No, 1975 Corvette Is Not the Worst Corvette
When it comes to the worst Corvette, there are plenty to choose from, but 1975 isn’t as bad as they say.
Corvettes built in 1975 might be among the best Corvettes out there, and don’t deserve the moniker of “worst”. According to a dreck-filled, top-ten clickbait list from edmunds.com a few years back, the 1975 Corvette is the absolute worst Corvette ever built, simply because it had the lowest horsepower rating.
First, having driven several iterations of Corvette throughout history, we’re forced to conclude that there is no such thing as a bad Corvette. Calling something “the worst Corvette” is like saying “the worst ice cream bar” or “the least significant Powerball lottery winner”. We’d all rather have the “worst” Corvette than the best Toyota Camry, right?
Edmunds‘ reasoning is that the base engine in 1975 was an anemic 165-horsepower small block. Yeah, that’s admittedly not great, but independent testing of the era still managed to get the car to scoot to sixty in just 7.7 seconds. In today’s world of sub 3-second sprints, that may not sound very quick, but in 1975 it was practically a rocket. And let’s not forget the optional 205-horsepower L-82 engine, either. The reality is that the 1975 Chevrolet Corvette was still one of the quickest cars of its day.
CHECK OUT: What Forum Members Are Saying About the ’75 Corvette
Presumably, edmunds also finds ire in the new-for-1974 plastic impact bumpers. But we’re actually not turned off by them as much as many are. The aerodynamic look of the rear kamm-style tail and the smooth transition from the front bumper into the hood is almost beautiful. It’s a product of its era, and that’s perhaps the best argument for something like this. If the 1970s hadn’t unfolded as they did, this car wouldn’t exist. But then again, maybe the Corvette wouldn’t exist at all.
Furthermore, 1975 was the final year of production convertible Corvettes in the C3 generation. We absolutely love top-down Corvette-ing, and can’t find a fault in a drop-top Stingray. Granted, only 12% of buyers opted for the convertible back then, but the fact that it was still available is all we need.
Edmunds is only concerned with the car as-new. But it is important to remember that many Corvette owners are tinkerers, and will end up modifying their cars. Just the simple matter of installing a less-restrictive exhaust package will open up a bunch of horsepower, and additional speed. In states like California, 1975-built cars are emissions exempt, allowing such modifications to be carried out legally.
Don’t hate on the 1975 ‘Vette. It’s far better than you might give it credit for.