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1 of 618: 1965 Chevrolet Corvette

The big news in Corvette circles in 1965 was the addition of the 396 cubic inch big-block V8. The L78 produced a whopping 425 hp and just 2,157 of them left the assembly line. The seller’s car was one of them, although (sadly) the original 396 is no longer there. This Chevy had a ton of work done to it a few years ago and comes across as a nice, driver-quality sports car for you to enjoy. Located in Kingwood, West Virginia, this Sting Ray is available here on eBay where $55,100 is the current bid, not enough to break through the seller’s reserve.

Chevrolet’s C2 Corvette was a hit in 1963 and by 1965 it had grown in sales for three consecutive years. 23,562 Corvettes were sold in ’65, of which 8,186 were coupes (they had lost the split rear window in ’64). When you ordered the L78 big V8, it came with a hood with a funnel-shaped air scoop to help make room for the barn burner. Those nifty louvers on the front fenders were now functional to allow more air into the engine compartment.

The seller’s ‘Vette received more than $3,000 worth of repairs in 2017, which appears to include a rebuild of the replacement 396 engine. Per the seller, this coupe is one of only 618 copies to leave the factory with the 425 hp motor. And it’s paired with a M21 4-speed manual transmission. When you ordered that engine, you had to open an access door in the left-hand front fender to change out the battery and that setup is still in play here. The Chevy sports 4-wheel disc brakes.

We’re told that the body is solid and has likely never had any repairs done to the fiberglass. The silver paint may not be original, but the color is. It’s not perfect, with some blemishes here and there and the original as a small crack. Open the doors and you’ll find a black interior with leather seats, and it all looks quite tidy. Only the driver’s side power window is inoperative. We don’t know what the seller’s reserve may be, but if the 396 was numbers matching, that figure would likely be higher.


  1. Bo West

    Had repairs on nose, though not the best.

    Like 1
  2. Frank TA

    “This listing was ended by the seller on Sun, Nov 26 at 10:26 AM because there was an error in the listing.” – What happen?

    Like 1
    • Rodney

      Pretty sure they were being called out on naming their expectations. It’ll be back in a few days/weeks.

      “The current market for C2 396/425’s is low six figures.”

      Like 0
  3. Billy

    Probably changed his, or her, mind.
    If the latter it makes perfect sense.

    Like 1
  4. Turtle Man

    Does the Corvette emblem belong on the hood?

    Like 0
  5. al

    the hood is from a 1966 it’s says Corvette on it only 66 had that not 65

    Like 5
  6. JaxChevy

    it’s been relisted….just putting this here…


    Like 0
    • Frank TA

      The last ebay sale got to 55K, so the seller probably put in the 1st bid on the new sale at 56K…lol. Don’t think it’ll work.

      Like 0
  7. Billy

    This one doesn’t feel right. Buyer be cautious.

    Like 4
    • Bo

      Wrong hood, wrong core support and radiator, and the header panel is worse than a poor fit. It appears it was a not so great amateur body repair.

      Like 1
  8. George Mattar

    NCRS guys will cringe looking at this car. Not to nitpick, but incorrect cap on coolant recovery tank, ignition shielding missing and air cleaner lid was flat black from GM. Dumb, but how it was. Wrong hood. Yeah, coupes more scarce than roadsters, but 396 cars do not sell for low six figures. The market is a bit soft now, except for 63 SWCs.

    Like 1
    • Bo

      That tank doesn’t belong on that car at all. That’s a small block radiator, and they had to use the matching core support for it to fit. The small block radiator was aluminum, which was the reason for the fill tank. The big block radiator was brass and a good deal larger. What someone has now is a car that will most likely have worse than normal heat problems, plus you can’t even buy formed rad hoses.

      Like 1
    • Bo

      Couldn’t swear to it, but I don’t believe big blocks had ignition shielding. I believe they used plug wires covered in stainless steel braid, and both ends of the braid attached to ground. I use to make a living on these cars in the seventies and eighties, but that’s taxing the old memory.

      Like 0
  9. dogwater

    Looks like a nice project at the right price I have restored a few Corvette over the years ,the battery on this one looks like it on the driver side c2 battery is behind the expansion tank on the passenger side

    Like 0
    • ACZ

      The battery in these is on the left side like an air conditioned small block C2.

      Like 0
    • Bo

      Shouldn’t have an expansion tank. Big blocks have the cap on the right side of the radiator. No tank needed.

      Like 0

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