Down Under Corvette: 1972 Chevrolet Corvette

Adam ClarkeBy Adam Clarke

This 1972 Corvette is a Down Under barn find. The Corvette is not a hugely common car in Australia, as those that are on our streets are usually examples that have been privately imported from the USA. There are companies in Australia who now specialize in imports, but they generally gravitate towards the later cars. That such a car should end up stored away is quite surprising. You will find this car listed for sale here on eBay. Located on Bribie Island, Queensland, Australia, it is listed with a clear title. The seller has set a BIN of $39,995 but the option is there to make an offer.

Okay Barn Finders, I need your input here. I have been studying the supplied photos and am trying to work out whether there are faded sections in the Ontario Orange paint, or whether it is just a trick of the light. I’ve tried magnifying the photos, and I think that it’s probably a trick of the light as colors like this can do that under bright light. Leaving that aside, the car does appear to be in good condition. The seller states that it is rust-free, and if it has spent most of its life residing in Queensland, then I am inclined to believe him. The exterior trim all looks to be in really nice condition, so overall it looks quite encouraging.

The interior of this Corvette appears to be in generally reasonable condition. Thankfully nobody has attacked the dash or door trims to fit an aftermarket stereo or speakers, and everything appears to be present. Both seats would benefit from new covers, as the driver’s seat sports a number of tears, while the passenger seat material looks stretched, and it also appears to be discolored. The dash looks good, and the factory radio is still in place.

Under the hood looks quite tidy, and the engine is the numbers matching 350ci backed by an automatic transmission. The car is fitted with power steering, power brakes and air conditioning. The seller has fitted new brakes all round, so things should be fine in that area. There is no word on whether the A/C is operational, but I would hope so, as Queensland can be a pretty hot place at times.

For our American readers the price on this Corvette may seem quite high, but if you take into account the exchange rate between Australia and the USA, the price on this particular Corvette equates to around US$28,500. Looking at what is available on the market in Australia at present reveals that this particular car is probably priced appropriately for a vehicle of this vintage. With the recent demise of the Australian vehicle manufacturing industry and the lack of choice of V8-engined cars available Down Under, I would be willing to bet that cars like this Corvette are going to become increasingly desirable and that prices will continue to climb.

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Comments

  1. Mike

    I have a’ 71 Vette LT1, and I gotta say this ’72 is exceptionally clean. I’m not a fan of the luggage rack or the auto trans, but it does have tilt and telescopic and 1972 was the last year for front and rear chrome bumpers. The price seems more on the LT1/454 range in this condition, (the driver’s side seat is torn) I personally wouldn’t pay this much for a base 350. Good luck to the new owner, they are a blast to drive , and I’ve always loved the C3 Corvette (especially the ’68-’73)

    4
    • leiniedude Member

      You are a lucky Dude Mike to have a LT1! I have a base 72 and it is a blast to drive.18 years and I still like the tops off and back window out. The luggage rack is not a problem for me. Pretty car! Take care, Mike.

      7
      • Mike

        Thanks.Yeah these cars aren’t for everyone, but they’re definitely for me. As the saying goes, “wrap your ass in fiberglass !” Take Care

        2
  2. gbvette62

    The Corvette has a huge following in Australia. We have quite a few Australian members on the Corvette Forum, and there are at least 7 or 8 Australian Corvette clubs, including an NCRS Chapter.

    This looks like a very nice car. I’m not crazy about the aftermarket cruise control, and the chrome valve covers with Cal Custom “T” bolts, look out of place on what’s supposed to be a numbers matching car, but otherwise it’s hard to fault it.

    I’m a little surprised to see that it hasn’t been converted to right hand drive. I understand that it varies by State, but in some parts of Australian, cars are required to be RHD. A number of Australian companies are now doing conversions on Corvettes and other American cars. Maybe that’s why it’s been in storage for 30 years, the owner didn’t want to convert it?

    2
    • Steve R

      The requirement that older cars, I think 30 years of age, was dropped in the early-2000’s. I have a really good friend from Australia that I’ve know for over 30 years comes to the US every few years to do car stuff. Him and a friend used to send at least one container full of parts home every trip, but they stopped that practice in the late-90’s. My buddy will only buy cars that were converted to RHD, he says the get more respect at shows. According to my friend it’s easy to pick out cars which were imported when new, the are loaded since only the wealthy could afford to import American cars at the time, they loaded them down with performance and luxury options. He says the people most interested in American cars are on the verge of aging out of the market. Most of the younger generation are interested in JDM cars, which he says are readily available, inexpensively, due to government meddling. This car would have been brought over in the not too distant past, the “barn find” tag is just a ploy to drive more eyes to the ad.

      Steve R

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  3. Tom Member

    I have had a few of these and a 72 exactly like this one, different wheels.

    I am 99% sure the paint has massive issues. It is not a lighting problem. Top of the LF fender and around door handles = pretty sure paint is shot. THUS the paint is thin, over buffed and really not good everywhere else.

    Love the 68-72 Vetts. One of my favorite of all time. This one. Small block, not LT1, LOW HP (not as bad as 73 and newer BUT not as good as 71 and older) Automatic, nice BUT still needs a total restoration. Looks nice but cosmetically tired.

    You could drive it and not feel bad about it. $40K maybe in a country where there are not many to be had.

    $20K max here in the USA (honestly maybe less) in its current condition. going to take $30K (AT LEAST) to get it right and then you have a $50K 72 vette with a small block automatic. Hmmmm. The only thing this car has going for it is that it does not appear to be molested AND it is a Chrome Bumper Stingray.

    No rust is an ASSUMPTION…. Check out the frame and the bird cage….never a good surprise. If any sign of corrosion or rust around the windshield/inside edge of where the dash meets the windshield = probable rust issue which any indicators are typically the “tip of the iceberg”. These rust issues can take a 9 out of this price real fast and make $39,995, $3,995 in a blink!

    This car is between a rock and a hard place in my book ESPECIALLY for $40K. I just had a really nice 70 in my shop DONE, 4 speed car. $25K. Someone with more money than brains will pay it though!

    2
  4. Chris In Australia

    Half an hour from me. American cars can be left as LHD if over 30 years old. I have no intention of converting my Skylark. Not sure if the demographic for American cars is an ageing one, but yes there is interest in Japanese cars among the youngsters, and they are all RHD. With insane paranoia about the great Satan ( asbestos) on cars, importing them just got harder. Maybe that will drive prices up?

    1
  5. T Mel

    Go Orange!

    1

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