Corvette C1 According to General Motors, four-million people filed past the first Corvette to pay homage to it. Twenty thousand of these assured General Motors that yes, they would certainly buy a neat little sports car like the one on show. The mood in Detroit was jubilant. Chevrolet had gained an advantage over its competitors (neither Ford nor Chrysler had a sports car on the horizon—even Ford’s forthcoming Thunderbird couldn’t be classed as such) and appeared to be ready to spearhead a great American sports car revival. It was little wonder that management ordered the Corvette into production by the end of June, a bare six months after its Waldorf debut. There was talk of 20,000 a year being sold, though the projected sales for 1954 were later trimmed to 12,000; little did anyone suspect that it would take seven years for the Corvette’s total production to reach five figures. By the summer of 1953, the Corvette now safely in production, Chevrolet had no intention of trying to meet those 20,000 speculative orders all at once, or even to supply a car to every one of the marque’s 7,600 dealers.

The sporty interior of a 1950s Corvette.

10 Corvettes & The Muscle Car Revival

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