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1985 base w/ 91-94 body panels. Good idea, bad idea?

Old 07-11-2019, 01:15 PM
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Default 1985 base w/ 91-94 body panels. Good idea, bad idea?

Just wondering what are your(reader) personal thoughts, on putting later C4 body panels(nose/tail cover, side vents) on an early C4. Love the idea, hate the idea, and why?
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Old 07-11-2019, 01:47 PM
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I guess the question would be why do it? If you have a totaled early C4 and body panels for a late C4 I see no issue. The cost to convert an early style to a late style would probably be more than just buying a later model. I am also a big believer in its your car do what makes you happy.
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Old 07-11-2019, 06:06 PM
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Im in the process of doing it right now, so I obviously like the idea. Im a fan of the later style exterior and early style interior, except the door panels, but those cant be swapped alone. Bought the parts used and didnt pay that much for them and the car needed a repaint anyway. There is a little bit of wiring work, that I havent done yet, connectors are different on a few lights and need to wire a third brake light in, but shouldnt be that bad. The hard part at least for me is all the paint prep work and disassembly for a color change. The rear bumper isnt any fun to remove either, but thats well known. I have way more time in it than I thought I would, if your gonna do it yourself, expect it to take a awhile. I had a few extra problems to deal with as well. I definitely understand why the paint shops charge so much to pain these things. Putting it all back together isnt going to be fun either. If I payed myself my normal rate in labor, I could have bought a much nicer version lol, but Im attached to this one.
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Old Yesterday, 12:59 PM
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Very common on AUS vetteís but personally I prefer early exterior.
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Old Yesterday, 02:23 PM
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Personally, I love the 1984-1989 (L98, exterior, interior), so I would not do it. However, if you like the early interior and L98, but want the later exterior, it would be interesting to see. If you decide to do it, it would be interesting to see how it turns out.
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Old Yesterday, 05:23 PM
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I had a few reasons I liked the newer body style better. With the use of arrows (below), I draw your attention to the lower body lines of the front and rear sections. I don't feel those originally matched the "F40" shape of the main body. The rear bumper should have extended a few inches lower -- to avoid this "cropped" looked. It doesn't seem to line up with the rest of the "F40" cylindrical shape. The lower part of the front bumper has a hard, squared-off look to it. Again, not a match to the "F40" theme per se.

These early C4 design cues reminded me of the wedge cars of the the Triumph TR7 or Pontiac Fiero. I had also owned a black Dodge Daytona Turbo Z (prior to my C4) which also had a pronounced wedge shape. When you look at the later "ZR1" bumpers, you'll see they addressed both of these areas. The rear bumper was lowered and the front more rounded off. I also like how the driving lights wrap around. I especially like the later side molding, which looks more integrated to the body....and has the same paint finish. For fans of the C4, many will know the general public's love of the (89-introduced) ZR1 body shape prompted the change in bumper styling -- in hopes of selling more cars. I was among the fans of the ZR1 "look".

Finally (as mentioned earlier in the thread), swapping bumpers/body panels doesn't make a lot of sense when you can sell/trade for the style you prefer. That is, unless, you are already doing body work and find yourself looking at buying front/rear bumpers anyway. That was somewhat the case for me in 2001. Three years after purchasing my 89 (in 99), my front bumper was torn. My hood was also damaged (and needed new paint anyway). So, I "upgraded" to a hi-rise hood and found a 95 donor car to buy the nose. Because I liked the later butt and side molding, I through "all-in" and bought those too. Of course, I also had to buy the "side fenders".

Here is a pic of my '89 before it sat after purchase in 1999. Notice the arrows referenced in paragraph #1

After conversion ,it looks like this. For wing-haters, all I can only say is this.... I didn't originally install the wing but ended up picking it to cover a failed "antenna shave". The fiberglass filler created a subtle "ring" after spending thousands to have the entire car repainted. This particular wing covers the antenna hole. For the point of this thread, notice the difference in areas marked with arrows. And, for my own sense of symmetry, I fell the wing creates a visual balance -- to offset the addition of side-pipes and hi-rise hood.

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Old Yesterday, 09:45 PM
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Originally Posted by GREGGPENN View Post
sense of symmetry, I fell the wing creates a visual balance -- to offset the addition of side-pipes and hi-rise hood.
OT, a little, but I love the look of this C4. And, I do agree that with the hood and side-pipes, the wing balances things well.

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Old Today, 08:11 AM
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It's been done a thousand times. If you like it, do it. Simple.
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Old Today, 08:34 AM
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Originally Posted by uknomoose View Post
Just wondering what are your(reader) personal thoughts, on putting later C4 body panels(nose/tail cover, side vents) on an early C4. Love the idea, hate the idea, and why?
If you asked me this question in say 1991 I would say GOOD IDEA in 2019 itís a BAD IDEA just a waste of money IMO and the car will be worth around what it would cost to put the original panels back on and paint the car which is close to what an 85 is worth...but itís your car

Last edited by Y-bodluvr; Today at 08:37 AM.
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