to be iPod compatible. The heat and vent controls have been replaced with color-matched modern climate control. This Corvette is equipped with air conditioning, power brakes, power steering, power windows, and an electric parking brake. The red and beige theme continues into the trunk, with bright trim and a Corvette cross flags emblem.
Under the Chevy Corvette restomod’s hood beautifully finished engine bay that is home to the GM LS6 V8. The LS6 breathes through a highly-polished stainless steel split intake that originates in front of the aluminum radiator. The LS6 wears a plastic Corvette engine cover that looks to have come from a fifth-generation Vette. The LS6 sends spent gasses out through a ceramic coated exhaust. Moving the power from the engine to the wheels is a Tremec five-speed manual trans.
This intriguing Chevy Corvette Restomod convertible will cross the Mecum Auctions block at their Orlando, Florida sale taking place July 6th through the 9th.