If you’re looking to add a rare Corvette to your car collection, there are a number of models that fit the bill, from L88 to ZR1. But if you’re looking for the ultimate Corvette, you’ve got to dig deeper, aiming for the meritorious ZR2. One of the rarest Corvettes ever produced, this wicked LS6-wielding model’s run resulted in a mere 12 cars in 1971, making it any Corvette collector’s ultimate trophy car. While these cars certainly aren’t easy to come by, once in a blue moon you’ll see one. And lucky for diehard collectors out there with deep pockets, the one we just happened to find is heading to a Mecum auction in a matter of weeks.
Back in November we took a look at the ZR2’s history, inspired by avid Corvette collector Ed Foss’ very own low-mileage ZR2 convertible. That car, one of just two ZR2 convertibles ever built, is undoubtedly one of Foss’ most prized Corvettes. But in an odd twist of fate, Foss may not be the only one harboring one of America’s rarest Corvettes in the near future, as the other 1971 ZR2 convertible is set to hit the auction block at Mecum’s Kissimmee, Florida auction later this month.
Finished in Ontario Orange, this ultra-rare Stingray is the last of the so called Z-cars produced by Chevrolet, a collection of factory-built, extremely high-performance Corvettes commissioned by Corvette Chief Engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov. This historically significant group of cars also includes the original 1963 Z06, 1969 ZR1 L88, and the ZR1 Special Purpose LT1 Corvettes.
Built for ultimate performance in an age where GM’s performance hold on the industry was slipping, this particular Corvette comes with the coveted ZR2 package – a performance enthusiast’s dream complete with a 454ci/450hp LS6 engine, M22 Rock Crusher four-speed manual transmission, F41 heavy-duty suspension, J56 dual-pin heavy-duty power brakes and aluminum radiator without shroud. Highly optioned, this convertible also features aluminum heads, A.I.R. smog controls, aluminized exhaust, a 3.55 Posi-traction rear differential, and Rally wheels with Blackwall tires.
The gorgeous black interior of the car also features unique options, like Soft Ray tinted glass, an auxiliary hard top and shoulder harnesses. Features like air conditioning, a radio and power steering were not available on the ZR2 models.
Originally shipped to an American owner living in Germany in 1971, the car was treated to a full body-off restoration upon return to the United States in the 1980s.
In 1999, the car was inducted into the Bloomington Gold Special Collection, followed by the Bloomington Gold Hall of fame in 2003. It was later a part of the National Corvette Museum’s Concours d’Performance exhibit.
The car will hit the stage at the Kissimmee, FL auction on Saturday January 26th at 4p.m. With an estimated selling price between $525,000 and $625,000, the auction of this car will definitely be worth watching.