Only remaining ’83 gets featured spot at Corvette museum

1983 Corvettes moves to museum's 'gateway' entrance area | National Corvette Museum photo
1983 Corvettes moves to museum’s ‘gateway’ entrance area | National Corvette Museum photo

The only surviving 1983 Chevrolet Corvette finally has its own place of prominence at the National Corvette Museum, thanks to a grant from a family foundation.

The museum announced that the ’83 Corvette, which had been among the cars displayed with the Skydome when a sinkhole opened last year, has been moved and cleaned and given a featured placement in the Gateway of the Museum area.

The Dyer Family Foundation, based in Fresno, California and founded in memory of the late Calvin and Frances Dyer, “both Corvette enthusiasts,” the museum news release notes, funded the move and Final Finish, Adam’s Polishes and Heartland Media did the display, and they cleaned and revitalized the car.

“We now have an eye-catching showcase for this historical American sports car,” museum facilities and display manager Bob Hellmann was quoted in the news release.

The 1983 model year was the 30th anniversary for the Corvette, but issues with the car’s development and production meant the C4 (fourth-generation) car wouldn’t be launched until the 1984 model year.

However, according to a video that is part of the new 1983 Corvette display, Dave McLellan, Corvette chief engineer, notes that, “We were trying to figure out how to bring the car back to date in all aspects. There was new technology that hadn’t been used in Chevrolet or in any automobile yet.”

Rather than try to deal with the federal certification process late in the model year, GM decided to skip the ’83 Corvette, although 43 cars were produced for testing, including crash testing. All of those cars but one were destroyed. The survivor — No. 23 — is the car on display at the museum.

The museum, located in Bowling Green, Kentucky, remains open to visitors while repairs continue within the Skydome.

One thought on “Only remaining ’83 gets featured spot at Corvette museum”

  1. Saw a 1983 Corvette sold at Corvette Expo in Knoxville Tennessee around 1983 or 84. Had a friend at the time who was interested in it but for a dumb reason we couldn’t talk him into it. I believe it had been used for a test vehicle because it had 2 holes drilled into the rear floor for carrying ballast during testing. Having been a test driver at the time I recognized it.

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