The 1959 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray concept car was based on the tubular steel chassis 1957 Corvette SS racing car that was abandoned after the 1957 Sebring 12 hours as a result of an agreement between members of the Automobile Manufacturers Association (AMA) not to build factory developed racing cars.
Vice President of GM Styling William (Bill) L Mitchell is credited with designing and building the Stingray Concept Car featuring a fibreglass body which weighed in at 2,200 lbs around 1,000 lbs lighter than a contemporary production Corvette.
The one off concept was entered by Bill in numerous races from at least April 1959 to at least October 1960 mostly for Dick Thompson and a couple of races for John Fitch, by early 1960 Dick had clocked up several class BM wins.
Powered originally by a fuel injected 4.6 litre / 283 cui which was good for 315 hp at 6,200 rpm the car was used as a test bed for a four speed manual transmission once it’s racing days were over. Today the car which resides General Motors Design Center has a 375 hp 5.5 litre / 327 cui motor fitted.
Styling of the Stingray Concept Car heavily influenced the styling of 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray production car. The strong line around the mid rift would become a feature on many vehicles of the 1960’s the Chevrolet Corvair, Alfa Romeo GTV 2000, almost the entire 1960’s BMW range, the Hillman Imp / Singer Chamoise and NSU Prinz to name but a few.
This particular replica which I have seen at Silverstone many times over the years appears to be based on a 1977 Chevrolet (Corvette ?) chassis and is powered by a 5.4 litre 283 cui engine.
Hope you have enjoyed today’s Concept edition of ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’ and that you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !