Buying Your First Corvette

More people are buying Corvettes than ever before. Their reasons for purchasing a Corvette can be: 1. For an Investment (they're not a real investment but better that a New Car)
2. Have a facination with cars and want precision in their ride
3. They have a need to drive a car that has a timelless design
. For some, it's daily transportation. For others, a Corvette will be a fixer-upper or perhaps a restoration project. Those with a healthy bank account may buy a completely restored Corvette with plans of showing it at Bloomington Gold or a major NCRS National or Regional event.
Whatever the reason, if you're a first- time buyer (or maybe you've owned one the past a), it pays to have a working knowledge of the mechanics of Corvette buying before you start.
In the past, buying an older Corvette was considered a investment. Every model year from 1953 right up to 1982 has some appreciation potential - (the 1953 to 1967 have more upside). A few years ago, a 435-horse '67 roadsters, L88s, '57 fuelies and other exotic Cor- vettes went ballistic and drew speculators and investors into the hobby. Those inexperienced in exotic car wheeling and dealing who jumped in because they thought these cars were gold-plated took serious hits, while the speculators made their money and exited as the bottom began dropping out. In today's market, the stakes are high and, for these exotic Corvettes, so are the prices. For the privileged, it's just another tax deduction. But for those of us in the cheap seats, there are still bargains on the majority of Corvettes out there.
If you're a first-time Corvette buyer, decide which car you want. If you've fallen in love with '67s, learn as much as you can before going out to find the right one. Invest in some of the many books that have been written by Cor- vette experts. These books illustrate the differences in the model years (changes that are quite subtle and can be missed by the novice), what options were avail- able, how to locate and decipher the VIN (Vehicle Identification Number), engine codes, build dates and other crypted information. Before you spent big bucks on your Vette check the Vin Tag and the engine stamp pad the PROOF IS HERE Not knowing where these codes are and how to read them could cost you BIG $$$$ dollars if you buy the wrong Corvette. When you inspect a possible purchase, have these reference books handy and use them like a Bible. The cost of your research materials is nothing and will easily be recouped when you sell.
You should go to Corvette shows, not just for the fun of going, but to build your knowledge. Go to judged shows or casual show-and-shine events and take notes on everything from the options to the smallest details. Watch the judges and see how carefully they inspect a Corvette. Join NCRS and get a "Judging Guide" for the car you want to buy. Talk to Corvette owners (they love to talk about their cars). They'll be more than happy to help you along. Ask about Corvettes for sale. You may find a fair deal though your Corvette club. If you want a correct "Real car I cannot over emphasise JOIN THE NCRS AND GET INVOLVED.
If you enter the Corvette hobby with the idea you can leverage your way to an L88, guess again. While some of us are born to deal and "flip cars", you're not the only one in the hobby motivated by greed. Remember there are always bigger fish in the sea and they have much sharp- er teeth.
Let's go back to that '67. As you narrow down on your search, you'll find there's a vast array of cars to chose from, and all cars are not equal. Just because it's advertised as a body-off restoration does not mean it's a great job. All so-called professional restorers are not, so be careful in your selection - ask Corvette owners who is good.
Bear in mind these 30 year old Corvettes, even with all those new parts and new paint will need work --- those cars back then enen required TLC.
Another Tip: Don't buy paint. A common mistake of many Corvette buy- ers is to buy a shiny paint job. First impressions may be very deceiving. You must carefully inspect any Corvette for any structural weaknesses and evidence of accidents - take a NCRS Master Judge. Beware of rusty frames, poor fitting or out-of-line panels. There's a reason for these problems. Remember that beauty is only skin deep but ugly can go clear to the frame. Some of the n older Corvette dealers are honest, but the emotional forces of a possible Corvette purchase can make a potential buyer vulnerable. Dealers are aware of this, and they tend to press until they get that sale. You won't think on whether you made the right decision as you're driving your Corvette home. The doubts will creep in just about the time the payment book arrives in the mail.
It can cost just about as much to restore an exotic Corvette as it can a Muscle car. If you are restoring a Corvette and trouble rears its ugly head, can you grin and bear it, or would you have to sell? If forced to sell, could you recoup your investment or make a profit? Gaining a solid knowledge of the "Correct Buying Procedure" --- of purchasing a Corvette will make you a smarter Corvette buyer. You want this to be a fun as well as profitable move; it will be -- if you are sure of your ground. Corvettes are fun toys as well as good investments. Be extremely careful- Join the NCRS especially if you are buying a Big Bucks - "Correct Corvette"