33k Mile Pace Car: 1978 Chevrolet Corvette

Corvettes are America’s number one sports car. In 1978, Chevrolet badged all the cars with 25th anniversary medallions and produced a silver and charcoal anniversary car. However, most eyes are drawn to the 1978 Indianapolis Pace Car that was black and silver and sported front and rear spoilers. Chevrolet produced 6,502 units of this car so there are many still available. This one has a reported 33k miles and is located in Jasper, Georgia. It is listed for auction here on eBay with one day remaining. It is currently bid to $16,1400 and the reserve appears to be met.

One unique feature of this car is the silver leather interior. It is very similar to the material used in the 1979 Pontiac Trans Am Tenth Anniversary Edition. The space age material brings a unique look to the Pace Car. This car has all the features you would expect including tilt/telescopic steering, power windows, power locks, automatic transmission and T-tops. The seller states the interior is in great shape and states that the car has never been hit. It is said to be dependable and run and drive great.

The base engine for the 1978 Corvette was the L-48 350 cubic inch V8 that produced 190 horsepower. This car has the optional L-82 350 cubic inch V8 engine that was rated at 225 horsepower. Unfortunately, these cars were really not that fast. They handled well but the L-82 automatic was timed at around 16 seconds in the quarter mile. I remember racing of few of these cars in high school. Off the line they were pretty slow but at highway speeds, they did much better. The L-82 only generated 280 lb ft of torque.

The seller has restored the brake system with now slotted rotors, master cylinder and brake booster. The calipers and brake lines were also replaced along with the sway bar bushings and shocks. The paint is said to be original and has some nicks and scratches. It should make for a nice driver.


  1. Jim in FL

    These look so much better without the door graphics. Nice honest vehicle at a reasonable price. Two thumbs up.

    Like 5
  2. Troy

    I must be getting ready to have what some call a midlife Crisis. Because I’ve never ridden in a corvette and I’m not really a Chevys fan but I find myself wanting to get one of these. Fortunately I have been able to resist the temptation so far to bid on it.

    Like 2
  3. Raymond Smith

    Nice looking car but you would really want to look in person. It looks to be sitting high, especially in front. The ad also states “has the typical paint checking etc”. It appears to have had emission equipment removed too. There is a hard line on the left side of the engine heading to nowhere with a pipe plug in it. If you to to the left side engine photo in the add you will see some additional pipe plugs and what appears to be an EGR block off plate. The air cleaner stud is also longer than stock. Of course none of these are deal breakers but the car may not be as pure as the ad would lead someone to believe.

    Like 3
  4. Mitch

    GM’s plastic fantastic. Many made but the kitschy silver interior
    looks cheap. A more dedicated choice of colour would look less
    gimmicky. The seats are similar to those of Abarth.

    Since the 70-72 the 78 is more appealing due to the then still
    missing rear glass hatch.
    I prefer the opposite coloured variant with silver on black it
    gives the shark a more diving and flattened – fast – appearance.

    Another candidate for a swap to a better Toyota/Lexus drive-
    train. More torqueband, more horsepower, better fuel consump
    tion. Better driveablility. And keep this plastic seats out.

  5. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    SOLD for $16,600.

  6. Grant

    In 1978 you could have gotten a standard Vette at the regular cost, any color you wanted, add in the high output 350 and a 4 sp. Just made so much more sense then one of these. Oh wait, I forgot, they were investments. Gosh, how silly of me. A lot of great roads never got to be driven on by so many 78s. (and their fool owners. GM laughed all the way to the bank)

    Like 2
  7. Brad460 Member

    Recently there was an auto museum in fountain city, Wisconsin called Elmer’s. Elmer passed and so the heirs had an auction to sell off all his cars.

    One of his cars was this same year and model Corvette with, I kid you not, 5 miles on it. I’m pretty familiar with the area where this was and in fact know the owner of the chevy dealer where the car sold new.

    I don’t remember exactly but I think it sold in the area of 60k. All.the stuff he had is listed on mecum auction website. Car still had all the plastic shipping materials on the seats etc and came with a matching coat and luggage.

  8. DeBorah & George Mattar

    In 1978, the Wall Street Journal declared these INSTANT collector cars and so it began. The 1987 Buick GNX was next and so on down the line. Well, GNXs sell for $250,000 today. These piles of junk Pace Cars never took off and some do sell for $50,000, but not many. Why spend the $13,000 they cost new 43 years ago, let it sit and maybe make $20,000? You would have done better with mutual funds or property. Much better. I detail cars and have for 40 years. I cleaned one of these recently with 10,000 miles on it for the owner who was selling it. While in very good shape, the cheap silver carpets still faded, despite the car being garaged. The paint was horrible. I corrected it best I could. GM built junk then and still does today.

  9. Joe Haska

    Grant and Brad, I think you guys are remembering when these cars were new and a story came out in the wall street journal, that documented how valuable these cars were going to be. It literally started a stampede of buyers who believed it. It was crazy for a few months until all the believers realized they had been duped. I was caught up in the middle of it helping a buyer trying to recover from what he had done. It was an adventure, you can imagine how it turned out. The price this car sold for is just about what sticker was in 1978

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