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Todays birthday cars:
53 years old
194677S122268

VIN 30867S100148














   
Car Year: 1963
Car's approximate birthday: September 20, 1962
 
Owner: The Bunkie Knudsen Corvette
Country: United States
 
Purchase date: Undefined
Status: Current Owner
 
Nickname: 30867S100148
State: Restored
 
Exterior: Other Color
Interior: Other Color
Softtop: Other Color
Wheels: Other Color
 
Body: Unknown
 
Delivery Dealer Zone: Unknown
Delivery Dealer Code: Unknown
 
Options: RPO Option Percentage
Sold [%]
Sales Price
[$]
  867 Base Corvette Convertible (250hp) 50.76% 4,037.00
  A31 Power Windows 17.39% 59.20
  J50 Power Brakes 15.51% 43.05
  Total   1.3691%
(295 Cars)
4,139.25
 
Factory job nr.: Unknown
Export Car: Non Export Car
 
Car history:
02/18/2014

The Bunkie Knudsen Corvette
1 of 4 Corvettes with this side exhaust
Fuel injected 327 CI V-8
4 speed transmission
Power brakes and windows
2 bar spinner knock-off wheels
Serial No. 00148, September 1962 birth date
Discovered in the early 1980s
Restored by Werner Meier
Participated in multiple Bloomington Gold Special Collections
Displayed at Meadowbrook in 1988 and Amelia Island in 2012
Formerly of the Bob McDorman Collection
Crimson Firefrost metallic lacquer with full length White stripe
Custom engine bay with chrome plating and contrasting crinkle finish black paint
Extensively modified interior including custom shift console, 1964-style seats
upholstered with White Naugahyde and Maroon accent stripes, chrome-plated
brass trim plates, crossed-flag emblems, stainless floor grille plates and 1967
style seat belts
Twin-spoke steering wheel and 1964-style instrumentation with color matching dash

At the 1963 New York Auto Show Chevrolet displayed a specially built Corvette Sting Ray convertible incorporating various design concepts conceived at GM Design, most notably a unique interior and prominent chrome-plated side exhaust headers exiting through the front fenders. Its origins reached back to the 1959 Sting Ray racer, which inspired the XP-755 concept car designed by Larry Shinoda and also known as the Mako Shark. The car scored a hit not only with New York Auto Show crowds but with Chevrolet brass as well, particularly Chevrolet Division General Manager Semon Bunkie Knudsen, who arranged for Chevrolet Engineering to build a copy for his personal use.

Like the New York show car, Knudsens personalized Corvette was distinguished by its intricately constructed side exhaust and custom paint, in Knudsens case combining prototype Crimson Firefrost metallic lacquer with a full-length White stripe and White soft top (the car also retains a matching hard top). This combination was mirrored in the extensively modified interior, where a unique custom shift console assembly was flanked by 1964-type seats upholstered with White Naugahyde and Maroon accent stripes. The exquisitely-finished door panels were covered with White Naugahyde trimmed with unique chrome-plated brass trim plates and crossed-flag emblems, and slotted stainless steel floor grille plates - a common feature in GM styling cars of the era - replaced the stock floor mats. The distinctive twin-spoke steering wheel featured two types of wood on the rim, behind which 1964 instrumentation was used in the color-matching dash. The interior was later upgraded with changes to the instrumentation and the addition of 1967 seat belts.

Chevrolet Engineering also went to work under the hood, substituting chrome plating and crinkle-finish Black paint in place of the cast aluminum surfaces on the fuel injected 327 CI small block. The engine bay was also modified to accommodate the special exhaust system, including trimming the heater box for clearance and relocating the battery to the area behind the passenger seat.

The car joined Nova, Corvair and Impala convertibles in Knudsens personal fleet (all of which were finished in the same Crimson Firefrost paint) and became one of Mr. Knudsens daily drivers. After its return to Chevrolet from Knudsens fleet the cars external modifications were removed, including the exhaust system (a stock system was installed but, fortuitously, the internal modifications to accommodate the custom exhaust remained). The car was sold to a designer at Chevrolet Engineering, then passed through a series of ever more neglectful Detroit-area owners. In the early 1980s it was discovered by Corvette collector Wally Abela, in undriveable condition and serving as a scaffold in a garage. Its rear deck was damaged from foot traffic, and the frame, paint and interior were all in need of a complete restoration.

Fortunately, instinct told Abela that the car was something more than just a run-of-the-mill custom Corvette, and he asked famed collector/restorer Werner Meier, who has owned numerous Corvette factory specials, to evaluate his find. After Meier confirmed the cars unique nature, Abela traded a 1971 Corvette to secure its ownership. He soon realized the enormity of restoring all the cars unique features and, in 1984, he turned the car over to Meier, who spent several years returning it to its original state. The project was unusually complex, needing special attention to recreate the custom interior and stainless steel exhaust system, the latter requiring the skills of eight different machine and fabrication facilities and at least a dozen expert craftsmen, including Meiers father, who is a toolmaker, and Chuck Watson of Watson Engineering in Detroit.

In 1988 the restored Knudsen Corvette was completed and displayed at the Meadowbrook Concours d'Elegance, and later at the Hilton Head Concours d'Elegance and Dominos Farm Private Museum. Not surprisingly, it was featured several times in the Bloomington Gold Special Collection, and was on constant display at the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky from its opening in 1994 until 2001. In 2003 the car was purchased by Bob McDorman, owner of the famous Bob McDorman Collection. It resided there until 2010, when it was purchased from the McDorman Collection by a private collector before transferring to the ownership of Illinois collector Davis Nelsens Acacia Collection. Most recently, the Bunkie Knudsen Corvette was invited to and participated in the 2012 Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance.

An authentic factory special accompanied by extensive ownership history, the Bunkie Knudsen 1963 Corvette will be offered for sale Saturday, April 12 at the Mecum Houston 2014 Auction.
 
For Sale: No

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