Eckler’s Hatch Conversion: 1972 Chevrolet Corvette LT1

Although Corvettes sporting the various hatchback conversions are a love-it-or-hate-it affair, it seems like plenty of owners took the time and incurred the expense to make the switch. Eckler’s and Greenwood are the two names mentioned in such conversations, and this 1972 model here on craigslist sports the former’s conversion kit. Originally an LT1 car, this Corvette now comes with a 350 and an asking price of $22,500.

Condition is purported to be very good, thanks to low mileage of just 9,980. It has a bit of a period show car vibe to it, with the seller noting a lacquer paint job performed in the 70s, presumably at the same time the Eckler’s kit was added. The mileage claim makes the engine swap all the more confusing, especially if it was destined to be a show car.

The good news is the Corvette is said to run quite well, and the 350 is paired to the preferred 4-speed manual. The seller notes A/C has also been installed and is said to work well. The Corvette comes with period side-exit exhaust pipes from a ’69 model, and the original color was War Bonnet Yellow. This is one of those cars that’s very tempting to return to stock condition.

..except for the hatch conversion, of course – that should stay in place. If a convertible is more your kind of thing, we have an excellent Barn Finds Exclusive on offer featuring a 1974 model with a matching L82 engine paired to a 4-speed manual transmission. While the hatchback is an acquired taste, everyone loves a convertible.

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Comments

  1. bobhess bobhess Member

    As a big fan of yellow Corvettes I can’t believe someone put a station wagon paint job on this car. Do like the conversion though. Back to yellow and fire it up.

    Like 3
  2. ruxvette

    Couple things…
    The ad states the “car was born as a real 72 LT-1 car” which is a little confusing but, I think what the seller means is that it is a real LT-1. Then and now.
    It may be tempting to put it back to stock but at $22.5k there is no financially feasible way to do that.
    Having said that the LT-1 puts out 255 HP and, as a small block 4 speed car with ’67 style chambered exhaust, it would be fun to drive as is.

    Like 2
  3. Frank Sumatra

    Not a 1972 steering wheel and I think the rest of it is probably cobbled together. If it was a 1972, what the hell were you thinking??

    Like 4
    • ccrvtt

      Not a 1972 front end or rear end, either, since ’72 was the last year for the chrome bumpers. 1973 was the last year for the ducktail/chrome bumper rear end. Cool looking engine and most of these old malaise-era Corvettes have had their small blocks breathed on to remedy the anemic power output. Questionable wheels and unfortunate color choice. Frankenvette – but it’s in nice shape.

      Reminds me of the old blind date description, “She makes all her own clothes and the girls really like her…”

      Like 4
    • Dennis

      Looks like a Frankenstein…. Original LT-1 probably was beat ’till it blew up. Most likely they thought value just went down the toilet so why not molest it.. Personally I hate any body mod bull..t done to these C3’s… Got to be the number one most customized(good or mostly bad) car model ever..

      Like 1
  4. ruxvette

    The Eckler hatchback was styled as a ’75-up and, perhaps, the front end from ’78-up was added to match, along with a rear intake hood.
    As for what he was thinking…this was a $6000 car new and, by the late ’70’s was probably a $3500 car. Unfortunately, the owner had not the foresight to see that chrome bumper cars would be desirable 50 years later.

    Like 2
  5. Jerry

    Always check for body/frame damage on conversions. It is much cheaper to start with a wrecked car if you plan on replacing the panels anyway.

    Like 1
  6. gbvette62

    “This is one of those cars that’s very tempting to return to stock condition. ..except for the hatch conversion, of course – that should stay in place.” I’m sorry, but there is no returning this car to stock.

    We’d need to see the VIN number to know if this car started life as an LT-1, and the block stamp pad, to know if it still has the original engine. But considering how much this car has been modified, it’s really a mute point. Besides the hatch conversion, the car has a 75-79 nose, a 73-76 hood, a molded in 76-79 back bumper, a 78-82 steering column and wheel, a 77 center gauge cluster (that’s cut up for a DIN radio), 75-76 emblems, 75-79 tail lamps, 78-79 front spoiler, aftermarket AC, and an old set of Saratoga Top glass tops.

    There’s no reason to use 67 chambered side pipes under 69 covers, since the 69 pipes where chambered too, and don’t sound much different than 67’s. I know, I’ve owned Corvettes with 69 side pipes.

    This is not a car that’s worth restoring. It looks to be well built, so if you want an interesting modified Corvette, then this might be for you, but if you want a stock LT-1, spend another $15,000 and buy an original one.

    Like 6
    • Frank Sumatra

      Spot on! It’s a Johnny Cash Corvette- “It’s a 72-73-74-75-76-77-78-79-80” And the title weighs 12 pounds.

      Like 5
      • Dennis

        Frankenstein.. LOL my 71 Coupe has a 79 frame and 77 front clip altered to look exactly as a 71 front clip. But that’s it. So I guess I’d say my 71-77-79 Corvette. LOL

        Like 1
  7. Ron Bajorek

    isn’t a LT1 a 350?

    Like 1
  8. George mattar

    If this is a real 72 LT 1, the engine suffix code is either CKY or CRT. CRT added K19, which is A.I.R. smog. A legit 72 LT1 is worth plenty, but at this price to bring back to stock is not feasible. 72 is last solid lifter Corvette.

    Like 1
  9. moosie moosie

    Maybe pieced together from leftover parts in the spare time with an added Ecklers hatch conversion thrown in for good (?) measure, I wonder what the VIN.# makes it out to be, DMV might get salty when you go to register this one. BEWARE.

    Like 1
  10. scottymac
  11. 433jeff

    The lt1 is quite a monster, beating it to death would be quite a task , aside of being stoopit the 350 is one durable rig. 2 bolt fuel pump on side of block( not in the tank) an hei? A quadrajet and a vacuum line. Ok i kinda got off topic, i think the 350 chevy is best gas engine ever built, yes i like the 289 also, and yes the vettes are great

    Like 1
  12. Mike H

    119980 miles maybe but wear patterns in the leather are not consistent with a 9980 mile car

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