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Model Year Highlights:

  • Aluminum radiators became standard and featured a new crossflow design, however it should be noted that because production of the aluminum radiators was delayed, some 1961 Corvettes were built with the older style copper radiators from 1960.
  • All optional engines had cast alloy valve covers featuring seven fins, while the base engine came equipped with painted steel valve covers.
  • Exhaust systems exited underneath the rearend instead of through the rear bumper in previous model years.
1961 Corvette Options and Production
RPO Description Price Production   RPO Description Price Production
867 Base Convertible $3,934.00 10,939   440 Two-Tone Paint Combination $16.15 3,368
101 Heater $102.25 9,316   468 283ci, 270hp Engine (2x4 carbs.) $182.95 2,827
102 AM Radio, Signal Seeking $137.75 9,316   469 283ci, 245hp Engine (2x4 carbs.) $150.65 1,175
242 Positive Crankcase Ventilation $5.40 NA   473 Power Operated Folding Top $161.40 442
276 Wheels, 15x5.5 $0.00 337   675 Positraction Rear Axle $43.05 6,915
290 Whitewall Tires, 6.70x15 $31.55 9,780   685 4-Speed Manual Transmission. $188.30 5,328
313 Powerglide Automatic Transmission $199.10 1,458   686 Metallic Brakes $26.90 920
353 283ci, 275hp Engine (fuel inj.) $484.20 118   687 Heavy Duty Brakes and Susp. $333.60 119
354 283ci, 315hp Engine (fuel inj.) $484.20 1,462   1408 Blackwall Tires, 6.70x15 $15.75 NA
419 Auxiliary Hardtop $236.75 5,680   1625 24 Gallon Fuel Tank $161.40 NA
426 Power Windows $59.20 698          
Total Production (all convertibles):  10,939

Color Options
RPO Exterior Ditzler # Dupont # RM # Interior Soft Top Production
NA Tuxedo Black NA NA NA Red/Black/Blue/Fawn White/Black 1,340
501A Fawn Beige NA NA NA Red/Black/Fawn White/Black 1,363
502A Jewel Blue NA 4143-L NA Black/Blue White/Black 855
506A Roman Red NA NA NA Black/Red White/Black 1,794
509A Sateen Silver NA NA NA Blue/Black/Red White/Black 747
510A Ermine White NA NA NA Blue/Black/Red/Fawn Black/White 3,178

Two-Tone Paint (RPO 440)
Color Production
Roman Red / White 954
Honduras Maroon / White 647
Ermine White / Silver 385
Fawn Beige / White 358
Tuxedo Black / Silver 429
Jewel Blue / White 419
Sateen Silver / White 159

Interior Color Codes
RPO Color Production
NA Black 3,487
490B Blue 1,331
NA Red 4,459
NA Fawn 1,662

Performance Numbers
Magazine GM Spec. Sports Car Illus. Motor Trend
Pub. Date NA Dec. 1960 Sep. 1961
Engine NA NA 283 ci / 230 hp / single carb
283 ci / 315 hp / fuel inj.
Axle NA 3.70 NA
Transmission NA NA NA
0-30 mph NA 2.6 sec NA
0-40 mph NA 3.8 sec NA
0-50 mph NA 4.6 sec NA
0-60 mph NA 6.0 sec 8.3 sec
7.4 sec
0-70 mph NA 7.9 sec NA
0-80 mph NA NA NA
0-90 mph NA NA NA
0-100 mph NA 14.2 NA
1/4 Mile (sec/mph) NA 15.5/106.0 NA
Top Speed NA NA NA
Braking NA NA NA
Handling NA NA NA