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 Chevrolet Corvette C1 photo

Image credits: © Chevrolet. GM Corp

1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1

Chevrolet began experimenting with the idea of building a completely new series of automobiles in an arena dominated mostly by foreign performance vehicles. In 1953, at New York's Waldorf - Astoria Hotel, Chevrolet unveiled the Corvette as merely a show car, and soon put into production following strong public enthusiasm. The two-seater was clothed in fiberglass and powered by the Blue Flame six-cylinder engine. Although popular and pleasant on the eye, the Corvette fought financially to survive and to improve upon its lack-luster performance image. Over the years that followed, it's design and engineering evolve, later earning it the title of America's sports car.

The personality of Chevrolet's sports car changed dramatically with Zora Arkus-Duntov's arrival in the mid-1950s. The focus shifted to performance resulting in higher performance engines and improved handling. With the assistance of the 283 cubic-inch version of Chevrolet's lightweight and durable small-block engine in 1957, the Corvette had become a true American sports car.

The 1958 Chevy Corvette was offered in six different colors, and the most powerful engine was the fuel-injected 283 cubic inch V-8 producing 290 horsepower. The heater was still optional and a handling package was offered that provided stiffer springs and heavier finned brake drums with metallic brake linings.

The Corvette received quad-headlights. The chassis length was increased to 177.2 inches, and the width to 72.8. It also received 200 extra pounds, even though these are not the modifications that sports-car drivers typically like to see. The car, in a way, became more 'secure' with bumpers being secured to the frame. The nitrocellulose paint was replaced with acrylic lacquer. More chrome was added to the front and back of the vehicle. The interior was revamped. All the instruments on the dash were relocated with the highlight being the 160 mph speedometer.

Four engines were offered ranging from a 245 bhp unit to the 290 bhp fuel-injected model. The base engine was an overhead valve V8 with a 283 cubic-inch displacement, a 9.5:1 compression ratio, five main bearings, hydraulic valve lifters, Carter or Rochester four-barrel carburetor, and developed 230 horsepower and 300 lb-ft of torque. A dual Carter four-barrel version brought horsepower to 245 while torque remained at 300. The 283 CID V8 with Rochester fuel injection had horsepower that ranged from 250 to 290 horsepower. A three-speed manual all-synchromesh transmission with floor-mounted gear shifter was standard while the two-speed Powerglide automatic was optional. A four-speed manual all-synchromesh was also offered as optional equipment.

Seat belts were now standard and had previously been a dealer-installed option in 1956 and 1957. The interior was new with the gauges now spread across the dashboard rather than the previous setup of in front of the driver. A passenger assist bar was another new feature, along with the center console.

The base price for the Corvette convertible was $3,600 and 9,168 examples were sold. This was an increase over 1957's figures of 6,339 and 1956's figures of 3,467.

This was the year of Harley Earl's retirement.


by Daniel Vaughan | Feb 2005

Related Reading : Chevrolet Corvette History

Very few vehicles elicit the same kind of satisfaction as the Chevrolet Corvette. The Vette is a symbol of childhood dreams and grown-up triumph. The only true American Sports car, this car stands for excellence and became an icon as a high-performance and dynamic sports vehicle. First introduced in January of 1953, the Corvette has only become more renowned as the years drift by. Undergoing many....
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Chevrolet Corvette Roars Into Its 60th Year

On June 30, 1953, the first of a new kind of Chevrolet – indeed, a new kind of American car – rolled off an assembly line in Flint, Mich. The car had only two seats. There were no roll-up windows, or exterior door handles, for that matter. Its body wasnt stamped from steel but, rather, molded from reinforced fiberglass. While the postwar Baby Boom was in full swing, this was definitely not....
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1958 Vehicle Profiles

1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1 vehicle information

Convertible

The year 1958 was the 50th anniversary of General Motors (GM), a company that is now 100 years old this year.....[continue reading]

1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1 vehicle information

Convertible

Chassis Num: J58S101773

This car is a matching numbers example powered by a 245 horsepower, 283 cubic-inch V8 engine fitted with two four-barrel carburetors and mated to a four-speed manual transmission. The white body is offset by silver coves with excellent chrome and a r....[continue reading]

1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1 vehicle information

Convertible

The 1958 Chevrolet Corvette, considered part of the original C1 series, was fitted with a solid rear axle. It received fairly extensive restyling for that model year, being fitted with quad headlamps and bright trim changes, a curvaceous instrument p....[continue reading]

1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1 vehicle information

Convertible

Chassis Num: J585105091

This Corvette is one of Panama Yellow 1958 Corvettes produced. It has white coves and a white convertible top. It has the optional 270 horsepower V8 engine with legendary engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov cam and dual four-barrel carburetors. It is one of 9....[continue reading]

1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1 vehicle information

Convertible

This car has been owned by the same owner for the past five decades. 1958 was a banner year for Corvette. It was the first year they crossed the one horsepower per cubic inch threshold with the very engine that's in this car. In addition to the 283/2....[continue reading]

1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1 vehicle information

Convertible

Chassis Num: J58S107999

This Chevrolet Corvette is finished in Snowcrest White with red coves and a matching interior. It is one of 2,477 Corvettes produced in 1958. It has a white vinyl soft top, a Vintage Air air-conditioning unit, and an AM/FM radio. The 283 cubic-inch V....[continue reading]

1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1 vehicle information

Convertible

Chassis Num: J58S102492

This Chevrolet Corvette current has 39,000 original miles. It is a restored example with a red exterior with white coves and a red interior. There is a white soft top, push button radio, whitewall tires and wheel covers.....[continue reading]

1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1 vehicle information

Convertible

The first Corvette was a GM Motorama 'Dream Car' unveiled at the 1953 New York Auto Show. It reached limited production later that year with just 300 1953 Corvettes built, all 'Polo White' with red interiors, powered by a 235 cubic-inch 'Blue Flame' ....[continue reading]

Convertible
 
Convertible
Chassis #: J58S101773 
Convertible
 
Convertible
Chassis #: J585105091 
Convertible
 
Convertible
Chassis #: J58S107999 
Convertible
Chassis #: J58S102492 
Convertible
 

Recent Vehicle Additions

Performance and Specification Comparison

Price Comparison

$335-$3,630
1958 Corvette C1
$3,630-$18,600
1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1 Base Price : $3,630

Other 1958 Chevrolet Models

Corvette C1

Year
Production
Wheelbase
Engine
Prices
300
102.00 in.
6 cyl., 235.50 CID., 150.00hp
$3,500 - $3,500
3,640
102.00 in.
6 cyl., 235.50 CID., 150.00hp
$3,525 - $3,525
102.00 in.
8 cyl.
700
102.00 in.
6 cyl., 235.50 CID., 155.00hp
8 cyl., 265.00 CID., 195.00hp
$2,800 - $3,000
3,467
102.00 in.
8 cyl., 265.00 CID., 210.00hp
8 cyl., 265.00 CID., 225.00hp
8 cyl., 265.00 CID., 240.00hp
$3,118 - $3,118
6,339
102.00 in.
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 220.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 245.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 250.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 270.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 283.00hp
$3,460 - $3,460
9,168
102.00 in.
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 230.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 245.00hp
8 cyl., 348.00 CID., 250.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 270.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 290.00hp
$3,630 - $3,630
9,670
102.00 in.
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 230.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 245.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 250.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 270.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 290.00hp
$3,875 - $3,875
10,261
102.00 in.
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 230.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 250.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 270.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 275.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 315.00hp
$3,900 - $3,900
102.00 in.
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 230.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 245.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 270.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 275.00hp
8 cyl., 283.00 CID., 315.00hp
102.00 in.
8 cyl., 327.00 CID., 250.00hp
8 cyl., 327.00 CID., 300.00hp
8 cyl., 327.00 CID., 340.00hp
8 cyl., 327.00 CID., 360.00hp
$4,000 - $4,000

Industry Production

#1#2#3Chevrolet
1963Chevrolet (2,237,201)Ford (1,525,404)Fiat (957,941)2,237,201
1962Chevrolet (2,061,677)Ford (1,476,031)Fiat (957,941)2,061,677
1961Ford (1,338,790)Chevrolet (1,318,014)Volkswagen (807,488)1,318,014
1960Chevrolet (1,653,168)Ford (1,439,370)Toyota (1,068,321)1,653,168
1959Chevrolet (1,462,140)Ford (1,450,953)Volkswagen (575,407)1,462,140
1958Chevrolet (1,142,460)Ford (987,945)Volkswagen (451,526)1,142,460
1957Ford (1,676,449)Chevrolet (1,505,910)Plymouth (726,009)1,505,910
1956Chevrolet (1,567,117)Ford (1,408,478)Buick (572,024)1,567,117
1955Chevrolet (1,704,667)Ford (1,451,157)Buick (738,814)1,704,667
1954Ford (1,165,942)Chevrolet (1,143,561)Plymouth (463,148)1,143,561
1953Chevrolet (1,346,475)Ford (1,247,542)Plymouth (650,451)1,346,475

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