Cheap C1? 1954 Chevrolet Corvette

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With a $9,200 BIN and a current bid of $6,999 I wouldn’t necessarily call this C1 Corvette cheap, but I suppose the term cheap is relative to the vehicle. Early Corvette projects can fetch serious money if they are relatively complete and solid. In the realm of Corvettes, this project could actually be a relatively good buy for anyone looking to restore a C1. The seller of this one believes the frame is in decent shape, but there’s always a chance that there will be rust hiding under that fiberglass shell. If you are up for a challenge and are a fan of early C1s, you can take a closer look at this project here on eBay in Austin, Texas.

While I’ve done my fair share of bodywork, I wouldn’t call myself an expert by any means, but I’ve done enough of it to know this Corvette’s body is going to be a ton of work to get right. It appears the car has suffered both front and rear end damage, but it’s hard to tell if it was in an accident or simply got damaged while being in storage. The front end is looking pretty rough and is going to need expert-level fiberglass repairs to look right. If you are patient and don’t mind sanding, you could probably get it right at home.

The seller provides a long list of what all is included and it just what you see in the pictures. There’s no engine, transmission, or differential. The interior is long gone, as is all the trim. So, not only is there a long list of repairs, but also a long list of required parts. Thankfully, you can find everything needed to make this car complete, as long as you aren’t a stickler for being numbers correct. Personally, I’d love to know how this car ended up in its current state and where all the important parts have gone too. Chances are, someone started restoring it years ago and had big plans for it, but never got around to fixing the body. Since the drivetrain is missing, the next owner will have lots of options, that is if they ever get around to completing it. Correct Blue-Flame inline sixes are out there, but a V8 upgrade would make for a much more lively car to drive.

Restoring this Corvette isn’t going to be cheap by any means, but the current bid seems quite reasonable for a C1 project. If you have the needed skills and/or time to fix the body, you might be able to stay upright on this one. It will really come down to that frame though and whether it is solid. So, what do you think? Is this project worth taking on at the seller’s BIN price or does it need to be even cheaper to be realistic?

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  1. JEFF

    Well if you buy the car and all the parts in his ebay thats more money.

    Like 1
  2. BlondeUXBMember

    Seller seems to have “parted-it-out” to himself but he’s willing to flip the parts to the buyer…

    Like 1
  3. grant

    Well if it doesn’t hit reserve you can buy just the title and the VIN plate.

    Like 0
  4. Darrun

    The scary part to me is…he seems to be a dealer in 53-55 parts. Usually a guy knows all the vulnerable areas of a car that they routinely work with. He could probably reach under this car, without putting it on a rack, and have a real good idea of how strong the frame is.

    Like 1
    • Craig

      Having done a 55 I can tell you that you’re a good $55,000 into this before paint. That’s if you go RestoMod. Probably $25k more to restore Ncrs.

      Like 0
  5. bobhess bobhessMember

    This is the kind of project that you buy and never finish. Way too much $ for nothing.

    Like 2
    • Scotty Bell

      I totally agree. As someone who once put too much hard earned money into a classic car, I can tell you this is a terrible investment of money, time and stress. I’ll never do it again.

      Like 1
  6. Neil G

    I am trying to figure out how $9200. is reasonable for this picked clean C1 Corvette. Before plunking down this amount of Cash, I would love to see a shopping list of parts, cost for new paint, fiberglass repair and labor to get this up to at least a respectable cruiser.

    Like 1
    • Andy

      So, if you’re a glutten for punishment and a total dreamer, you buy this car for 9.2k and put another 40k or so to get it on the road looking good
      Or, you spring for 36.2k and buy the next listing on ebay for a good looking runner. This car has heartache written all over it and sadly, it’s probably not worth the effort.

      P.s. I love Corvettes.

      Like 1
  7. jf85tr99

    I wonder how much of this car is still fiberglass, i’d go with 60% bondo/body filler/ 40% fiberglass :) . Regardless, I guess I am still happy to see this piece of history alive and sitting on wheels. GLWS


    Like 1
  8. Jack Hammer

    Wait a minute. I thought I heard a creaking, almost groaning sound………….CRASH!

    Like 0
  9. DonC

    Put a serious of notches all the way around and consider it an ash tray.
    Isn’t that how all the “shop” projects turned out back in the day?

    Like 0
  10. moosie moosie

    Weird, as to this is included, thats not ? why not just list it so its clear as to what your ca$h is buying. sad to say but I think this once desirable C-1 has run it course. Its like the last puppy to be adopted from the pound. If I owned a nice C-1 I’d be worried that some mook was buying a title & a VIN. plate.

    Like 0
  11. John B.

    I traded for a ‘54 in only slightly better condition back in 1981; it had been “relieved” of most of it’s parts very much like this one. I still don’t have all of the parts! Every swap meet I attend I always find a few parts-they are almost always junk or extremely overpriced. Apparently the sellers don’t realize that there aren’t that many people trying to put these cars back original anymore (most folks today are doing resto-mods and I don’t blame them). If you make a reasonable offer they act insulted but I still enjoy the chase. I’m old enough now to begin to realize that I probably won’t get it finished in my lifetime!

    Like 2
  12. Ron Bajorek

    I showed this car to my dog and asked his opinion…… all he said was “Ruff”

    Like 0

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