1959 Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray Special Racer
Bill Mitchell (right), who succeeded Harley Earl as the head of GM design, built (at his own personal expense) the 1959 Corvette Racer to determine the handling and performance potential of the Corvette. It was built in a secret area known as "Studio X" and served as a styling basis for the "Mid Years" 1963 to 1967 Corvettes. While various engines have powered the Stingray Racer, it is now equipped with a 327 cubic inch 360 horsepower engine fed by '60s era mechanical fuel injection. The weight is approximately 2,100 lbs.
Corvette Sting Ray Racer doing demonstration laps at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca August, 2003.
Hood vents on the Stingray Racer (above) found themselves on the hoods of 1963 Corvettes, although (below) they were only a styling element and non-functional on the production car.
The rear styling of the Racer (above) was similar to the 1961 to '67 Corvettes (below).
Above, left: Side pipe, without leg protection may have been a hazard but it was very functional and an aesthetic high point. Right: Wheels are cast magnesium. Initially the brakes were finned drums but were later updated to disc at all four wheels.
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