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Amazing Corvette C1 and C8 Assembly Line Pictures Taken 67 Years Apart


On their Twitter page this week, Chevrolet posted a picture of one of the first C8 Corvettes rolling off the assembly line. That sent us digging through our archives, as well as the GM Media Archives, and we discovered these amazing pictures of the 1953 Corvette on the Flint, Michigan, assembly line. According to the picture captions, these pictures were taken on June 30, 1953. Compare that with the picture of the C8 taken on February 3 from the Bowling Green Assembly Plant.

Soon, the first batch of 2020 Corvettes will be reaching Chevy dealership showrooms, and happy customers will be taking delivery of this highly anticipated, mid-engine C8 platform. I wouldn't mind being one of those people.

I'm not into new cars, so if I had the money and was forced to spend it on a new vehicle, I'd struggle with what to buy. Honestly, I'd rather buy a motorcycle instead and keep my old pickups running. The Corvette is different, though. I've written before that I have an affinity for these cars, especially the steel bumper C3s. My dad owned a Forest Green 1969 with the Tri-Power 427 and a four-speed before I was born, and I've spent many childhood hours perusing pictures of that car in my parents' old photo album, so Corvettes have been on my radar since I was a little ki

I remember being disappointed to see the Corvette get defanged as the C3 platform ran its course into the '80s, with tacked-on spoilers and wheezy-performing, low-compression small-blocks. The C4 was exciting by comparison, and I'd love to own (or even just drive) a ZR1 from that era so I could experience the overhead-cam LT5 engine. I wasn't a huge fan of the C5's looks, with the exception of the Z06, but I appreciate its step forward in performance with the rear-mounted transmission for better weight distribution and improved cabin room. I really liked the C6 design and got to see one up close as an employee here at the publishing company when the C6 Z06 was released. MotorTrend booked a shoot in our photo studio during my time as the studio manager, and its canary yellow paint blazed under our studio lights. Personally, I think the C7 is fussy looking, and I wish they kept the round, or roundish, taillights from the previous generation, but there's no denying the stellar performance of that platform.

It's ironic, then, that I've driven very few Corvettes in my life. I've only been a passenger in a C3, I've never driven a C4 or 5, and have had very limited time behind the wheel of a C6. I guess that's because most of my career has been with Car Craft, and Corvettes of any kind didn't fit very well into our editorial plan. Hopefully I can reverse that trend, because I'd love the chance to drive the C8. Feedback I've heard from MotorTrend's test drivers has been universally positive.

Rumors of a mid-engine version have swirled for more than 50 years, and several prototype cars have been built in that time. Seeing the assembly line pictures from Chevrolet, that rumor has finally become a reality. Plus, with the debut of the C8.R race car at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona, we can assume that an overhead-cam V-8 will be available in the road-going car in the near future. I'm hoping that version comes with a clutch pedal! Either way, the C8 is a car 67 years in the making. It's arguably the most highly anticipated Corvette since the car's introduction.

Source: John McGann; HotRod



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