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1963 Corvette Production and Performance Numbers


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Model Year Highlights
Exterior:
  • This is the first time a Corvette Coupe is offered to the public and the body and chassis of the Corvette have been completely redesigned for this model year.
  • 1963 model used fake fender louvers, hood louvers, and vents on the side of the outer roof panels.
  • Only year for the split-window design.
  • First year for hidden headlights.
  • Stainless steel trim can be found ahead of the vend on the side roof panels.
  • A roller-type catch was used for the gas filler door. Later production models used nylon slide catches.
  • Headlight buckets were composed of fiberglass but later models were equipped with metal headlight buckets
  • New, taller outside rearview mirror with a shorter base was introduced during the middle of production.
  • This was the first year that the knockoff wheel was offered as an option. Due to aluminum porosity problems, the sale of a 1963 Corvette equipped with the knockoff wheels has not been confirmed, however the wheels were sold over the counter.
  • New available colors: Daytona Blue, Riberside Red, Saddle Tan, Serbring Silver, Silver Blue.
Interior:
  • Earlier 1963 radios were AM seeking and later models came equipped with AM-FM seeking radios.
  • Storage space increased.
  • Instrument panel gauges were round and black faced.
  • 20-gallon fuel tank was new for this year.
  • Dash consisted of a new "twin-cowl" design.
  • New hinged deck emblem filler cap.
Mechanical:
  • The old X-brace frame was replaced by a new ladder-type design.
  • New independent rear suspension.
  • Hydraulic-assist steering was now available.
  • Air conditioning was now available.
  • Power brakes were now available.
  • 4-speed manual transmissions were now manufactured by Muncie instead of Borg-Warner.
  • A new electrical alternator was introduced.

1963 Corvette Options and Production
RPO Description Price Production   RPO Description Price Production
837 Base Coupe $4,038.00 10,594   L76 327ci 340hp Engine $107.60 6,978
867 Base Convertible $4,037.00 10,919   L84 327ci, 360hp Engine - Fuel Injection $430.40 2,610
898 Genuine Leather Seats $80.70 1,114   M20 4-speed Manual Transmission $188.30 17,983
941 Sebring Silver Exterior Paint $80.70 3,516   M35 Powerglide Automatic Transmission $199.10 2,621
A01 Soft Ray Tinted Glass, All Windows $16.15 629   N03 36-Gallon Fuel Tank (Coupe) $202.30 63
A02 Soft Ray Tinted Glass, Windshield $10.80 470   N11 Offroad Exhaust System $37.70 NA
A31 Power Windows $59.20 3,742   N34 Woodgrained Plastic Steering Wheel $16.15 130
C07 Auxiliary Hardtop (Convert.) $236.75 5,739   N40 Power Steering $75.35 3,063
C48 Heater/Defroster Delete -$100.00 124   P48 Cast Aluminum Knock-Off Wheels $322.80 NA
C60 Air Conditioning $421.80 278   P91 Blackwall Tires, 6.70x15 nylon cord $15.70 412
G81 Positraction Rear Axle $43.05 17,554   P92 Blackwall Tires, 6.70x15 rayon cord $31.55 19,383
G91 Special Highway Axle Ratio (3.08:1) $2.20 211   T86 Backup Lamps $10.80 318
J50 Power Brakes $43.05 3,336   U65 AM Radio $137.75 11,368
J65 Sintered Metallic Brakes $37.70 5,310   U69 AM/FM Radio $174.35 9,178
L75 327ci, 300hp Engine $53.80 8,033   Z06 Special Performance Equipment $1,818.45 199
Production:  Coupes: 10,594  Convertibles:  10,919  Total:  21,513

Color Options
RPO Exterior Ditzler # Dupont Lucite # RM # Interior Soft Top Production
900 Tuxedo Black NA NA NA BK-R-S BG-BK-W NA
912 Silver Blue NA NA NA BK-DB BG-BK-W NA
916 Daytona Blue DDL-12696 4395-L A-1539 DB-R-S BG-BK-W 3,475
923 Riverside Red DDL-70961 2931-L A-1138 BK-R-S BG-BK-W 4,612
932 Saddle Tan NA NA NA BK-R-S BG-BK-W NA
936 Ermine White NA NA NA BK-DB-R-S BG-BK-W NA
941 Sebring Silver DDL-32312 867-96417 NA BK-DB-R-S BG-BK-W NA

Soft Top Color
NA Beige 444
NA Black 3,648
NA White 5,728

Performance Review
Magazine GM Spec. RT CL Motor
Pub. Date NA Oct. 1962 Dec. 1962 Dec. 11, 1963
Model NA Convert. Coupe Coupe
Engine NA L84 L75 L84
Axle Ratio NA NA NA NA
Transmission NA Powerglide Auto. Powerglide Auto. 4-Spd. Manual
0-30 mph NA 2.5 sec. 3.0 sec. 3.0 sec.
0-40 mph NA 3.4 sec. 4.2 sec. 4.1 sec.
0-50 mph NA 4.5 sec. 5.6 sec. 5.1 sec.
0-60 mph NA 5.9 sec. 7.2 sec. 6.2 sec.
0-70 mph NA 8.0 sec. 9.8 sec. 8.2 sec.
0-80 mph NA 10.2 sec. 13.0 sec. 10.2 sec.
0-90 mph NA NA NA 13.3 sec.
0-100 mph NA 16.5 sec. 22.9 sec. 15.6 sec.
0-110 mph NA NA NA 19.6 sec.
0-120 mph NA NA NA 23.6 sec.
1/4 Mile (sec/mph) NA 14.9 / 95 15.5 / 86 14.6 sec.
Top Speed NA NA 130 mph NA
Braking NA NA NA NA
Handling NA NA NA NA
Legend: RT - Road and Track, CL - Car Life

Test Notes
Autocar (British Mag.): "...the refinement, particularly in respect of engine and transmission noise, is inferior to that of most of its European competitors and this gives the impression of the car being more powerful than it really is.... The performance is certainly vivid, but if more attention had been given to such items as tire adhesion in the wet and wipers that clear the screen effectively above 80 mph, instead of some [styling] gimmicks which only attempt to give an impression of engineering thought, the Sting Ray would be a better car."

"Judged by the Sing Ray, the American manufacturers are still behind those of Europe when endeavoring to build a car combining real performance and refinement -- rather surprising when their more normal road cars are so good in the latter respect. No doubt the less highly tuned versions would be preferred by the majority of owners and give enough performance."

"Nothing can be seen of the tail through the divided rear window, which makes reversing in confined quarters rather precarious."
Car and Driver: "One glance at the new Corvette tells you that it is faster and sportier than its predecessors. Hiding independent rear suspension under its sculptured tail, the Corvette is now second to no other production sports car in road-holding and is still the most powerful."

"The new all-independent suspension has completely transformed the Corvette in terms of traction and cornering power, but it still has some faults. The standard setup on the test car seemed a bit more suitable for race tracks than for fast back-road motoring. A rigid front anti-roll bar in combination with a relatively stiff transverse leaf spring in the rear reduces the resilience and independence of the suspension of each wheel with the result that even on mildly rough surfaces the car does not feel perfectly stable..."

"There is some understeer but the car has such a tremendous power surplus, even with the next-to-bottom engine option, that the tail can be slung out almost any old time, and after a while throttle steering seems the natural way of aiding the car around a curve."

"As an American car it is unique and it stands out from its European counterparts as having in no way copied them but arrived at the same goal along a different route. Zora Arkus-Duntov summed it up this way: 'For the first time I now have a Corvette I can be proud to drive in Europe.' We understand his feelings and are happy to agree that the Sting Ray is a fine showpiece for the American auto industry, especially since it is produced at a substantially lower price than any foreign...car of comparable performance."

"Luggage space is surprisingly roomy but central window partition ruins rear view."
Car Life: "Tricky, twisting roads are this Corvette's meat...With its new suspension it seems to lock onto them, going precisely where directed and sticking to the tightest corners without the shadow of a doubt. Where the old Corvette had an annoying penchant for swapping ends when cornered vigorously, the new one just sticks and storms. This suspension is the best thing since gumdrops!"

"The bar down the center of the rear window makes it all but impossible to see out via the rearview mirror."
Motor (European Mag.): "...one of the best [gearboxes] we have ever encountered in such a high-performance car. The change is smooth, fast, and astonishingly light, and the synchromesh can only be beaten by the most brutal methods, and then only in the lower two gears."

"In most respects, the Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray is the equal of any GT car to be found on either side of the Atlantic. It falls down on refinement (which is surprising in a model from a country where the most unpretentious cars are notably refined) and wet-road behavior, a shortcoming for which the cure might be [better] tires. The silhouette is good, but some of the styling details both inside and out seem fussy. The car is not free of gimmicks, but the performance needs no flattery, the handling is good, and the brakes superb."
Motor Sport (European Mag.): "The test car was actually a 1963 model but the 1964 models have slight modifications, including the deletion of the central dividing strip in the rear window, which allows some measure of rearward vision."
Motor Trend, May 1963: "The waiting period is at least 60 days, and dealers won't 'deal' a bit on either coupes or roadsters. Both are going for the full sticker price, with absolutely no discount and very little (if any) over-allowance on trade-ins."

"From the important styling and all-around performance angles, the new Sting Ray is an even greater car than its predecessors. But for a car that sells in the $4500-6000 range, it dosn't reflect the degree of quality control we feel it should."

"The rear window on the coupe is designed more for looks than practicality, and any decent view to the rear will have to be through an exterior side-view mirror."
Road and Track: "Whether you slam the car through an S-bend at 85 or pop the clutch at 5000 rpm at the drag strip, the result is...great gripping gobs of traction. As a purely sporting car, the new Corvette will know few peers.... It has proved, in its 'stone-age form,' the master of most production-line competitors; in its nice, shiny new concept it ought to be nearly unbeatable."

"Our only complaint about the interior was in the coupe, where all we could see in the...mirror was that silly bar splitting the rear window down the middle."
Sports Car Graphic: "We were a bit spoiled, perhaps by testing the prototype first, as it had all the heavy-duty suspension items included and added up to a fantastic improvement over the '62 that was similarly equipped. The showroom model can't, quite naturally, perform the same tricks on a racing circuit, but it can come darn close. The ride and handling are great. We won't elaborate on how great; you've got to drive one to believe it." -- Jerry Titus