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1996 Corvette - Model Information

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Note:  All information and pictures on this page are courtesy of GM Media Archives. Rev. 09/25/95

The 1996 Corvette lineup includes two models:

  • Corvette Coupe: 2-door coupe
  • Corvette Convertible: 2-door convertible
Body Structure: Corvette has a welded-steel uniframe with a corrosion-resistant coating. Body panels are made from fiberglass-reinforced plastic (FRP).

What's New For 1996


  • New Collector Edition and Grand Sport embroidery
  • New tachometer (LT4 only).


  • Fiberglass-reinforced plastic (FRP) body panels
  • The clam shell front-end assembly tilts forward
  • Corvette Coupe's glass rear hatch has two interior remote releases and a roller shade cargo cover
  • A one-piece removable roof panel (Coupe only)
  • The convertible top has a heated glass rear window
  • A convertible hardtop is available (not available on Grand Sport)
  • Standard Solar-Ray tinted glass
  • Retractable, power-operated halogen headlamps offer aerodynamic styling, a high-level of illumination and easy servicing.
Latest 1984 - 1996 C4 Corvette Forum Topics


  • New 330-horsepower LT4 engine option
  • New OBD II (On-Board Diagnostics Second Generation)
  • New Selective Real Time Damping suspension option
  • New available tuned Z51 Performance Handling Suspension Package
  • New long-life coolant good for 5 years/100,000 miles.*

*Maintenance needs vary with use and driving conditions.


  • Median age is 43 years
  • Median income of $90,000 annually
  • Predominantly male, with managerial, executive or semi-professional occupations.


Corvette competes in the high-sport segment, which represents approximately one percent of the passenger car industry. Total segment volume in the 1994 model year was 57,810 units.

Although numerous vehicles compete in this segment, including several exotics, four nameplates represent approximately 80 percent of the share. Corvette has consistently been a top-seller in this segment, capturing over 30 percent of the market at the expense of many of the newer import-contenders. In 1994, it accounted for 36.4 percent of the high-sport segment.

Corvette Coupe's chief competitors in the high-sport segment include:

  • Nissan 300ZX
  • Mitsubishi 3000GT
  • Mazda RX-7 Turbo
  • Porsche 968 & 911
  • Toyota Supra
  • Dodge Stealth
  • Dodge Viper
  • Acura NSX

Corvette Convertible's primary competition includes:

  • Mercedes-Benz 560SL
  • BMW 325i
  • Porsche 968
  • Dodge Stealth
  • Dodge Viper
  • Nissan 300ZX

Exterior Overview

  • Fiberglass-reinforced plastic (FRP) body panels
  • The clam shell front-end assembly tilts forward
  • Corvette Coupe's glass rear hatch has two interior remote releases and a roller shade cargo cover
  • A one-piece removable roof panel (Coupe only)
  • The convertible top has a heated glass rear window
  • A convertible hardtop is available (not available on Grand Sport)
  • Standard Solar-Ray tinted glass
  • Retractable, power-operated halogen headlamps offer aerodynamic styling, a high-level of illumination and easy servicing.

Interior Overview

Corvette has a cockpit-style interior that puts the driver in control with an analog/digital instrument panel with LCD, a leather-wrapped two-spoke Sport steering wheel, and bucket seats with standard leather seating surfaces.

All models equipped with the optional LT4 engine have a 0-8000-rpm tachometer with a 5700-rpm redline.

Interior Colors:

Admiral Blue Metallic with center white stripe and red "hash marks" on left front fender (Grand Sport only).

Sebring Silver (Collector Edition only).

Other colors:
  • Dark Purple Metallic
  • Bright Aqua Metallic
  • Polo Green II Metallic
  • Arctic White
  • Black
  • Competition Yellow
  • Torch Red.

Convertible Top colors:

  • White
  • Black
  • Beige.


Collector Edition has perforated Sport seats with Collector Edition embroidery and leather seating surfaces.

Grand Sport has perforated Sport seats with Grand Sport embroidery and leather seating surfaces.

  • Standard reclining bucket seats with leather seating surfaces, lateral support, and back-angle adjustments.

  • Optional Sport bucket seats with leather seating surfaces. Requires six way power driver and front- passenger seats.

Comfort and Convenience

  • Door panels have integral storage compartments in the armrests
  • White instrument panel graphics become tangerine-colored at night
  • The tire jack is mounted in an interior storage compartment behind the passenger seat
  • When the ignition key is turned off, a Reserve Accessory Power feature supplies power to the entertainment system and power windows for 15 minutes, or until a door is opened (whichever occurs first)
  • Sun visors have dual illuminated mirrors
  • Floor covering is treated with Scotchgardª FabricProtector
  • Standard air conditioning uses CFC-free R-134a refrigerant
  • Standard console has coin tray, cassette tape and CD storage, cup holders and integral armrest
  • Standard Tilt-Wheelª Adjustable Steering Column
  • Standard Speed control
  • Standard low-oil-level sensor
  • Standard dual, electrically adjustable, heated rearview mirrors improve visibility.

Passive Keyless Entry

Corvette is equipped with a standard Passive Keyless Entry (PKE) system. Unlike other keyless entry systems that require the driver to push a button on a key fob transmitter, the Corvette PKE requires no specific action - the system automatically unlocks the driver door (or both doors, depending on the setting) and turns on the interior light when the driver approaches the vehicle. The system automatically locks both doors when the driver walks a few feet away. The system also offers a remote hatch release (Coupe only).

  • PKE automatically arms and disarms the standard universal theft-deterrent system
  • Active features of the key fob transmitter include a separate passenger-door button and a hatch-releasebutton for coupes
  • The PKE system can be manually turned on and off
  • A security feature prevents the doors from locking when the keys are left in the ignition.

PASS-Key II Theft-Deterrent System

The PASS-Key II theft-deterrent system thwarts a thief's most common method of attack - defeating the steering column mechanism - without changing the way the vehicle is started.

  • The ignition key is embedded with an electronically coded resistor pellet that is "read" by alloy contacts in the ignition lock
  • A control module with an electronic logic board determines whether the values match and activates or deactivates the anti-theft mode
  • Using an improper key causes an immediate 2-4minute delay before another attempt to start the vehicle with a key can be made
  • An attempt to bypass the ignition system will temporarily disable the starter and fuel delivery system.

Safety Overview

Crash Avoidance Features

  • A sophisticated chassis and suspension system
  • Standard four-wheel anti-lock disc brake system
  • Ventilated four-wheel disc brakes
  • A brake/transmission shift interlock
  • Starter interlock switch (manual transmission)
  • Standard front and rear stabilizer bars
  • Acceleration Slip Regulation (ASR)

Occupant Protection Features

  • Standard driver- and front-passenger air bags
  • A reinforced safety cage
  • Front and rear crush zones
  • Laminated windshield safety glass and tempered sideand rear safety glass
  • Energy-absorbing steering column

Air Bags -- How They Work

Driver and front-passenger air bags are designed to offer protection, in addition to the protection offered by safety belts, in moderate to severe frontal and near frontal collisions. When a frontal or near frontal collision occurs, special crash sensors on an air bag-equipped vehicle measure crash severity and then trigger the air bag to deploy. It inflates by means of a chemical reaction that produces harmless nitrogen gas, which fills the air bag.

As contact is made with the the air bag, it rapidly deflates as the nitrogen gas is vented. Sometimes a momentary residue can be seen, appearing as smoke, which is mostly cornstarch or talcum powder. The inflation process takes only about one-twentieth of a second. Deflation may take up two or three seconds, meaning that vision is obstructed only momentarily.

Why Air Bags Save Lives

In frontal or near-frontal collisions, the vehicle,s forward motion begins to decelerate as impact occurs. However, occupants inside the vehicle remain in motion. Unless restrained, an unbelted front-seat occupant in a vehicle not equipped with an air bag would be stopped in a collision by the instrument panel, steering wheel or the windshield, possibly causing serious injury. A restrained occupant could avoid this type of impact -- wearing a safety belt would, in most cases, provide the stopping force necessary to avoid impact with interior surfaces, thereby avoiding injury that comes from contact. In a severe collision, even belted occupants may contact the steering wheel or instrument panel, causing injury. The air bag(s) supplements the protection provided by safety belts by distributing the impact forces more evenly over the occupant's body, reducing injuries from concentrated loading.

Simply put, safety belts are the most effective occupant protection system on a vehicle. For this reason, all Chevrolet models provide 3-point lap/shoulder safety belts for outboard front- and rear-seat occupants and lap belts for center-seat occupant positions.

Collector Edition (Z15)

A new "Collector Edition" model celebrates the final year of production of the fourth-generation Corvette. This collectible Corvette has the following features:
  • Exclusive Sebring Silver paint
  • Available in Coupe or Convertible (Convertible withblack top only)
  • Chromed "Collector Edition" emblems on wheels,front fenders, hood, and fuel-filler door
  • Available with standard 300-horsepower LT1 (withautomatic transmission only) or optional 330 horse-power LT4 (with 6-speed manual transmission only)
  • Black brake calipers with raised bright aluminum "Corvette" lettering
  • Aluminum five-spoke 17"-diameter wheels painted silver
  • P255/45ZR-17 front and P285/40ZR-17 rear tires
  • Perforated Sport seats with "Collector Edition" embroidery
  • Torch Red, Black, or Gray interior.

Grand Sport (Z16)

A new "Grand Sport" model reminds Corvette afficionados of the legendary lightweight Corvette road racers of the '60s and delivers the advanced technology of the '90s. With a limited production run, all Corvette Grand Sport models include the following:
  • Standard 330-horsepower LT4 engine and 6-speed manual transmission (automatic not available)
  • Available on Coupe or Convertible (Convertible with white top only)
  • Exclusive Admiral Blue Metallic paint with center white stripe and red "hash marks" on left front fender
  • Chromed "Corvette" emblems on hood and fuel-filler door
  • "Grand Sport" emblems on the front fenders
  • Rear-wheel flares
  • Black brake calipers with raised bright aluminum "Corvette" lettering
  • Black five-spoke 17"-diameter Aluminum wheels
  • Coupe and Convertible: P255/45ZR-17 (front) and P285/40ZR-17 (rear) tires
  • Perforated Sport seats with "Grand Sport" embroidery
  • Red/black or Black interior colors
  • Unique serial numbers.

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