All Right, here we are just two days before the much-anticipated unveiling of the 2014 Corvette! We are about as excited as a 6-year-old kid on Christmas Eve, even though we are nearly certain that the leaked images we have seen are what the car looks like. Even if that’s the case, getting to learn all of the ins and outs of the car is enough to excite us.
So, as you know, we are checking out the top-25 Corvettes of all time and we already let you in on the bottom fifth of the list. Now we are set to let you in on numbers 19 through 15. Just like the bottom-fifth of the list, this one includes a few pace cars and we also get to see an extremely desirable model that also had a major design flaw that likely resulted in it being discontinued after only one year.
To find out which models landed on our list, click past the jump.
No. 19: 1978 Chevrolet Corvette Indy 500 Pace Car
The 1978 model year was a special one for the Corvette, as it was not only the sports car’s 25th birthday, but it also marked the first time that the model never paced the Indy 500. That’s right; of all the Indy 500 pace car Corvettes ever built, this was the first one. If you’re lucky enough to get your hands on one of the original 300 models, you also got a set of specially built Goodyear tires with the word “Corvette” printed on them.
What makes this super-desirable model fall so far down our list is the fact that each Corvette dealer sold one model, making the total produced a market-flooding 6,502 models. Short of the overproduction, this is one of the sexiest pace cars ever, due in part to the sheer simplicity of it.
No. 18: 1963 Chevrolet “Split Window” Corvette
One of the rarest, poorest-designed and most-desirable mass-produced Corvettes was the 1963 “Split Window” Corvette. It was called the “Split Window” because, well, the rear window was split into two pieces. This looked really cool, but blocked the driver’s vision and was quickly axed for the 1964 model year. Even the Corvette’s chief engineer, the famed Zora Arkus-Duntov, hated the split window design, but it somehow made it into production.
The split window model is likely the second most recognizable name in classic Corvettes next to the Stingray name. That notoriety combined with its one-year production run and the outright silliness of the design earn it a spot on our list.
No. 17: 1994 Chevrolet Corvette Brickyard 400
The Brickyard 400 model was built to commemorate the opening of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 1994 and they were a part of a pre-race parade. In this parade, 25 of these `Vettes – 12 black and 13 red – drive around the NASCAR drivers. Officially, these models had an additional 30 horsepower on tap, so they weren’t all show and no go. Following the parade, the 25 models went back to GM for evaluation and were shipped out to dealerships for sale. Some of the models had their Brickyard decals removed, so there is a possibility that some owners have no clue how historic their red or black `Vette may be.
No. 16: 1993 Chevrolet Corvette ZR-1 40th Anniversary
Typically, a car that had over 6,500 units built doesn’t pique our interest much. The 1993 Corvette 40th Anniversary – the ZR-1, in particular – is one that still fits the bill, despite having a total of 6,749 sold. Not only does this Corvette wear a sexy Ruby Red motif, but it packs a mean punch, as its retuned LT-5 V-8 engine pumps out a massive 405 horsepower – a number unheard of in the early 1990s. To boot, it also earned the title of most powerful Corvette ever at the time it was produced.
No. 15: 2004 Chevrolet Corvette Indy 500 Pace Car
Well, if someone says they have a 2004 Corvette Pace Car, you can rest assured that it is a replica. If he tries to argue with you, just let him know that even though the Corvette was the pace car, GM chose not to produce any replicas for sale to the public. This model is so desirable that Corvette enthusiasts have gone to great lengths to replicate this red, white and blue donning pace car. The only changes made to this pace car include an upgraded transmission, power-steering coolers, high-flow exhaust, racing harnesses and a strobe-light system.
The only reason this extremely rare pace car is so low on the list is because the only way you can get your hands on it is to buy a replica.