1994 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible - $15,900
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The color combination is timeless and sophisticated, making this a Corvette for grown-ups, and it suits the C4’s dual performance/luxury attitude just fine.

We remain convinced that the single biggest bang for the buck in the collector car market is a C4 Corvette. If there’s one car that does everything well, it’s this 1994 Corvette convertible. Bulletproof reliability, very entertaining performance, comfortable road manners, inexpensive maintenance, great looks, and strong club support. What more could you ask for, especially with a price tag equal to a four-year-old Hyundai? If you’re sitting on the sidelines waiting to be able to afford to get into the game, I would argue that now is the time and THIS is the car.

With just over 37,000 original miles, you know this lovely Polo Green Corvette was never a daily driver and has never seen winter weather. That’s the life of most Corvettes—protected toys—but this one has been especially well-kept by a guy who loved it almost from day one. The color combination is timeless and sophisticated, making this a Corvette for grown-ups, and it suits the C4’s dual performance/luxury attitude just fine. That’s factory-applied paint and the car has never been bumped or touched up, so everything fits just the way the guys at Bowling Green intended. By 1994, build quality on the ‘Vette was pretty darned good and these doors close with that kerCHUNK sound that is familiar to C4 owners and very reassuring to everyone else. The giant clamshell fits well and snugs down without slamming and the convex rear bumper hasn’t developed any of the usual stress cracks. The paint, which is approaching its 25th birthday, still shines up nicely, and while it’s not perfect, you’ll have to loo pretty closely to see any of the flaws. The chin spoiler has a few scuffs, there are a few chips from stray rocks being thrown by the big tires, but overall, it’ll be hard to find a better-preserved vintage ‘Vette for this price.

Do the patented C4 flop and get into the contoured sport seat and you’ll find yourself surrounded with supple tan leather. Against the dark green paint, it’s just gorgeous, and we find the combination of black and tan surfaces inside the Corvette to be quite tastefully done. There’s the usual wear on the outer bolster of the driver’s chair, which is all but unavoidable in these cars, and we’re happy to see an aftermarket sill protector which has kept the carpet from meeting the same fate. Embroidered Corvette emblems in the seat backs are a nice touch and there are tailored floor mats that fit in the C4’s unique footwells. Of course, as Chevy’s top-of-the-line car and GM’s ultimate halo product, everything was standard on the Corvette, including powerful A/C, power windows, locks, mirrors, and seats, cruise control, and a great-sounding AM/FM/cassette/CD stereo that works equally well top up or top down (note that the power antenna seems to work only intermittently). The combination of analog and digital gauges give you a clear view of what’s going on under the hood and there’s a trip computer that can review a variety of engine functions. And you know the Corvette engineers were serious when they gave you an oil temperature gauge as well as the usual dials. The tan convertible top is in excellent condition with a heated glass rear window, and you’ll quickly master the easy process of stowing it in a matter of seconds.

The Corvette LT1 V8 is legendary for its performance, durability, and economy. Seriously, if you want one engine that does everything well and never asks for anything in return, this is it. The last of the first-gen 350s, it delivers a nice, round 300 horsepower, enough to make the C4 feel lighting quick around town. Thanks to a long list of innovative features, it has also proven itself to be virtually indestructible no matter how hard you use it. There are hundreds of upgrades available, but this one is completely stock right down to the air filter and mufflers, which is how you want to buy your second-hand Corvette. That suggests there’s been no racing, no hack mechanic work, and no abuse, and the way it drives seems to confirm this assessment. It starts instantly, idles smoothly hot or cold, and pulls with authority at almost any speed. The engine bay shows quite well, too, with no signs of harsh weather use or questionable workmanship, just original parts and OEM hardware everywhere you look. There are no demerits in the way this car runs and drives.

Part of the reason why this car feels so punchy is the 700R4 4-speed automatic overdrive transmission, which is always ready to serve up a quick downshift and rip around the tach. Everyone whines and complains when they see a ‘Vette with an automatic, but there’s a reason it has been standard equipment for more than two decades. Chances are, you want an automatic Corvette and you will quickly find that there is no downside to owning one—it’s just as fast, just as efficient, and just as capable as a 6-speed car with the added bonus of being able to simply point and shoot. Few powertrains work better than this. The Corvette’s suspension is also capable, and by 1994, they’d pretty much excised the harshness demons that inhabited the earlier cars, creating a sports car that can slice through the corners without abusing its occupants when they’re just cruising. Massive disc brakes with ABS are probably more than you’ll ever need and the exhaust has just the right combination of bark and tone, so it’s quiet on the highway. Fresh 17-inch Torque Thrust wheels look awesome against the green paint and carry fresh 255/40/17 front and 275/40/17 rear performance radials.

Look around and try to find more performance per dollar than this. Add in the desirable color combination, impeccable maintenance, low mileage, and totally stock mechanicals and you get a Corvette that’s ready for another 25 years of fun at a very reasonable price. Call today!

Vehicle: 1994 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible
Price: $15,900
Stock Number: 115052
Mileage: 37,372
VIN: 1G1YY32P0R5120980
Engine: 350 cubic inch V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Gear Ratio: 2.59
Wheelbase: 96.2 inches
Wheels: 17-inch Torque Thrust
Tires: Front: 255/40/17, Rear: 275/40/17 performance radial
Exterior Color: Polo Green
Interior Color: Tan leather
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