The 1963 Corvette introduced the Second Generation Corvette. It was also known as Chevrolet Corvette C2 and nick named “Sting Ray”. This generation extended for 5 years of production and was very famous for its new and innovative shapes. The 1963 model was the first year for a Corvette coupe and it featured a distinctive tapering rear deck (a feature that reappeared on the 1971 “Boat Tail” Buick Riviera) with, for 1963 only, a split rear window. The Sting Ray featured hidden headlamps, non-functional hood vents, and an independent rear suspension. The 1963 Corvette produced a maximum power of 360 HP featuring electronic ignition and the breakerless magnetic pulse-triggered Delcotronic.
In 1964, the maximum power of the engine was raised to 375 HP and the decorative hood vents were eliminated. Also, the rear split window was replaced by a full width rear window. This was the end of the very distinguished and unique split rear window.
The 1965 model included a four-wheel disc brakes, as was a “big block” engine option, the 425 HP 396 cu in (6.49 L) V8. Side exhaust pipes were also optional in 1965 and continued through 1967. The 396 cu in (6.49 L) option cost US$292.70 while the fuel injected 327 cu in (5.36 L) engine cost US$538.00. Few people could justify spending US$245.00 more for 50 bhp (37 kW) less, even if the FI cars offered optional bigger brakes not available on carbureted models. With only 771 fuel-injected cars built in 1965, Chevrolet discontinued the option the following year.
For 1966, Chevrolet introduced an even larger 427 cu in (7.00 L) Big Block version. Other options available on the C2 included the Wonderbar auto-tuning AM radio, AM-FM radio (mid-1963), air conditioning (late-1963), a telescopic steering wheel (1965), and headrests (1966). The Sting Ray’s independent rear suspension was successfully adapted for the new-for-1965 Chevrolet Corvair, which solved the quirky handling problems of that unique rear-engine compact.
In 1967, the Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray had modified fender vents, less ornamentation and the first use of all four taillights in red; back-up lamps were now rectangular, centrally located. 1967 had the first L88 engine option which produced 430 HP, but unofficial estimates stated that the actual output is 560 HP or more. This was the first model to introduce the triple double barrel carburetor of “Holley” brand also known as Tri-Power. Tri-Power was available on the 427 L89 (a $368 option, on top of the cost for the high-performance 427). The Sting Ray is one of the most distinguished and desired Corvettes of all time, with a great value in the enthusiasts and collectors market.
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