The Heartbeat of America and the quest to Find New Roads…

“Find New Roads” is the latest slogan from Chevrolet, as part of their marketing campaign  for 2013. And that’s exactly what a handful of 2014 C7 Corvette Stingrays did on Saturday, November 2.

Since the end of August, those in attendance at cars&coffee/Irvine have been treated to random, up close viewings of the brand new C7 Corvette, and on the morning of November 2, all present were treated to the largest gathering of 2014 Corvette Stingrays to date, and in previously unseen colors.

First up was this 2014 C7 coupe in Blade Silver, as seen below.

2014 Blade Silver Corvette Sting Ray_3/4 front view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

A shock of color; the black interior accented by a pair of red seats, center console panels and door trim…

2014 Blade Silver Corvette Sting Ray_Interior view w/ red seats_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

2014 Blade Silver Corvette Sting Ray_3/4 rear view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

2014 Blade Silver Corvette Sting Ray_ rear view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Next in line was this beautiful black on black, 2014 Corvette coupe.

2014 Black on black Corvette Sting Ray_ front view with reflections_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

For 2014 the real thing; a front hood with louvers that are fully functional.

2014 Black on black Corvette Sting Ray_ front hood vents and reflections_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Polarized light captured and refracted within the top of the headlight lens (below).

2014 Black on black Corvette Sting Ray_ polarized light refractions visible on the headlight lens_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

2014 Black on black Corvette Sting Ray_ 3/4 rear view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

2014 Black on black Corvette Sting Ray_ Velocity Yellow 2014 Corvette reflected in side door_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

The last of the trio of brand news Corvettes was this eye-popping, Velocity Yellow Stingray coupe.

2014 Velocity Yellow Corvette Sting Ray_ rear view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

2014 Velocity Yellow Corvette Sting Ray_ 3/4 rear view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

The new Stingray badge, found on the front fenders, positioned just behind each diagonal vent (see above and below).

2014 Velocity Yellow Corvette Sting Ray_ front fender sting ray badge_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Ironically, parked a short distance away from this trio, was another 2014 Corvette Stingray. This particular C7 was wrapped in Torch red, and equipped with the Z-51 performance package. Included in this package are 19″ front and 20″ rear, 5 – split spoke wheels, which on this car had been finished in black (one of only three finishes available from Chevrolet), all wrapped in Michelin Pilot Super Sport ZP rubber.

2014 Torch red Corvette Sting Ray_ 3/4 side view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Another example of the optional, two-toned interiors available.

2014 Torch red Corvette Sting Ray_ two tone interior view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

The owners tribute to Chief Engineer and the recognized godfather of the Corvette: Zora Arkus-Duntov.

2014 Torch red Corvette Sting Ray_ rear view with reflections and ZORA NO1 license plate_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

DSC_00722014 Torch red Corvette Sting Ray_ rear view with reflections and raised front hood_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

The 6.2 liter, 460 horsepower LT1, complete with an extensive list of the Z51 Performance package whistles and bells, including dry sump lubrication.

2014 Torch red Corvette Sting Ray_ view of LT1 motor_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Holding to the mornings Corvette theme, and parked across the row from the trio of 2014 Corvettes, was an early sibling in the form of a 1963 Corvette Sting Ray Split Window coupe. Dressed in Sebring Silver and sporting an early fuel injected motor.

1963 Sebring silver Corvette Sting Ray split window coupe_ 3/4 rear view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

The trendsetting interior, circa 1963…

1963 Sebring silver Corvette Sting Ray split window coupe_ interior view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

and state of the art, Corvette fuel injected motor from 1963 as seen below.

1963 Sebring silver Corvette Sting Ray split window coupe_ fuel injected motor_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Another of the classic details found on the 1963 Sting Ray; faux, front hood louvers.

1963 Sebring silver Corvette Sting Ray split window coupe_ front hood reflections and faux hood grills_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

The source of inspiration for the 2014 C7 front fender vents?

1963 Sebring silver Corvette Sting Ray split window coupe_ front fender with inset details_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

The unmistakable lines of the 1963 Corvette, Split window coupe.

1963 Sebring silver Corvette Sting Ray split window coupe_ 3/4 rear view,passenger side_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

1963 Sebring silver Corvette Sting Ray split window coupe_ rear fender badge and reflections_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Continuing the Chevrolet theme for the morning, was this beautiful example of a Tri-5 Bel-Air coupe. And parked in close proximity, was a custom Harley-Davidson motorcycle with styling and design inspiration taken directly from the 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air.

Red Tri-5 Chevrolet Bel Air and 1957 Bel Air inspired Harley Davidson motorcycle__side & rear views_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Red & white,1957 Chevrolet Bel Air inspired Harley Davidson motorcycle__show sign_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

I was surprised to learn that this custom-built Harley Davidson with Bel Air overlay, and parked before me had been built in Europe, by the company Luporacing (based in France). For information about Luporacing, or to view the progress /build photos of this motorcycle (“HD Bel Air”), please refer to the following link (for luporacing.com).

Red & cream,1957 Chevrolet Bel Air inspired Harley Davidson motorcycle__rear view, motorcycle and car_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Red & cream,1957 Chevrolet Bel Air inspired Harley Davidson motorcycle__side view_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Red & cream,1957 Chevrolet Bel Air inspired Harley Davidson motorcycle__side view and motor reflections_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

Red & cream,1957 Chevrolet Bel Air inspired Harley Davidson motorcycle__close up motor reflections_cars&coffee/irvine_November 2, 2013

So taking a cue from Chevrolet, and regardless of whether you ride a motorcycle or drive a car, a challenge has been made: “Find New Roads”. I suspect that the owners of the 2014 Corvettes identified above are already way ahead of the rest of us…

(All photos by the author)

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What’s blue or black and wears a split window out back?

What color is that? Prior to the sun coming up, by all accounts it appeared to be black. However as the sun began to rise, there was a faint glint of blue that could be perceived. Or was it just the early morning sky reflecting off of the pristine bodywork?

Depending on the model year, if this had been 1951, the vehicle in question could have been be a split window Volkswagen Beetle (as seen below).

Blue 1951 split window Volkswagen  Beetle_ Rear window detail_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

However, in this case the subject just happened to be a 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray, a.k.a. the split window coupe. A unique design feature available for only one year, and it just happens to be one of my all time favorite Corvettes.

So with the sun finally coming up, i could clearly see that this 1963 Sting Ray was in fact Daytona Blue and not the alternative, which in 1963 would have been Tuxedo Black. So now it was time to get serious and record my chance encounter with this stunning split window coupe…

Daytona Blue 1963 Corvette Split window coupe_3/4 side view_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

Daytona Blue 1963 Corvette Split window coupe_front view_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

These very cool knock-off wheels were offered as an option (P 48) for 1963. However, after doing some research, I learned that back in 1963 Chevrolet did not deliver any of their optional, knock off wheels on the Corvette, due to quality issues. So I suspect that these wheels were likely sourced from a later model Corvette.

Daytona Blue 1963 Corvette Split window coupe_front wheel detail_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

Daytona Blue 1963 Corvette Split window coupe_side view_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

Daytona Blue 1963 Corvette Split window coupe_rear view & reflections_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

The classic 1963 Sting Ray contours; split rear windows and the raised, central spine detail that bisects the roof and continues down the back of the car, all blending seamlessly into the rear bodywork.

Daytona Blue 1963 Corvette Split window coupe_split window, roof detail & reflections_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

Daytona Blue 1963 Corvette Split window coupe_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

A stepping stone in the evolution of Corvette interiors, circa 1963. Design elements found in the 1963 interior continued to evolve, and their influences can still be found in Chevrolet’s latest offering for 2014, in their new Corvette Stingray.

Daytona Blue 1963 Corvette Split window coupe_dash & interior detail_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

Front hood reflections and the unique, dual faux grills.

Daytona Blue 1963 Corvette Split window coupe_front hood detail and reflections_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

Daytona Blue 1963 Corvette Split window coupe_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_9/07/13

As cool as the 2014 Corvette Stingray is, when all is said and done, it’s going to be hard to beat an original, and especially a 1963 split window.

(All photos by the author)