1963 Corvette Stingray History

The 1963 Corvette Stingray was a step forward for the brand in many senses. It managed to innovate the market with an intricate design, novel at the time, and with its impressive handling prowess. Even though no horsepower specs have been changed, the Corvette’s acceleration was still better than its previous models because the 1963 was lighter and more aerodynamic. Nevertheless, it was welcomed with a lot of enthusiasm, a lot of accolades and a lot of positive reactions. This Corvette would also parade its newly received name – the Stingray. The new C2 look, with its new pointy nose and shark-like features, would forever go into the sports car history books as one of the most admired Corvette body styles of its time!

1963 Corvette Stingray

Source

Among the changes for the 2nd Generation Corvette, noteworthy are the new aerodynamic look, the introduction of a fastback coupe, boosted passenger safety and comfort, and a new independent suspension applicable both for the rear and the front. No matter how you look at them, all of these modifications were executed in the best interest of the drivers and the passengers. Specifically because of how well GM catered to the requirements of Corvette enthusiasts everywhere, many consider the 1963 Corvette Stingray to be the most advanced sports car of all time.

Specifications

MECHANICAL

Specification Convertible Coupe
Wheelbase 98 inches (2.489 m) 98 inches (2.489 m)
Overall length 175.2 inches (4.450 m) 175.3 inches (4.453 m)
Overall width 69.6 inches (1.768 m) 69.6 inches (1.768 m)
Overall height 49.8 inches (1.265 m)
Front tread 56.3 inches (1.430 m) 56.3 inches (1.430 m)
Rear tread 57.0 inches (1.448 m) 57.0 inches (1.448 m)
Frame Full-length ladder type with five cross members and separate body
Ground Clearance 5 inches (12.7 cm) 5 inches (12.7 cm)
Front suspension Independent; upper and lower A-arms; unequal-length wishbones; coil springs; anti-roll bar;tubular shocks
Rear suspension Independent with fixed differential; nine leaf springs; lateral struts and universally-jointed axle shafts; radius arms and direct-acting shock absorbers
Steering Saginaw recirculating ball, 17:1 ratio, 3.4 turns to lock
Rear axle type Hypoid semi-floating
Brakes Hydraulic, duo-servo, self-adjusting with sintered iron linings and cast iron drums
Front Drum Diameter 11×2.75 inches
Rear Drum Diameter 11×2.0 inches
Total swept area 134.9 square inches
Wheels 15″ 5-lug steel disc
Standard rear axle ratio 3.70:1
Optional rear axle ratio 4.11:1, 4.56:1, 3.08:1, 3.38:1, 3.55:1, 4.11:1, 4.56:1

1963-chevrolet-corvette-convertible

ENGINE

Feature Base Engine RPO L75 RPO L76 RPO L84
Type V-8, Overhead Valve
Block Cast Iron Block
Displacement 327 cid
Bore & Stroke 4.00 x 3.25
Compression ratio 10.50:1 11.25:1
Brake horsepower 250 @ 4400 rpm 300@5000 rpm 340@6000 360@6000 rpm
Torque 350 lb-ft @ 2800 rpm 360 lb-ft @ 3200 rpm 344 lb-ft @ 4000 rpm 352 lb-ft @ 4000 rpm
Main bearing five
Valve lifters Hydraulic Mechanical valve lifters & Duntov camshaft
Carburetor Carter four-barrel Type WCFB Model 3501S Carter aluminum Type AFB* four-barrel Ram-Jet Fuel Injection

* AFB – Aluminum Four Barrel

63 Stingray - Polished and New

Source

1963 Corvette Stingray History

The 1963 Corvette Stingray, used as reference, the basic concept of the classic 1953 Corvette, though there were some notable additions that set it apart. The frame had a new, all-wheel suspension. The coupe body was also new, sporting a distinctive two-piece rear window.

Having just entered the era of the second generation of Corvettes, outlines for a new Corvette started materializing in 1959 when a clay model of the newest idea was molded. It’s safe to assume that this is the origin of the 1963 Corvette Stingray due to the similarities in their appearance. Actual production of the then-called Corvette Stingray was rushed after the release of the Jaguar XKE. The finished product was displayed for the public on September 28th 1962.

1963 Corvette Stingray Split Window Coupe

Corvette Split-Window Coupe

Larry Shinoda and Bill Mitchell are the duo widely credited for the appearance of the final version of the 1963 Corvette. The latter also envisioned the Split-Window Coupe model, whose dual split rear window became one of the most iconic views in the history of sports car industry.

This 1963 Corvette Stingray begins with a central hood bulge, continues across the roof, and “slams” the rear window into the car’s tail. Because the coupe was so lowly slung, the designers needed to come up with a method to ease exits and entries in and out of the car. As a result, they had the tops of the doors cut into the roof. As far as the iconic rear window goes, the shots were called by Mitchell, who wanted to emphasize the ridge.

1963-chevrolet-corvette-stingray-gold

The 1963 Coupe wasn’t the best for storage purposes since there was no lid trunk installed on the car. Albeit, a hatchback was briefly considered, as inspired by main competitor at the time Jaguar XKE, but they were forced to ditch the idea because of financial reasons. Instead, all of the coupe’s storage options come from the inside, behind the seats.

1963-corvette-interior-storage

Corvette Z06 Option

It was difficult for GM to craft a speedy car ready to hit the racetracks. Not because they couldn’t do it, but because at the time, they lived under a racing ban that didn’t let them further pursue their talent as race car manufacturers. Regardless, because of the success of the 1963 Corvette Stingray, Zora Arkus-Duntov realized that it would’ve been a missed opportunity not to see one track-ready model driven through the factory gates.

And this is how several Corvette enthusiasts managed to get their hands on the Z06 option. It came equipped with a fuel-injected 327ci engine, four-speed transmission, and heavy-duty brakes composed of drums with sintered-metallic linings.

1963-corvette-stingray-z06

Engine Options

Engine choices didn’t differ from the options presented for the previous year’s version. Drivers had the base motor to start with, displaying a 250 horsepower engine with 350 lb/ft of torque. The primary optional engine was the L75 engine, though drivers still had the choice to opt for either a L76 or L84 as well.

Popular Options

There weren’t any extravagant tuning and design choices for the 1963 Corvette Stingray. The most popular choices were leather seats, air conditioning, power steering, and power brakes.

Performance

How does the 1963 Corvette live up in terms of performance? The first performance test occurred within a brand new 1963 Stingray and the final reports described an acceleration of 0-60-mph times of 5.8 seconds. Moreover, the same test reported that fuel consumption stood around 14.1 mpg overall.

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