Genuine 283 Dual-Quad: 1957 Chevrolet Corvette

By 1957, Chevrolet’s C1 Corvette realized the potential many people had yearned for since the car’s appearance in 1953. Buyers could order their new Corvette with a selection of engines that cemented its performance credentials, which is what the original owner did with our feature car. The current owner commenced its restoration in the 1990s, but the work stalled early. They feel the time is right for this classic to find a new home and an owner willing and able to complete what they started. They have listed the ‘Vette here on Craigslist in West Hartford, Connecticut. They have set their price at $35,000, and while they appear firm on that figure, they may entertain trades for the right vehicle. I must send a big thank you to Barn Finder Peter R for referring this American icon to us.

The seller indicates they commenced their restoration of this Corvette in the 1990s, but it stalled early. They media-blasted the body, ready for a new coat of paint, but that’s as far as the body restoration proceeded. It isn’t clear what paint color it originally wore, but there are hints that suggest it may have been Polo White. The panels will need further preparation, but they appear free from major fiberglass flaws or defects. They also blasted the frame and painted it before slotting the drivetrain back into place. It now wears some minor surface corrosion, and with the car dismantled to its current level, stripping it and repeating the process may be a wise move for long-term preservation. That strategy wouldn’t add significantly to the restoration cost and would maximize the buyer’s return on their investment. The sale includes both the hard and soft-tops in good condition. The seller indicates the car is essentially complete, meaning many of the removed trim pieces may be among the extensive collection of included parts.

The 1957 model year could potentially be considered the first where the C1 Corvette achieved the performance potential many enthusiasts crave. The company dropped the original Blue Flame six the previous year, and the standard V8’s capacity increased to 283ci. In entry-level form, that motor delivered 220hp, but buyers could spend their hard-earned cash to access more potent options. This car’s original owner selected the Code 469C version that rolled off the line sporting a Dual-Quad induction system. This setup pushed power to 270hp, allowing a manual-equipped car to storm the ¼ mile in 15.4 seconds. The seller indicates this ‘Vette features its numbers-matching 283 complete with its original carburetors. However, someone has upgraded the transmission to a four-speed unit, which could impact the vehicle’s ultimate value. It isn’t clear when the car last ran, but I suspect it was probably in the 1990s. However, the seller’s claim that the project would suit someone capable of performing basic mechanical work suggests it is in sound health and merely requires reviving rather than rebuilding.

Corvette buyers in 1957 could only choose between Beige or Red interior trim, and it seems the original owner opted for the second of those. It looks like the upholstery may be presentable, but it would take an in-person inspection to confirm this. That process should also reveal whether the remaining interior trim and hardware are intact or what needs to go on the shopping list to return it to its former glory. One thing is certain; Once the new owner reassembles this classic, it will undoubtedly draw plenty of admiring glances and comments.

Returning this 1957 Corvette to its former glory will take some work, although the new owner can commence the process from a vehicle offering a sound foundation. It would undoubtedly draw crowds once they complete their work and provide performance guaranteed to plaster a smile on their face. The loss of its original transmission may impact its potential value, but if the buyer focuses on the finer details, it should still command a value beyond $70,000 by the time they put down the tools for the final time. What increases its desirability as a project is that it looks like the restoration process should be reasonably straightforward. It has only been on the market for a few days, and I won’t be surprised if it quickly finds a new home.


  1. DRV

    Monetarily you would have to start with this for free to make a dime on the finished car, but it could be fun for the right person. ’56 and ’57 are still the cleanest Corvette design for me.

    Like 8
  2. Melton Mooney

    I put that same dual carb set up on a pretty hot 327 in a 67 camaro back in the day. It taught me the difference between show and go.

    Like 5
  3. Michael Morgan

    RPO 685 4 speed trans was available in 57 Corvettes, so your “upgrade” was probably done at the factory.

    Like 1
  4. Jack Quantrill

    A ‘57 FI 283, would do 60 mph in first gear!

    Like 1
  5. Gary

    The best year Corvette for me, so clean and crisp.

    Like 3
  6. Tort Member

    Upgraded to a 4 speed? Does the vin tag say it came with a 3 speed which seems odd that the original owner ordered a dual quad 283 and not a 4 speed which was available for the first year in 57. Blue flame six in the previous year?

    Like 3
  7. bull

    4 Speed transmission not available until later in the production year. Lot’s of 1957 original 3 speed fuelly cars.

    Like 3
    • Tort Member

      April of 57. Not sure when production started so don’t know if that is late production. I owned a 57 back in the mid sixties that had a 4 speed with a single 4 bbl. .Of all the cars I have owned that is the one I regret selling the most!

      Like 2
  8. dannys shelbys

    In 1976 i had a 57 vette,what a beast I thought i would try something different . I found it in a barn 454 muncie 4sp straight axle front olds rear 514sgears what a money pit.should have left it there.old vettes cost is out of this world.I would LEAVE IT.. dannys shelbys

    Like 2
  9. RIX260

    How sad to see such a beautiful car allowed to get to this condition. There are 1,000’s of hours work ahead to put this into respectable condition.

    Like 3

    Too much money for too little car.

    Like 2
  11. Jerry Bramlett

    You can buy a very nice ’57 Corvette that can be driven home for less than $100,000 without much searching.

    This car has a good-looking frame and a decent body, but it would be a financial crap-shoot unless you went there and inspected all the parts before making an offer. And I’d request photos of the frame stamping and the factory VIN tag before considering the trip.

    It’s so easy to get buried in a disassembled project car. I KNOW.

    Like 1
  12. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member


    Since it came out of a CT barn, I wonder if Wayne Carini had a look at it.

    Like 0

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