Cheap Project? 1962 Chevrolet Corvette

Seventeen grand may not seem cheap when we’re talking project cars but it might actually be a bargain price for a C1 Corvette. Let’s take a closer look at this 1962 example and see if it’s a good buy. This car is going to need a full restoration but when perfect ones can go for close to six figures, any project is worth some consideration. It’s located in Wallingford, Connecticut and is listed here on Facebook. Thanks go to Peter R for sharing the tip!

The 327 V8 was the only engine choice available. You could get it in various states of tune with the top dog fitted with fuel injection. This one is obviously not a fuelie but it could be one of the higher spec engines and that would affect the value. You could get 250, 300, or 340 horsepower engines depending on what carb and and cam where fitted.

The interior is toast on this one but we can tell that this is a manual transmission car. I can’t tell it that’s a 3 or 4-speed shifter sticking up out of the mess though. The 4-speed is obviously preferred but there weren’t a lot produced. The black over red color combo could look amazing once the car is fully restored. It might take a while to get there though.

The fiberglass body can’t rust but that doesn’t mean the metal frame underneath is immune from the nasty stuff. The seller doesn’t give us much information about the car but at least they are honest and point out that the frame has rot. Perhaps it could be patched up or maybe a replacement frame could be sourced. That might be a deal breaker though. What do you think? Is $17k a small price for this big project?

Fast Finds


  1. James West

    Need pics of the frame.

    Like 6
  2. mike b

    Needs an explanation of why it looks like a ’61.

    Like 16
    • Jim Jimenez

      I agree with Mike. It looks like a ’61. Check out those side mouldings and the upper fender mouldings. If that was the case, the engine is a 283.
      It still is a C1 that that is intact and restorable, but I would make sure the title and vin plate match.

      Like 7
    • Al

      i would say its a 1961 it has trim around the cove 61 had trim 62 did not also if 1961 its a 283 not a 327 61 last year for 283 and started at 230 hp

      Like 2
  3. gaspumpchas

    Sad to see in this condition. Amazingly complete tho. If the seller says the frame is rotten expect the worst. Good luck if you take it on; we sure have seen worse here on BF. Stay safe.

    Like 11
  4. Daniel Wright

    Might be a good candidate for a full frame swap and restomod.

    Like 5
  5. Steve Clinton

    Why would an owner let a car like this end up in this condition? Such a shame!

    Like 19
    • tompdx Member

      Don’t forget that there was a time when a clean C1would only fetch about $1500!

      Like 3

        I bought a ’61 283/2-4bbl/4-speed for $1200 in 1974 … traded it for a ’55 TBird … my car had cove trim but not the the three chrome strips on the fender …

      • Paolo

        Clean? Never saw a clean one below $3,000. By 1971 they were already heading back up. At least in California from what I remember. A look at some old newspaper classifieds would be necessary to prove or disprove.
        Funny thing is in the early 1970s through the late 1980s there was a black ’61 beater in the Bay Area city where I lived. The owner looked and dressed somewhat like Jake and Elwood Blues long before there was any Blues Brothers. He was around 40 years old, had thinning black hair that was slicked straight back, wore glasses similar to Ray-Bans, always the same single breasted black suit with a boxy cut and narrow lapels. Always a white dress shirt with a skinny back tie. Can’t say whether or not he wore white socks because I never saw his feet. The only time I saw him was when he was driving his ‘vette to and from the local train station. From there he rode the train into San Francisco while his Covette sat all day in the parking lot with all the Datsuns, Novas, Mavericks Valiants, Mercedes 220s and other commuter cars.
        That ‘Vette was dull black probably in primer, had a hardtop, was slighty jacked up in back with a set of big and little and slighty rusty chrome reverse wheels with thin whitewall tires. As far as I was concerned, this guy was a Bada$$. He always had a wry mile whenever I saw him. In a way he was giving class conscious society the finger. As a teenager I couldn’t help but to stare when he drove by. He might as well have been wearing a Roman Toga and laurel crown and riding on the back of an Ostrich..

        Like 2
      • Steve

        I passed spending $600 on a 60 C1 in 1969, it looked decent except for the grafted on reverse hood scoop with the screen openings on the back, Ford style. Funny how things have changed.

        Like 1
  6. Rkp5555 Member

    Was anyone able to find this on Facebook Marketplace? I could not.

    I’ve got decent driving C1 chassis with 350 small block and Muncie 4 speed that was from a donor Vette that we restomodded. This could potentially work to put together a whole car

    Like 5
  7. gbvette62

    Looks like it’s gone now, but it’s not a 62. As others have said, the side trim and cove moldings are 61, as is the nose emblem, door panels and the generator driven tachometer (62’s had a distributor driven tach).

    Like 2
    • BlondeUXB Member

      It was pretty far gone as seen in the posting…

      Like 4
  8. Maverick

    Covered in plastic tarp didn’t help. Toast.

  9. Gerard Frederick

    There´s no such thing as a cheap project. This one appears to be rather costly, to put it mildly since it needs absolutely EVERYTHING.

    Like 3
  10. Larry D

    Yep, that thing sure looks like a ’61.

    There was a guy on ebay recently advertising a ’59 T-Bird as a ’60. The car had a ’60 VIN too. But it had the ’59 body. I wrote him and asked if he was sure his car was a ’60. He flared up at that and wrote back that yes, it had ’60 VIN!!! I wrote back and said it had a ’59 body. I told him he may want to contact whoever he bought it from and ask them to explain that.

    He kept on advertising it over and over with no takers. I assume many others noticed the same thing. Finally, he began advertising it as a ’59! But it had a ’60 VIN!

    Buying and selling old cars is tricky. Do your homework before you buy or sell one. It’s easy to get burned.

    Like 8
  11. Z Bear

    what would be the value of this post restoration

  12. Frank

    I hear TAPS playing…

    Like 3
  13. ACZ

    Whoever allowed this to happen should not be allowed to own any car.

    Like 9
    • JukeOfEarl

      “Whoever allowed this to happen should not be allowed to own any car.” Sometimes life gets in the way. I put two kids through private school and college, for example. Mine hasn’t been driven in 30 years. It’s in a shop now. It’s been there since Dec 2019. A couple of weeks ago I was told “two weeks.” I’m hoping for June 1st.

      Like 1
  14. mrvette57 Member

    Hi, this is a 61` for sure. It still has vin tad attached to steering col. also it has an 4-speed shifter so must be 4-spd. I would give #17000.00..Have a good one

  15. BILL

    SOLD or the owner got tired of all the negative feedback for having a Corvette look like this ad took it down in shame

    Like 2
  16. James427

    Most people buying C1-C3 restoration projects are mostly looking for a restomod platform. So, bad frame is not a deal breaker and you will not find many C1-C3’s for any cheaper than this. Title is important too.

    Like 2
  17. Larry D

    It was 1973 and I was in the market for an early Corvette. I really wanted ’53 thru ’57 model years but was flexible to all C1s.

    Then one day, our local newspaper had a classified ad for a Jewel Blue ’61 Corvette with blue interior, white coves, standard 283 4-speed and both tops.

    I called about it and went to see it that evening. It was in his basement and was a very nice car. His asking price was $3700. I made him a low-ball offer which he turned down. Then I offered a little more and he still said no. He finally told me $3500 was his bottom dollar. I refused to pay that and again told him my offer but he said no.

    So, I left. I went home and kept thinking about that car. Finally, I caved and decided to buy it at his price. I called his house and his wife answered. I asked for him but she said he was in the shower. She offered to relay a message. I told her I had looked at his Corvette earlier that evening and had decided I would buy it.

    She said he had sold the car to a man from Mooresville after I was there.

    That was really a lesson learned for me. If the price is half way decent on a used Corvette, you better grab it because someone else will if you don’t.

    Like 4
  18. ron andras

    the owner should have put a BETTER cover over it . what a shame .

  19. Lowell Peterson

    You can buy a beautiful vette of this vintage for $70k or less. No possible wayvto restore it for that.

  20. Steve S

    “Ahm’ol fix ‘er up someday. Now GIT!”

    Like 2

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