Basement Find: 1968 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible

It’s incredible what some people will have squirreled away in their basements. In this case, a basement search has revealed a 1968 Corvette Convertible that was hidden for more than 40-years. The current owner has returned it to a roadworthy state, and it is ready to find its way to some lucky buyer. The next owner can choose to treat the car to a cosmetic restoration, although there seems to be no reason why it couldn’t be driven and enjoyed as-is. The Convertible is located in Falls Creek, Pennsylvania, and is listed for sale here on eBay. Bidding has reached $17,600, but the reserve hasn’t been met. For those who don’t want to go through the auction process, there is a BIN option. This has been set at $24,995.

The LeMans Blue paint on the Corvette is said to be original, and it does have a few marks and blemishes. The hood isn’t original, but the owner does hold the original if the buyer would prefer it. The fiberglass is free of any problems or defects, while the exterior trim and chrome seem to be in good condition. The owner supplies a wide assortment of photos, and the underside of the Corvette looks to be about as clean and solid as you could hope to find. The wheels aren’t original, and nor is the side exhaust. Swapping these two items out for factory components would not be a difficult job, but that will be a matter of personal preference. The factory hardtop appears to be in good condition, but while the frame for the convertible top is good, the top itself will need to be replaced. Reasonably typically for Corvettes of this vintage, the headlights and wiper door aren’t functioning. The owner is investigating these issues, so there is a chance that they will be addressed before the car heads to a new home.

Powering the Corvette is the L79 version of the 327ci V8. This pumps out 350hp, which finds its way to the rear wheels via a 4-speed manual transmission. This is the sort of mechanical configuration that should allow the Corvette to sprint through the ¼ mile in 14.2 seconds. That is the sort of figure that still holds up well by today’s standards. The seller doesn’t indicate whether the Corvette is a numbers-matching classic, but given how much he stresses its general originality, I suspect that it probably is. After laying dormant for so long, a fair amount of work has been undertaken to return the vehicle to a roadworthy state. All of the brake calipers have been replaced, along with the brake lines and master cylinder. All of the hoses are also new. A new set of headers and a side exhaust have been installed, and the original carburetor has been rebuilt. The Corvette has been fitted with new plugs, plug wires, cap, rotor, and condenser. The owner states that the Corvette now runs and drives perfectly. As you will hear if you play the video clip at the bottom of this article, the 327 sounds really tough.

The Corvette’s interior is mostly original, and while it isn’t perfect, it is certainly serviceable for a survivor. The passenger seat has a tear in it, and a new cover would be required if it was to present perfectly. One of the knobs is missing off the factory AM/FM radio, while the carpet is looking slightly faded and stained. Beyond those couple of issues, the rest of the trim and plastic remains very presentable. One glaring change is the shifter knob. That isn’t original, and I can’t say that I am a fan of it. It also looks like the reverse actuator is missing, so both will require replacement if originality is critical. Having said that, the car is said to shift nicely through all of its gears, and reverse is easy to select. Therefore, this isn’t an issue that needs to be addressed immediately.

I’ve just gone to check that I haven’t got something as cool and desirable as this 1968 Corvette hiding in my basement. As my house doesn’t actually have a basement, this is highly unlikely! However, if it did, I would be happy to find this car hiding there. It might not be 100% original, but this is a classic that is rust-free and ready to be enjoyed. I hope that someone buys it and hits the road very soon. Classics like this shouldn’t be hidden away in basements. That simply isn’t right.

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Comments

  1. 86_Vette_Convertible

    Assuming the frame and birdcage are good, then there’s a few changes IMO that should be done. Untangle the plug wires, lose the side pipes, fix the wipers and headlights, lose the hood and put the original back on and get rid of that gas cap and put the original back on.

    Like 16
    • Steve R

      After you first ditch the cheap Chinese valve covers and air cleaner.

      Steve R

      Like 15
    • Gerald Sheppard

      Definitely lose the gaudy leg burner side pipes and the L88 style hood on a SBC is just chintzy. Stock Talley’s would be so much better too.

      Like 6
  2. OIL SLICK

    I disagree, keep the pipes and the hood. This example is unique and great looking ta boot. I HATE all Vette guys and they have ruined the hobby with their numbers matching BS and inessent nonsense of correctness.

    Like 26
  3. Dave

    The wiper door and headlights are vacuum operated, easy fix, it just needs a vacuum hose kit, maybe also a vacuum seal kit at the headlights. Anything else that’s not original is also very easy to rectify if you want originality. They’re just bolts.

    Like 12
    • Larry Mackenzie

      Your right, almost always just a vacuum problem. Owned a number of these ,but the nicest one belonged to my brother. Complete stock 427/4spd. If memory serves me correct it was 395 HP. Delivered the car from Truro, Nova Scotia to Calgary Alberta in 57.5 hours. I know small blocks are much more bulletproof but this big block ran super strong. I want the car original with right hood, exhaust and they came with nice looking rally wheel/ chrome beauty ring and Corvette centre cap.

      Like 4
  4. whmracer99

    I want to like this car — I really do. I had a red over black 68 with the factory side-pipes, 327/300hp engine, and a 4 speed. It was probably my favorite car I’ve every owned. BUT this one scares me. There are signs all over it of shoddy body work (bubbled paint around the headlights, previous right quarter damage, mis-matched paint colors on adjacent panels, etc.) that make me really question what’s under the “original” paint. You also have a car that’s been freshly undercoated and all the underhood black paint has been redone as well as the engine and transmission have fresh coats of paint (note that the ad does NOT say anything about numbers matching drivetrain parts — hmmmm) which tells me the engine and trans have been out of the car. The paint may be “original” (well maybe some of it is) but it’s toast and probably not even of driver quality. Then when he revs the motor in the video it belches blue smoke out the exhaust. I’d have to lay my hands on this one before I’d touch it at anywhere near what the going price is.

    Like 6
  5. Joseph Hoffman

    Car and Driver took a 427 in 1968 and only did 14.1 in the quarter mile, so there is no way this one does 14.2 with a 327.

    Like 3
    • Roy Blankenship

      Using magazine test data is like referencing Wikipedia. A friend had a ’67 Corvette 350-327, it went 13.7’s all day long. I had a ’66 Caprice 325-396, it ran 14.96 at an NHRA track, and a ;68 GTX 440 with 84K.that ran 14.15 best. A ’68 Chevelle 396-375 that ran in Pure Stock at the same track ran 13.40’s, 4.10 gear, Polyglas G70’s. I would like to think that magazine guys would be at the top of their game, but except for Milt Shornack’s Royal Bobcat GTO ringer and the Ronnie Sox 440 Six-Barrel tests, most magazine tests back in the day were two aboard with test gear attached to the car (Extra weight).

      Like 3
      • Joseph Hoffman

        And this car wouldn’t do 14.2. I would take Car and Driver info over anyone’s memory any day for testing a stock car.

    • SD WRENCH HEAD

      Valve stem seals have to be toast.

  6. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    I’m not seeing the value here, for a ’68 Coupe that needs paint and had a quickie refurb.
    Highest current bid is $17,600, seems to be a shill, and no way is this worth the $25K BIN.

    Like 2
  7. Tony

    Just a heads up if you’re considering this car. Check out this seller on BBB. There has been some claims against this guy. Can never be to careful today.

    Like 1
  8. 38ChevyCoupeGuy

    Seller states they fix everything that could go wrong with a car that’s used, and it’s usually the reason a person wants to sell it. Forgive me if I’m wrong, but I think headlights are a vital part of driving,especially at night. Can’t figure it out,so I’m going to sell it mentality? Jeez, I’ve heard of over selling ones self, but talking about others then doing the same? Who knows? For Pete’s sake, turn the shaft another 180 degrees and paint the other side! Classic spray bomb rebuild it seems.😁

    Like 2
  9. Blueanalyst

    In it’s present condition this is a $15,000 car – tops!

    Like 1
  10. Erik

    Other then painting the hood to match, I don’t think I’d change a thing on it. And I hate side pipes! Nice to see a survivor. That is, not a survivor of how it came off the dealer floor. There’s tons of those around. But rather what they looked like cruising the main drag on a Saturday night in the 70s.

    Like 2
  11. whmracer99

    BTW — just saw the drag slicks and the cowl mounted tach with shift light on the “before” pics. Might explain why the original drivetrain is MIA and why it sat so long.

    Like 1
  12. TimM

    I agree with pretty much everything that everyone said in the posts!! I would loose the rims too!! I always look at the C-3 in two ways!! The earlier ones had more horses due to the later government regulations on emissions and they had the chrome bumpers too!! In my opinion this always makes them more valuable and easier to keep original but not trying to change things to get more horses!! This will be a real nice car once the unwanted mods are changed!!!

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