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Corvette Anniversary

Gayle Anderson was live in Los Angeles at the Petersen Automotive Museum for the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the Chevrolet Corvette, “America’s Sports Car,” with a tribute on Friday and Saturday, March 1st and 2nd and a special Corvette exhibit on display through Sunday, March 31st.  

The Chevrolet Corvette made its debut in 1953 at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City as the first mass-produced car to feature an all fiberglass body. This lightweight material gave designers greater flexibility in creating the curvy design of the Corvette, but also made the vehicle faster than cars made out of steel. After its premiere, 300 models were built in Flint, Michigan that year. All 1953 Corvettes were white convertibles with red interiors and black canvas tops. While Corvette sales initially lagged behind its European competitors, improvements to the car in subsequent years refined its performance. The second generation Corvette C2 from 1963-67, known as the Sting Ray, was known for its speed and sleek, sporty design. By the third generation, which lasted from 1968-1982, the C3 became known as the Stingray. According to data from Men’s Fitness, the 58,307 sales of the vehicle in 1979 remains the Corvette’s annual sales record. The C4 sportscar from 1983 to 1996 was the iconic poster car of the 1980s, known for its high-performance and great fuel economy. The C5, Corvette’s fifth generation model from 1997-2004, weighed almost 100 pounds less than its predecessor thanks to its hydroformed box frame and a new, aluminum-valve, small-block engine. Further advancements in the sixth generation Corvette, from 2005 to 2013, made it even  lighter, while improving its aerodynamic drag. After 60 years of innovation, the 2014 Corvette Stingray blends technology and performance in a high-quality sportscar. The history of the Chevrolet Corvette is courtesy History.com and Samantha Sutton of Men’s Fitness. 

In honor of the Corvette’s anniversary, the Petersen will host three panels throughout the two days, each for a cost of $25. 

  • The Corvette Values Seminar on Friday, March 1st at 10:30 a.m. will investigate what Corvettes are worth in today’s market and how the vehicle will perform as an investment. Speakers include Rob Sass, from Hagerty Collector Car Insurance; Mike Yager, Founder of Mid America Motorsports; “Corvette Mike” Vietro; and John Kraman, Consignment Director for Mecum Collector Car Auctions. 
  • The Racing Panel Discussion at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, March 1st, will discuss the car’s illustrious motorsports history and will feature several iconic figures from Corvette racing history including drivers Dick Guldstrand, Doug Hooper, Bill Krause and Paul Reinhart. 
  • The Corvette Restoration Panel on Saturday, March 2nd at 10:30 a.m. will cover restoration tips and techniques from Jeff Reade, NCRS judge and Owner of American Motoring Memories, and NCRS judges and restorers, Ken and Gary Nabers of Nabers Motors. 

The 60th Anniversary Gala is Friday, March 1st at 6:00 p.m. For $125 per person, attendees will enjoy cocktails, dinner and a live memorabilia auction. In addition, the Gala will host a panel discussion on the topic of “What does the Corvette mean to you?” Moderated by popular TV personality, Bill Stephens, other speakers include Mike Yager, Founder of Mid American Motorsports; specialty vehicle manufacturer, Reeves Callaway; Randy Leffingwell, author; Art Spong, Group Brand Manager for Brand Quality for GM Performance Cars and Corvette; and Ken Kayser, a Chevrolet Manufacturing Engineering Manager at GM Powertrain. The featured speaker of the evening is Kirk Bennion, the Exterior Design Manager of the Corvette C7 Stingray, who will unveil the west coast debut of the vehicle. 

The Corvette Car Day Show on Saturday, March 2nd, is FREE and open to the public and will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The cost for participants is $60 per car and includes two free museum admissions, free parking, a goodie bag, and a limited edition medallion created by Mid America Motorworks to commemorate the event. Register your Corvette or buy tickets online at Corvette Day or call (323) 964-6325. Some events have limited availability and will sell out.  

In addition to the events, a special Corvette exhibit showcasing Corvettes from every generation along with significant vehicles from history will be on display through Sunday, March 31st. Notable Corvettes include the:

  • 1953 EX-122:the first Corvette shown in the public
  • 956 SR2: an experimental race car
  • 1959 Corvette Italia by Scaglietti: an Italian masterpiece rendered in aluminum
  • 1960 CERV I: the first mid-engine prototype
  • 1963 Grand Sport and a 1968 “Sundowner” Bonneville Racer: driven by many famous racers including Dick Doane, John Mecom, Alan Sevadjian, Auggie Pabst, Jim Hall, A.J. Foyt and John Cannon
  • 1964 “World’s Fair” Corvette: customized by GM for the New York World’s Fair

Event sponsors include Mid America Motorworks, Hagerty Collector Car Insurance, Corvette Mike, Intercity Lines and Fender Guitar. Proceeds from the “CORVETTE ANNIVERSARY” activities will go toward supporting the Petersen Automotive Museum’s educational programming.  

The Petersen Automotive Museum is open Tuesday through Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., with the exception of major holidays such as Memorial Day and Labor Day. The Museum is closed on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Years Day. Discovery Center hours are from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Admission prices are $12 for adults, $8 for seniors (62 and over), $5 for students with I.D. and active military with I.D., $3 for children (ages 5-12), and FREE for children under 5 and Museum members. Save $1 on general adult admission when you purchase e-tickets online and print right from your home at Petersen

Museum parking is FREE for the first 30 minutes and then $2 for each additional 30 minutes with a maximum cost of $12. 1 hour validation is available with a purchase of $20 or more at the Museum Store or at the Johnny Rockets located in the Museum lobby.  

For more information:
Friday  March 1st
Saturday, March  2nd
60th Anniversary Corvette Celebration

Petersen Automotive Museum
6060 Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 930-CARS (2277)

Now through March 31, 2013
“Corvette Exhibit”
Petersen Automotive Museum
6060 Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 930-CARS (2277)

If you have questions, please feel free to call Gayle Anderson at 323-460-5732 or e-mail Gayle at Gayle.Anderson@KTLA.com

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This story has 3 updates
Morning News
02/28/13

Corvette Anniversary – 2014 C7

Gayle Anderson was live in Los Angeles at the Petersen Automotive Museum for the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the Chevrolet Corvette, “America’s Sports Car,” with a tribute on Friday and Saturday, March 1st and 2nd and a special Corvette exhibit on display through Sunday, March 31st.

Morning News
02/28/13

Corvette Anniversary-The Classics

Gayle Anderson was live in Los Angeles at the Petersen Automotive Museum for the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the Chevrolet Corvette, “America’s Sports Car,” with a tribute on Friday and Saturday, March 1st and 2nd and a special Corvette exhibit on display through Sunday, March 31st.

Morning News
02/28/13

Corvette Anniversary-1953 EX-122

Gayle Anderson was live in Los Angeles at the Petersen Automotive Museum for the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the Chevrolet Corvette, “America’s Sports Car,” with a tribute on Friday and Saturday, March 1st and 2nd and a special Corvette exhibit on display through Sunday, March 31st.

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