You can achieve anything you want in life if you have the courage to dream it. The intelligence to make a realistic plan, and the will to see that plan through to the end. – Sidney A. Friedman
On June 30, 1953, the first Corvette rolled off the assembly line at the General Motors facility in Flint, Michigan. The lucky worker to drive that first Vette was Tony Kleiber.
Earl Automobile Works designed custom auto bodies for Hollywood movie stars in the 1930’s. They were about the only folks who could afford to buy cars since the rest of the country was experiencing the depression.
Harley J. Earl was hired to redesign the LaSalle, the mid-range car introduced between the Buick and the Cadillac. He also designed the Buick LeSabre in 1950. His great achievement was the ever popular Corvette in 1953. The Corvette was labeled a “dream car” and was part of General Motors’s traveling Motorama display at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City.
The Vette was a hit and 300 models were built in 1953. All 1953 Corvettes were white convertibles with red interiors and black canvas tops. Underneath its sleek exterior, however, the Corvette was outfitted with parts standard to other GM autos, including a “Blue Flame” six-cylinder engine, two-speed Powerglide automatic transmission and the drum brakes from Chevrolet’s regular car line.
It was a disappointment compared to the European competitors and sales were unimpressive. GM kept refining the design, however, and the addition of its first V-8 engine in 1955 greatly improved the Corvette’s performance.
By 1961, the Corvette had cemented its reputation as America’s favorite sports car and today it continues to rank among the world’s elite sports cars in acceleration time, top speed and overall muscle.
Vroom… Vroom… wink! 😉