No Reserve 350/4-Speed: 1975 Chevrolet Corvette

Jamie PalmerBy Jamie Palmer

So you’ve always wanted a Corvette, but they’ve been out of your budget range? Here’s a potential bargain C3 that might be a diamond in the rough! It’s located in Miami, Florida, and you can tell from the pictures it’s with a lover of Chevy’s fantastic plastic cars. The no reserve auction is here on eBay, and right now bidding is only up to just over $1,500!

The seller estimates that it’s been off the road for at least 10 years, and doesn’t drive or run at the moment. They also welcome you to come and inspect the car as well, which is nice to see. The rear bumper caps seems to have survived a lot better than the front one!

I’m not sure what would have made the paint come off like this. Also, is that a maroon color I see peeking through in places, or is it primer? Anyone familiar with what Chevrolet used as primer for mid-1970’s Corvettes? I’m hoping that the line or crease I see on the right in this picture isn’t evidence of a bump.

What’s this? A manual transmission in a mid-1970’s Corvette? Will wonders never cease! Unfortunately, you can see from the right hand side that there’s been a lot of water in this car, and there’s no telling what that’s done under the skin. It’s really sad, because originally this was a well-optioned car, with deluxe interior, tilt and telescoping steering wheel, power steering, power brakes, power windows and air conditioning. Now it just needs re-conditioning.

By 1974, the vaunted Corvette V8 was down to either 195 or 250 horsepower, depending on whether it was fitted with the L48 or L82 V8. It had to haul around just over 3,500 pounds, so as you can imagine it was working pretty hard. However, this is one of the easiest, if not the easiest engines to wake up. I’d love to inspect the birdcage, and if it were solid, pick this up and just build my own car the way I’d like to see a C3. Would you do that too?

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  1. Alan (Michigan )

    Interested to see where this one goes, price-wise. Our church’s charity garage has a ’75 runner, in better overall condition. It has yet to be decided which direction to go with it.

    • Alan (Michigan )

      Is this the same seller who had the “mix ‘n match” C1 a couple of months ago?

  2. dj

    It’s a 75 not a 74. I just bought a 79 needing resto with rebuilt engine and trans for $1750.

  3. JamestownMike

    Yep, Barn Finds listing has it as a 74 when it’s a 75. I’m sure there isn’t any price difference between the two years?? but it isn’t accurate.

    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

      It was my typo. Thanks for catching that guys.

  4. JamestownMike

    In my eyes, older Corvettes lost their appeal when they lost their chrome bumpers!

    • Tom Member

      THANK YOU !!!!!! 68-72 RULE. The enduro bumpers ……i will just say no thanks. Been there on both, Chrome bumpers or nothing. Oh and Chrome bumper cars of that era also had all the performance. after 72….= boat anchors.

      This guy has had a number of cars out there. listing one as his dad’s driver….I am going to guess it was his dad’s driver last week. the guy is giant flipper. if this car is so nice why not restore it to the 9’s himself?…..oh because you will NEVER get your money back out of it. Sorry just venting.

    • DrinkinGasoline

      I have to agree Mike…..bumper fascia’s just don’t get it, on any vehicle !

      • Rob

        Yes, but some of us can’t afford a chrome bumper car. The 74-82 Vetts are more affordable to some of us. I have a 79 and I have fun with it.

  5. SoCal Brian

    Looks like the body is rusting away!


    I would consider this if it was closer to me. The shipping would wipe me out.

  6. Don

    First time I have seen a rusty fiberglass body vet
    🌝 Joking

  7. Blindmarc

    As was stated above, the birdcage would be my biggest worry with the water damage on the inside. All the rest is easy enough to get through after market. Wouldn’t pay much more than current bid.

  8. Aidan F

    It’s so tempting

  9. mike d

    OK, I have to admit ignorance, exactly, what is a ” birdcage”? , it is ” only” on ‘Vettes ? I have seen it over and over, and was hoping sometime some sort of an unintentional somebody would describe one, and it hasn’t happened.. Thankx in advance !!

    • Jamie P

      OK, think of the birdcage what does it do to the bird? Does it protect the bird? In this case it is protecting the driver

    • tje


  10. Craig

    I’d love to have it if the birdcage is good, and just build it into the Corvette that should have been.

  11. Larry

    What an ambitious project above, I’ve never seen a C2 taken that far down to the birdcage. We did a frame off resto on a 65 396/425HP 4 speed coupe about ten years ago. It used a Holley #3124 carb. We paid a fortune for one. Only used on this year with this engine. I believe some Shelbys also used that same carb. If anyone is thinking of the 75 above, check the frame kick ups just in front of the rear tires. Notorious for rotting out. You can buy aftermarket frame pieces to section in, but probably not worth it on a 75. I believe C3’s have bottomed out and prices may rise in the future.

  12. MikeK

    First clue it was probably a ’75? The nose emblem. That red starburst style was only used one year.

    • Jamie P

      Second clue was the none split rear bumper

  13. D

    I would take it if the fundage was available

  14. David Lord

    Huge restoration project. Sometimes free is too much $.

  15. Squanto

    $10,000 (Minimum) Corvette when finished. If you have the money, save yourself two years and go buy one. You can drive it this summer instead of upsetting your wife.

  16. Doug Towsley

    Bidding ended at $3000 which is probably about right. This looks like it COULD have potential as a fun project but of course might be a nightmare. But at that price looks like a good Risk/reward scenario If I were in the market. I agree about the earlier Chrome bumper versions. I suppose somebody must make a conversion? Still… It looks like fun. Always wanted one of these body styles (With earlier body work). Luckily for me wrong side of the US.

  17. Doug Towsley

    Okay, tech ???? (Thanks for the excellent visual on the bird cage, never saw one stripped like that) How does one go about CHECKING a Bird cage? Clearly they can corrode or dented,, But how do you verify condition? Is there access ports? Measurements? Stick an Awl or pick thru certain points and see if rotted?
    I am sure that would be helpful tech for potential owners to know.
    As to the water inside…. Might be a flood or Hurricane car. -OR- Simply a leaking T top since they almost always leak.


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