Parked for Decades: 1970 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible 454

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This 1970 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible proves there are still desirable classics hidden away in barns and sheds, waiting patiently for the right person to return them to their rightful place on our roads. The ‘Vette spent decades in storage, and although it isn’t perfect, it is a genuine survivor featuring one of the most desirable drivetrain combinations. The seller performed a recent revival, but it is worth looking closely to decide whether you would restore or preserve this beauty.

Chevrolet struck a winning formula with the C3 Corvette, introducing a car with styling that would not be merely iconic but would remain globally recognizable decades after the last cars rolled off the line. The 1970 model year brought the first subtle tweaks, with the most obvious one more for practical purposes than cosmetic enhancement. The fenders received slight flares to reduce paint damage caused by errant stones thrown up by the wheels. Otherwise, it was business as usual. The company offered buyers a choice of eleven paint shades, with this car’s first owner selecting Cortez Silver. It retains a healthy shine, and there are no signs of patchiness. The photos reveal minor chips and marks that are acceptable when we learn the vehicle’s history. The seller recently purchased the Corvette from its second owner, who had been its custodian since 1972. They placed the car into storage in 2003, and it only emerged when the seller took possession. What makes it attractive for potential buyers is that it is an unrestored survivor with no history of repairs or accident damage. Therefore, the paint is actually quite impressive for a fifty-four-year-old classic that its owners have enjoyed as its creators intended. The underside shots seem to confirm the seller’s claim that this beauty is rock-solid and rust-free. The soft-top is surprisingly good for its age, as are the glass and trim. Treating this Convertible to a light cosmetic refresh would recapture its glory days, but preserving its survivor status is a valid approach.

The most significant slice of news awaiting Corvette buyers in 1970 was a capacity increase for its big-block V8. Chevrolet lifted it from 427ci to 454ci, although buyers only received a single version. It produces 390hp and 500 ft/lbs of torque, with the driver handling shifting duties via a four-speed manual transmission. The engine output figures are impressive, and the Corvette puts those ponies to good use. The ¼-mile journey takes 13.8 seconds, and giving the car its head will see the needle hit 134mph. I acknowledge that some readers will take one look at the engine bay shots and question this classic’s survivor status. There are noticeable changes that might raise doubts, with the valve covers, intake, and exhaust manifolds, all aftermarket items. However, the seller includes the original components, allowing the buyer to achieve a factory look. They confirm it retains its numbers-matching drivetrain and that after careful revival from its slumber, it runs and drives well. Potential buyers can consider it a turnkey proposition.

The previous owner swapped an aftermarket shifter into this Corvette, but that appears to be the only change to an interior that presents pretty well for its age. There is a split on the driver’s seat, although the remaining Black vinyl upholstered surfaces are virtually perfect. There are typical scratches and marks on the console around the ashtray, but these are almost unavoidable on C3s of this vintage. The dash is good, and there is no carpet fading. The new owner doesn’t receive luxury touches like air conditioning or power windows, but they will enjoy the AM/FM radio and tilt/telescopic wheel.

The auction action probably tells us more about this Corvette than anything else. Since the seller listed it here on eBay in Mifflinburg, Pennsylvania, forty-eight bids have pushed the price to $18,100. That figure remains short of the reserve, although the intensity so far suggests the price will climb significantly before the hammer falls. That leaves the new owner with choices to make, and it will be fascinating to gauge your opinion. Would you restore this Corvette, or would preservation as a genuine survivor be your focus?

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. ACZ

    Would look better if you got rid of the L88 hood and air cleaner and went back to stock.

    Like 2
  2. Acton Thomas

    Oh boy, if I didn’t already have one, I would buy this car. Big Block, 4 Speed, no A/C, no power windows, no power steering, all business and matching numbers too! I like the L-88 hood, it really make for better drive-ability and the additional hood clearance gives you more options for intake manifolds. This is a great car and you can make it what you want. Body off restoration? Survivor/driver? Enjoy it while you fix it? Yes all of those, with this car you can’t lose.

    Like 5
  3. Nelson C

    Like Action Thomas says it’s all business. I’d change that wonky t-handle shifter for better comfort and grip. Make her sing.

    Like 4
    • rabadooMember

      Agreed, but if there’s clearance I’d go plain vanilla on the hood… Mak’em listen to the pipes if they want a hint.. otherwise let’em tell you what it’s going to cost you to see them walk away…. Uh huh….. If you can stir that M22 you shouldn’t see much FROM BACK THEN going away…. I’ll have a sarsaparilla and reminisce cuz anything that comes with yellow painted dipsticks…just ain’t the same. And turn up Gracie…..

      Like 1
  4. roger stephens

    Had one same configuration only red was a screamer! But wouldn’t pass a gas station. Put it on dynamo 475hp.

    Like 4
  5. Bamapoppy

    I’m all about originality so I’d go survivor mode. This one’s a keeper. Few of them because of the years gone by and the GM strike that limited the number built in the first place. I once ran into a girl who had a similar car and she was oblivious to what she had; a ‘70 convertible, Cortez Silver just like this one, with a 4-speed.

    Like 3
  6. PRA4SNW PRA4SNWMember

    I like this one, and at the current bid of 22.1K, a nice bargain. With 3 days to go, let’s see where it ends up.

    So nice to see that all of the removed original parts are still with the car and didn’t get tossed. Chrome shielding and also what looks to be the A.I.R. pump – wow!

    I agree. that T-Handle has got to go!

    Like 1
  7. Edward

    Agree on the L88 hood. May not be original, but it helps with performance and cooling.

    Like 0

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