Corvettes in SA

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ZA Perana
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Corvettes in SA

Post by ZA Perana » Mon 20 Aug 2018, 07:28

One thing I have noticed that in a sense a Corvette could be considered as "exotic" in SA they seem to have very limited following in SA. Sure, there is a Corvette club but generally, in CT at least you don't see many of them around and when they do come onto the market they sit and sit and sit.

Is it because of LHD or are they seem as neither a muscle car not exotic enough?
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Re: Corvettes in SA

Post by johan wepener » Mon 20 Aug 2018, 09:56

ZA Perana wrote:
Mon 20 Aug 2018, 07:28
One thing I have noticed that in a sense a Corvette could be considered as "exotic" in SA they seem to have very limited following in SA. Sure, there is a Corvette club but generally, in CT at least you don't see many of them around and when they do come onto the market they sit and sit and sit.

Is it because of LHD or are they seem as neither a muscle car not exotic enough?
It is all about human perception. Sometimes human perception is without any merit at all . But you cannot fight human perception.

For instance, two identical houses opposite each other in the same road. House A is situated in an area more sought after than

than house B. House A will fetch a higher price that house B. That is how it works.

Many vehicles on our roads are extremely good and even won "Car of the Year" award. That does not make those vehicles

good sellers. Not at all. A badge on a bonnet plays an important role. Due to human perception.

This perception thing is to be found in all spheres of life, very interesting but also many times unexplainable.

The Corvette is , from my perception a good looking car with serious performance abilities built by a trustworthy old

manufacturer of vehicles and it's V8 engines are sought after.

Just as a matter of interest, how does a Corvette compare in the USA with other exotics?

Johan
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jlebenon
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Re: Corvettes in SA

Post by jlebenon » Mon 20 Aug 2018, 17:25

Corvette's are the best value in South Africa ... I drive a mint c4 corvette it was like new and they were asking 250k ... Price of a used single cab bakkie or a hammered VZ lumina ... Rediculous
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bmwmaniac
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Re: Corvettes in SA

Post by bmwmaniac » Mon 20 Aug 2018, 19:00

i know of 2 red c4's in my area, both red 8O
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IndianaJones
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Re: Corvettes in SA

Post by IndianaJones » Mon 20 Aug 2018, 21:10

Perhaps there are a couple of issues at play with Corvettes.

How many Corvettes have you seen in popular movie franchises, like Fast & Furious? And even earlier, in the original A-Team, the hero car was the GMC van, not the Face's Corvette. It just isn't on Joe Public’s radar in the way a Mustang, Camaro or Charger is.

Then there is the fact that it has a fibreglass body, which might be off-putting to some. Perhaps not Detroit steel enough. Don’t know whether it might be a particularly challenging material for restorers or spray-painters.

Another factor is that they were the premium model in Chevrolet’s line-up, thus the most expensive, and not the volume seller other models were.

Which generation you are referring to, might also be an indicator. There are quite a few 1st gen Corvette’s in SA, and I think they command a fair bit of coin, and thus not accessible to a lot of people. Most of them were probably imported in the last couple of years, as they precede the 1965 or 40 year import regulation cut-off, and it is a very glamorous, perhaps timeless design.
Can’t think of the top of my head of any C2’s (Split window type), as they are probably uber expensive in the US as well. C3’s there are quite a few in SA, as I think they might have been a popular import when they were new (late 70s/early 80s), although not as much as the Camaro and Firebird of the era, also reflected in movies of the era. C4’s could also be had in SA, imported by Williams Hunt at the time, if I recall correctly. I think they can be very good buy, but then again this is probably also the most affordable model of Corvette in the USA. Which is also why they are very often used as suspension & drivetrain donors for hot rod builds. C5 and newer models are probably only a handful off, as they would have been influenced by the LHD rule.

The bulk of Corvette’s in South Africa must be C3’s and C4’s, and I think both of them have the 80s stigma attached, where 80s things are not yet quite as collectable as earlier models, and still a little bit out of “fashion”. Or perhaps Saffas just don’t have any memory of them, as no one bought them when they were new, both because import tariffs must have been sky high then, and we had our own range of performance models (XR8, 745i, etc), which are sought after now, and we had good access to luxury European sporting cars, which are generally considered to have better handling and better performance than Smog-equipped American cars of the time, thus Saffas have no memories of them now, to make them as in demand as other similar classic cars.

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Re: Corvettes in SA

Post by Jason » Sun 26 Aug 2018, 21:30

Here in the States, the C3 Vettes up to 1974 are very collectable. 1974 was the last year for the 454 V8. 1975-1982 are starting to appreciate but those will never reach the collectable status of the earlier cars due to the low-performance engines and the 'disco' era image (men with permed hair, unbuttoned shirts, lots of jewellery, and skin-tight pants).

C4s have a reputation of poor build quality in the early years...lots of squeaks and rattles; cross-fire injection V8 had drivability issues; the DNE supplied 4+3 manual transmission was known to fail frequently and was very expensive to repair. The later year models were better sorted and could run with many of the Euro exotics on the track but the cars still had the reputations of being 'cheap'. the 1996 Grand Sport is collectable as are the 1990-95 ZR-1 which had the Mercury Marine built, DOHC 5.7 V8 and 6-spd manual ZF transmission.

C5, C6 have the reputation of being well built, poor-man supercars but are not collectable yet....too new.

C7s can be optioned to the point of being brutal track day cars but I think car culture has changed to the point that the general public doesn't even notice. Most guys you see driving the C7 are 50+ (my age!) and (according to my teenagers) 'look' like they are cruising for school girls. So, the youngsters that should be daydreaming about owning a Vette may have lost all interest in the model.

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