It’s the 60’s 50’s Corvette convertible from the future!

The Corvette was voted the second most iconic US vehicle by YOU in our recent poll, finishing 10 votes behind the Ford Mustang.

Whilst I nominated the early 70’s Stingray as the seminal Corvette, I couldn’t resist these pictures sent through via email tonight from a mate on the mainland.

Our photographer is a regular reader named Ian B and this car lives not far from him, in country Victoria. The owner has had the car for over 50 years now, having originally imported it from Canada. He even did the RHD conversion himself!

UPDATE: As noted by Jimmy in comments, these first Corvettes had a straight six engine in original form, however our owner here fitted a 400ci V8 under the hood some time ago, a move which ‘improved the car enormously’ by the owner’s reckoning. The car is a 1954 model.

The most curious part is the custom-made, removable plexi-glass roof, which keeps the wet stuff away whilst still maintaining full visibility for the driver and passengers.

George Jetson, we have your car right here!

Ian, thanks for the photos and to the owner, congratulations on a fantastic preservation job, which I’m sure you continue to enjoy every time you hit the road.


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  1. Swade,
    Sorry to say, but that bubble-top Corvette is from the 50’s (a ’54 or ’55 I’d guess). However, it did presage the Jetson’s flying car of the 60’s. And it did pre-date air con as a Corvette feature, unfortunately (for the occupants)!

    Dan D (old Saab guy from USA)

  2. These early Corvettes are really a work of art. However, they are a really crappy sports car. The 235 straight 6 in its ultimate form hooked to a powerglide 2 speed auto. Both lumps of cast iron are indestructible. The shapes and look of the vette are pure 50’s fantasy future.
    I drove one of these on a sunny summer day. That chrome windshield frame was blinding. And the powerglide floor shifter is reverse pattern — park at the back, n,d,l and then reverse at the front.
    But that ’54 corvette draws a crowd where ever it goes.
    And this bubble top is awesome.

  3. Jimmy is spot on. My comments exactly.

    He’s pegged it as a 1954, and I’m inclined to agree. I don’t know enough about them to distinguish 1954 from 1955, but it definitely one of those two years.

  4. Thanks gents. New details have come in overnight and the post has been amended accordingly – it’s a ’54 and has been fitted with a V8.

  5. There is also the Gaylord car, built for the Gaylord Brothers of Chicago.
    The first one I saw was in July 1954 or 1955. It was built in Europe and had a Cadillac engine. Car came in a wooden crate to the Gaylord factory in St. Hyacinthe, Quebec, Canada. I saw it just after it was uncrated in the plant and moved outside for pictures. The car was later driven to Chicago by Mr.Paul Hebert, who drove the delivery truck for Gaylords limited. I saw this vehicle since my father was the stock receiver and shipper of factory products. I examined it but was not allowed to sit in it.. “Google” Gaylord Cars and you will see this beautiful vehicle.