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Clean C4: 1984 Chevy Corvette

This 1984 Chevrolet Corvette is listed as an honest survivor that hasn’t seen much in the way of alterations from new, aside from some fresh rubber. The seller notes it has a tick over 30,000 original miles and is equipped with an automatic transmission. The asking price of $7,500 does seem entirely reasonable, and the condition is such that the seller is confident you could fly in and drive it home. The paint and body certainly look presentable and the red interior is quite sharp. Find the Corvette here on eBay and located in Iowa, and thanks to Barn Finds reader Ikey H. for sending this in. 

My challenge with collectible cars made in higher quantities is that there’s no real sense of urgency among buyers to snatch up a car quickly. That’s the challenge with the C4 Corvette, in my opinion, as there’s always a generous supply of them listed at any given time. The manual transmission cars may have a dedicated following that presses the “Buy” button quickly, but it really wasn’t until the ZR1 and Grand Sports arrived they any of the lineup truly became limited production. Sure, there was a Pace Car or two, but those aren’t exactly rare, either.

Now, that’s just one man’s (uneducated) opinion. I actually think the C4’s with the right suspension setup and the manual transmission are downright overlooked in today’s collector car market. They can be set up to handle quite well, and some of the factory suspension options were completely competent in a track environment. This car, with its automatic transmission, will always be more of a cheap cruiser than anything you’d want to over-invest in. I like it for the interior, as the red carpets and leather seats make for an eye-catching cabin.

Of course, the upside to this generation of the Corvette is you can effectively walk into any Napa or Autozone store and find whatever parts you need to get back on the road, even if you’re stranded miles (and days) from home. They sound downright nasty with an aftermarket exhaust or simply a home-brew cat-less setup, so there’s no denying the C4 can provide good, cheap fun with the kind of noise that can wake the neighbors. Would you continue to preserve a Corvette like this one or look for a cheaper project to modify?


  1. Nevada1/2rack Nevadahalfrack Member

    Vast improvement over the white POS Corvette we saw here previously this week! For the difference in price between them for what it would take to make that one into one you could drive, you could buy this one drive it home and have enough left over to pay for the whole trip.
    Have to wonder though about the interior-is that normal wear&tear for a Corvette with just 30,000 miles?

    Like 2
  2. IkeyHeyman

    I like this – the automatic is fine, I don’t need to be pushing in a clutch at my age. Biggest issue with the C4 for me is getting in and out. If I were buying this, I would definitely drive it home, it’s only 825 miles.

    Like 6
  3. Superdessucke

    Price is optimistic. You’d lose your patooty if you bought it at the ask and then drove it any distance, including the distance home. For 4k it might be worth it.

    Like 4
  4. Jeremy

    I agree Jeff. These are overlooked and unappreciated. Id obviously prefer a manual transmission, and they pop up frequently. And for the reasonably affordable prices these cars carry, it’s a great bang for your buck fun time. Especially with the modded exhaust you mentioned. They sound evil, handle like a go cart and stay fairly reliable even when thrashed upon. I’m a fan

    Like 4
  5. whmracer99

    These are some of the least sought after Corvettes. Notoriously unreliable and rode like a Conestoga wagon. I have a couple friends that paid large premiums to be first in line to get these new when they were the “next great Corvette” — one paid a $15K premium to get one of the first ones in Atlanta. Both dumped them within 18 months at large financial losses after their value cratered when they were panned by most reviewers. The one who paid the high premium told me he couldn’t sit in it for more than 3 hours and sold it for roughly half of what he paid for it. Suspension update kits came out soon after which fixed some of the ride complaints but other issues persisted and the value has never really come back. You want to own a cheap Corvette here’s about one of your last chances but in this case, you really do get what you pay for.

    Like 4
    • JoeNYWF64

      My biggest issue with this entire gen of vettes is the ridiculous tiny footwells – not for claustrophobics! lol
      Maybe your friends got the vettes with the following?–>
      “In 1984 the optional performance suspension became the Z-51 which included heavy-duty front and rear springs, shock absorbers, stabilizer bars and bushings, fast steering ratio, engine oil cooler, and extra radiator fan. ”
      I would think the earliest new GEN vettes would be loaded with options to maximize early “i must have it first!” profits.
      I’m surprised they did not notice the rough ride during the test drive. Oh, they would love the ride on early ’70s trans ams on rough roads. lol

      Like 1
      • 86_Vette_Convertible

        If you don’t like the footwells in the C4’s, you should try out the C7’s. I have and though I didn’t measure it out, it feels like the footwell in the C7 is no bigger and may be a little smaller than the C4’s. The 84’s had the Z51 suspension and as noted were a bit rough on the handling aspect of the ride, which was altered with a different spring rate in later cars. Almost without exception the suspension bushings in them are worn and need replacing. If that’s the case, a relatively easy upgrade is the Banski rear suspension. IMO it’s worth the upgrade and the heim joints replacing the rubber or polly bushings increase the handling on curvy road that’s measurable via the ‘seat of the pants’ meter.
        The biggest issue with the C4’s is exiting the car vs. later models. I find with mine when exiting the car I use my left upper arm against the doorjamb to help get out of the car. The wider doors and lover sill make it easier in newer ones, but they don’t have the road feel of the C4’s, but that’s a personal opinion.

        Like 3
  6. Comet

    My friend claims to have had a “romantic interlude” with his then girlfriend in one. Now it would be a workout to get in or out. No pun intended.

    Like 4
  7. Bhowe Member

    Well i just bought this to add to my fleet. Ive always loved the styling and the star wars dash. Going to keep it pampered and use as a nice summertime cruiser. I need to get off this site. This is the 2nd one now thats been featured and i had to get it

    Like 2
    • On and On On and On Member

      Congratulations Bhowe, many miles of smiles, it seems you got a nice one.

      Like 0

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