1963 Chevy Corvette: The Sting Ray Makes Its Debut
The Chevy Corvette first debuted in 1953 as a concept car at the GM Motorama display at the New York Auto Show. It was well received enough by attendees to warrant production. And by 1963, the general public was ready for a second generation of America's newest sportscar. PHOTOS: See More of the 1963 Chevy Corvette Pilot Line Sting Ray
The all-new 1963 Corvette was the first that bore the Sting Ray name, and it showed off a smaller body with new aerodynamic styling by Larry Shinoda along with engineering that made it an instant hit. Owners waited months to get their hands on this car, with production for the year topping 20,000 units for the first time in the car's history. This was a true sportscar with a four-inch shorter wheelbase and independent rear suspension from Zora Arkus-Duntov, and everyone wanted one in their driveway.
Styling cues included hidden headlamps, non-functioning hood vents, and a split rear window that would only last for one production year after owners complained about visibility issues. This year also marked the introduction of a coupe to the Corvette line. There was also an available electronic ignition that was first offered on select 1963 Pontiacs.
PHOTOS: See More of the 1963 Corvette Z06
A Z06 competition package was another available option. This added things like a stiffer suspension, and larger multi-segment lined brakes with finned drums. Truth be told, very few opted for this package.
There were four 327-cubic inch engine choices offered for the model year. The L84 put out 360 horsepower and gave the new Sting Ray an impressive 0-60 time of under six seconds. Just one year later, the 1964 Corvette would put that 360 horsepower to shame with a 375 horsepower engine.
The Sting Ray name went defunct in 1982, but in 2013, Chevy brought back the nameplate after a near 30 year hiatus for the C7 Corvette. And as they say, the rest is history...
PHOTOS: See More of the 1963 Corvette Sting Ray Convertible