Earl's Corvette sports a few rarities that set it apart from your average 1963 model, with the obvious tweak being that custom, side-exit exhaust. Mecum claims that only four Corvettes left the factory with that exhaust setup, while Earl's customized gauge cluster and dash also add a considerable amount of value. After all, when was the last time the passenger had their own set of gauges?
Considering the provenance of this Chevy, the fact that it's a member of the Corvette Hall of Fame shouldn't come as a shock. The freshly restored offering is lot S110, and will cross the block on Saturday, October 12, at the Schaumburg Convention Center. Read more about the car and the auction below.
Walworth, WI - September 24, 2013 -- The factory-styling Sting Ray gifted to the father of the Corvette – Harley J. Earl – will cross the block at Mecum's Chicago auction this Oct. 10-12 at the Schaumburg Convention Center. Among an anticipated 1,000-car lineup, this car stands out as the personal driver of GM's head designer who was one of the most significant innovators in the history of the American automobile.
This 1963 Corvette Convertible (Lot S110), Shop Order 10323, is a one-of-a-kind build given directly from General Motors to the man often credited for introducing design and color to the American automobile industry. Harley J. Earl joined GM in 1928 and became head of the General Motors Design team, retiring in 1958. His designs in the '50s at the Motorama tours are what brought the Corvette to the attention of the American public and to the world.
Gifted to Earl for his lifetime of contributions to General Motors, he kept the Metallic Blue car at his home in Palm Beach, Florida, for use as his personal driver. He enjoyed the Corvette for two years, even using it as the parade car at the Daytona 500 in 1965 when he served as Grand Marshall. The trophy given to the winner of the Daytona 500 remains his namesake to this day, dubbed "The Harley J. Earl Trophy."
One of only four Corvettes ever built with the custom side exhaust system, the car features a custom gauge and dash treatment unique to S.O.10323. As a longtime member of the Corvette Hall of Fame, this car is a mainstay of the Bloomington Gold Special Collection having been invited more than any other Corvette in existence. Confirmed by GM as the very car custom built and gifted to Earl, the car has since been restored to the specifications as when it arrived in Earl's driveway.
The historically significant, one-of-a-kind Harley J. Earl Corvette will cross the block on Saturday, Oct. 12 at Chicagoland's only collector and classic car auction.
Doors to the Mecum Chicago auction will open each day at 8 a.m. Portions of all three days will be broadcast live on Discovery's Velocity Network in addition to the live stream of the entire auction presented by Mecum at www.mecum.com. Mecum's website is updated daily with the latest consignments including detailed descriptions and photographs of the vehicles. To view the list, to consign a vehicle or to register as a bidder for the Chicago auction, visit www.mecum.com or call (262) 275-5050.
About Mecum Auctions
Nobody sells more than Mecum. Nobody. The Mecum Auction Company is the world leader of collector car and Road Art sales, hosting auctions throughout the United States. The company has been specializing in the sale of collector cars for 26 years, now offering more than 15,000 vehicles per year and averaging more than one auction each month. Established by President Dana Mecum in 1988, Mecum Auctions remains a family-run company headquartered in Walworth, Wis. For further information, visit www.mecum.com or call (262) 275-5050. Follow along with Mecum's social media news and join us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram.