1978 Chevrolet Corvette Indy Pace Car With 75 Genuine Miles!

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We’ve seen a few examples of the 1978 Chevrolet Corvette Indy Pace Car over the years here at Barn Finds, and they tend to be divided into two distinct categories. Some are amazingly well preserved low-mileage vehicles, while others look like they have lived life hard and fast. Our feature car falls into the former category for an excellent reason. One glance at the odometer reveals that this classic has accumulated a mere 75 genuine miles throughout its life. The time has come for it to head to a new home, so the owner has listed it for sale here on eBay. The Corvette is located in Fort Worth, Texas, and the owner has set a BIN of $41,995. He also has left the option available for interested parties to make an offer.

With the Corvette being chosen as the official Pace Car for the 1978 Indianapolis 500, the company decided to leverage this honor by producing a limited edition replica that buyers could park in their driveway. Their original intention was to build a mere 2,500 examples, but there was a backlash from dealers who realized that they might not receive a car. Therefore, the build total eventually swelled to 6,502 vehicles. That represented 16% of total Corvette sales for that model year, which didn’t make it as rare as Chevrolet originally intended. A proportion of these cars were snapped up by individuals who speculated that they would appreciate in value if they remained well-preserved. I suspect that this is one of those cars, and the odometer reading reinforces that. It is presented in its original combination of Black and Silver. Chevrolet supplied the cars with a decal kit that buyers could apply that included all of the signage worn by the genuine Indy Pace Cars. Some buyers chose to transform their purchases into mobile billboards, while some, like this owner, didn’t. It isn’t clear whether the decals are included with this car, but you have to hope that they are at the BIN price. The paint has some swirls in it but no chips or significant marks. The owner believes that the swirls could be buffed out to return the car to a factory-fresh state, but that will be something for the buyer to investigate. The car’s underside reveals no rust issues, although many of the suspension components and the exhaust do wear surface corrosion. The alloy wheels are free from oxidization, and they are wrapped in their original Goodyear tires. The distinctive spoilers are in good order, and the glass looks flawless.

Buyers could order their Pace Car with two versions of Chevrolet’s venerable 350ci V8. This car features the L48 version, which should be producing 185hp. It is also equipped with a 3-speed automatic transmission, power steering, and power brakes. Point this Corvette at a ¼ mile, and the journey would be over in 17.1 seconds. That didn’t make it a fire-breathing monster, but its saving grace was that years of ongoing development had transformed the C3 Corvette from something hard-edged to a car that was altogether smoother and more refined. Some buyers decried this change, but for others, it was welcomed with open arms. The engine bay of this car presents as well as you might expect given its lack of use. It is flawless and unmolested, right down to the last belt, hose, and clamp. All of the factory markings are intact, giving the engine bay an as-new appearance. It isn’t clear whether the ‘Vette runs or drives or whether it is roadworthy. It seems that potential buyers will have a few questions to ask the seller.

The owner has removed some of the more minor protective plastic covers inside the Corvette, but it still looks like it has just rolled off the production line. Under the plastic covers, the silver leather upholstery on the seats looks brand new. The same is true of every other piece of upholstery, plastic, the dash, and the carpet. The Indy Pace Car came nicely equipped from the factory, and this one retains all of those features. They include air conditioning, power windows, power locks, a rear defogger, a leather-wrapped tilt/telescopic wheel, and an AM/FM radio/8-track player.

This 1978 Corvette Pace Car is a fantastic survivor. We’ve seen a few over the years with similar odometer readings, which leads us to a pertinent question: What would I do with it if I were to buy it? That’s a question that I can’t answer with any degree of certainty. There’s no doubt that if driven carefully, it could retain its overall condition and good looks, but part of its inherent value rests in the double-digit odometer reading. With cars of this type, every extra mile has the potential to impact their value negatively. Classics like this were designed to be driven and enjoyed, but at what cost? Do you think this Corvette’s destiny rests on our roads, or is it going to spend its days in a motor museum somewhere?

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. Rick

    The low mileage is the selling point here, though I still don’t think it’s $42K worth. If it were a 4-speed with the higher output engine, maybe. Too many clones out there that would do it better at a lower price, but if one just had to have this version and a real PC, this could be a starting point. Just remember to change literally everything made of rubber and probably clean the gas system as well. Fun fact: no 2 Pace Cars were exactly identical. Black Vettes were pulled aside off the assembly line and the silver lower were hand-masked out to be sprayed on the spot. The red pinstripes were added by hand afterwards, of course.

    Like 4
    • Ike Onick

      And when was the silver interior installed?

      Like 1
  2. 370zpp 370zppMember

    If you could buy it for a lot less, swap out that anemic 350 for something with many more HP & a third pedal, and finally, drive it and enjoy it.

    Like 1
  3. Skorzeny

    I like the looks of these, especially the wheels. I agree with Rick, the ask is a bit high. The seller needs to understand that the automatic is TRASH and I would have that in a dumpster in about an hour on the way to converting this to a manual. I guess throw an LS motor at it too…

    Like 2
  4. Mike

    Looks way better without all the “official” graphics.

    Like 6
    • Howie Mueler

      Yes Mike i agree, one solid color would be better.

      Like 3
  5. JoeNYWF64

    What are the chances that the a/c still blows as cold as it did in ’78 & the oil & filter was changed at least twice a year, regardless of mileage?
    & coolant was changed at least every 2-3 yrs before the phosphate free 5 yr coolant came out?
    You literally can not drive this car at all – else destroy its value, unless you disconnect the speedo cable – easier to do if it has cruise control.
    I’d rather see a vette with orig shiny paint(scatches & chips ok) with the record of HIGHEST mileage – would have to be lucky with no accidents & using it only in good weather & not keeping it out in the sun too long. & that one you could drive & set a record each time you used it!

    Like 1
  6. fran

    Nice, but 75 miles? Does it run? Move? Stop? Or does the whole drivetrain need to be rebuilt? Cars sitting, even if maintained? Not good. Many say, “Its all good” but…
    AM/FM 8 track, will need to be yanked out and the tape mech will need belts and be recapped. Just for example.
    One might just buy a mint one for less and know it will be good to go!

    Like 0
    • fran

      To add, they have many cars on ebay that seem very high priced, thus this car must also be overpriced. However nice….I am a little watchful of Texas cars due to flooding.

      Like 0
  7. Steve Clinton

    75 original miles? This car is worth the asking price only if it goes in a museum or under glass in someone’s garage and is never driven.

    Like 1
  8. Miguel - Mexican Spec

    No just no.

    Too many people over the years have lost their shirts on these cars.

    I remember stories as far back as 1983 that people lost everything they had betting these wold go up n value.

    Chevy over produced the car and people got stuck with them.

    As a car it is not the best that was ever made, so do you want to pay 40K for a sticker package?

    Like 1
  9. Sam Shive

    Per Hagerty.com, this car’s value, assuming Concours (excellent) condition, should be around $27,600.Apr 22, 2020

    Like 0
  10. Pookie Jamie

    A trophy to me would be an original 53. This thing would get driven if I took possession of it. This is just a waste of money that was bought to show off in the future…. if it was covered, then why the swirl marks? I’m a little Leary of this one. Good luck with the sale

    Like 0
  11. Marco

    The absolute worst thing for a car is to let it sit. Seals dry out, rubber gets hard and cracks, whatever fuel is in the system goes bad and on and on. This is a display piece and that’s it. But really- who cares? It’s still a high volume production car- nothing special. Sorry seller- should have driven it, enjoyed it then sold it years ago.

    Like 1
  12. Bob McK

    I had a friend that had one of these with 24 miles. He had a hard time selling it and actually lost money. He got somewhere in the 20’s for it. He used to back it around his driveway to keep it running. It took up a garage bay and provided little pleasure.

    Like 0

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