Rough Beast: 1970 Corvette 454 LS5

Calling this Corvette a beast seems like a rather accurate description. For one it’s going to be a beast of a project to undertake, but once it’s done it’s going to be one heck of a beast. This ’70s was optioned with the LS5 454 V8, which was rated at 390 horsepower and 500 pounds of torque! Obviously, not all of that power was making it to the wheels, but that’s still a lot of power to have on tap. It was supposedly stored in a barn for 30 years, but it looks more like it was parked next to the barn. Even in its current condition, I’m sure someone will save it. If that’s you, it can be found here on eBay in Garfield, New Jersey with a current bid of $2,700 and no reserve.

The seller’s photos really don’t help sell this car. They only provide one small photo of the engine, which if I’m not mistaken is this car’s greatest selling point. They claim it’s the original numbers matching engine, but they don’t know if it runs or even turns over. Given that the keys are missing and that they are listing it for their neighbor, I guess I can understand why they haven’t tried turning the engine over. I’m actually glad they haven’t tried to start it, as that would likely do more damage than good, but it would be nice to know if the engine is seized.

I’m not exactly sure what happened to the interior, but it doesn’t look good. It looks somewhat complete, but the driver’s side door panel and some other trim pieces are definitely missing. And I’m sure once you get there, you will discover other parts are missing.

The seller states that the frame is solid, although I sure see lots of rust. I don’t see any holes, but the whole thing will need to be media blasted and painted to keep it from deteriorating further. Of course, if this turns out to actually be a numbers matching car with a clear title, it might be worth buying a new chassis for it. Restoring it is going to be costly, but it sure would be awesome once completed!

Fast Finds


  1. Jeffro

    What river in Jersey did they pull this out of?

    • Don

      This is off topic, but what is going on with the 10,000 hot wheels cars.?

    • Big Mike

      They said it was stored in a Barn, is there a BARN RIVER in New Jersey?

    • Vin in NJ

      Garfield runs right alongside the Passaic River…coincidence?

  2. Don

    First time I ever sean a rusty fiberglass body ,push it back into the pond .

  3. Adam T45 Staff

    I saw a Corvette with an interior that looked like this on an episode of Mythbusters. They’d left a rotting pig carcass in it for months. I suggest that it’s a good thing that the internet doesn’t download smells!

  4. Don

    O I bet they do many many moons ago there was a bar I went to every day in the John they had a 25 cent vending machine that gave you scratch and sniff stickers ,

  5. Peter

    Why would you punish yourself by buying this?

    • Don

      Spent many a quarter ,your the one with the dirty mind ,,,I never said what they smelled like ,it could have smelled like grandma’s pie ,ya that sounds sick

    • Tom Member

      and an automatic trans on top of it! What a waste! (my opinion).

      I believe this car starred in the movie “A River Ran Through It”

  6. Stang1968

    Sandy flood damage?

    • Don

      Ya I had that

  7. stillrunners lawrence Member

    Is that bondo on the fiberglass ?

  8. Dave Member

    Geez Don – good one about the pond. I almost blew stew out my nose!

  9. Tony S

    The condition of the rocker covers makes me sad…

  10. 86 Vette Convertible

    Stick a fork in it, that one’s done. Doesn’t even qualify as a good parts car IMO.

  11. jdjonesdr

    Whoever did this should be shot. Or at least never allowed to own another vehicle. .ever.

  12. gbvette62

    The 70-75 454 LS-4’s and LS-5’s, were hardly “beasts”, Like this one, most were automatics, with power steering, power brakes, power windows, leather, etc, and much better suited for cruising, than blistering performance.

    From the eBay pictures, the frame and underside don’t look any worse than a lot of other old cars I’ve seen. The missing parts (such as the door panel, shift console, carpet, shielding, AC compressor, etc), are all parts that are available, and would likely be replaced anyway.

    I’d be much more concerned about what can’t be seen in the pictures. The condition of the birdcage, a-pillars, and rocker panels, and the damage done to the nose to convert it to a tilt nose, than the surface rust and overall tired condition of the car. I’ve seen Corvettes in much worse shape, brought back to life. It’s just a matter of what the final bid is, that will determine if it’s worth it.

  13. racer99

    Had a ’74 big block automatic a/c Corvette and never really enjoyed it. Found that the small block cars are much better balanced and comfortable. I’m sure someone will try to rebuild this but not me.

  14. Ronebee

    Perfect Starting point for a Maco Shark Conversion

  15. Ronebee

    big block, auto, a/c , perfect candidate

  16. Squanto

    LS-5 not worth any effort. LS-6 would change the whole game. Send it back to the Jimmy Hoffa Garage.

  17. Blackta1

    For anyone who believes this vehicle may NOT have been in a body of water, you sir/ma’am, are mistaken.

  18. HeadMaster1

    All I needed to see was that “Jersey” was involved. I don’t know about anybody else, but I will NEVER (again) buy anything from NY or NJ. The people just don’t seem to care about lying about everything on a car. Once bought a beautiful looking Cad Seville Elegante (the black and silver ones)….”All Original”….It rolls off the transport, won’t start….OK, battery was dead…..put in a battery, crank and crank, no fire….OK, maybe it’s not getting fuel even thought the gauge reads 1/2……I lift the air cleaner lid to find a F’ing carb on a car that should be EFI……seller was a total POS about it, claiming it’s the original engine, even though they all came with efi, and the dam fender still had a “fuel injection” plate stuck to it….Wiring was all hacked, vcar never ran right……Got burned on a truck out of NY also, had a bad trans, water in oil….seller didn’t reply…..

  19. ACZ

    Oval port motor and 2 pedals. Not even a parts car. Perfect POS. Only thing it’s good for is a boat anchor, like the last owner used it.

  20. Doug Towsley

    Just sad,,,

  21. Kevin Reid

    Looks as if this thing was drag raced off the end of a pier and left there to feed the fish.

  22. John C Cargill

    It may be an LS 5 but how many have you seen lately. It amazes me how people let this happen. But the basis is there. All the pieces are available. Why is it so many projects have the door panels missing?

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