corvette web magazine

1966 corvette

Big Block Dreaming

When talking about mid-years nothing excites the imagination or garners more attention than the legendary Chevy big block motor. True examples of this mammoth power plant are far and few between. Unfortunately there are probably more big block mid year Corvettes on the roads today than there were in 1967. The almost endemic practice of installing the venerable 427 "Rat Motor" in cars with a lesser pedigree has become an art form.

The real problem arises when sellers either wittingly or unwittingly proclaim that their car is a genuine numbers matching example of a big block. Installers have become very adept at swapping a 427 into a car that was born with a 327 base engine. Sophisticated machining techniques that include high tech computer guided laser etching can duplicate correct number designations on blocks, engine pads and other various locations that appraisers use to determine the validity of a Corvettes heritage.
1966 corvette
The gold standard for objectively determining a Corvettes pedigree has and continues to be the NCRS (National Corvette Restorers Society) methods for originality determination.  A car with the coveted NCRS "Top Flight" Certification will in most cases bring a higher sales premium than a car not as well endowed. 

That being said there is absolutely nothing wrong with a car that has been restored with what is referred to as a "period correct" engine. For instance a car that was that was originally equipped with a specific big block had a quality engine replacement that matched the exact year and specifications of the original engine. A purist will invariably scoff at the idea of a car that does not have every original nut and bolt on its accounting sheet.
1966 corvette
The reality is that the lines or a cars pedigree have become increasingly blurred in recent years. This can be seen with the recent surge in the popularity and valuations placed on classics that have undergone what is referred to as a "resto-mod' conversion. Classic Corvettes that have been upgraded to include modern drivetrains , interiors and electronics have become much more desirable to collectors for one simple reason, you can actually drive them. Resto-moded cars usually are adorned with a modern LS engine.
1966 corvette
The LS platform when transplanted into a classic offers extreme reliability, extreme power and decent gas mileage. The new breed of Corvette collectors value these attributes as they are not into turning wrenches on a weekly basis. The want a car that starts when they push the electronic button and can cruise all day without a whimper.
1966 corvette
We recently came across an outstanding example of a C2 classic that was retrofitted with a period correct big block 427 engine.  The l36 427/390 engine is a reliable powerhouse that was offered in the 1966 C2 Corvette. The car underwent a total restoration and is in outstanding near concourse condition. With only 56k miles the Marina Blue exterior and flawless blue leather interior will impress the most critical of purists.

As mentioned the period correct 427/390hp L36 has been totally rebuilt and restored to factory specifications.  The car is equipped with a 4speed manual, AC,PS,PB, am/fm, side exhaust, hard top, knock off wheels, teak steering wheel and a perfect rust free chassis.
The car is currently for sale and can be viewed at the Corvette and Classics marketplace page.

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