Any Corvette enthusiast can tell you that buying the car is just the beginning. After the vehicle itself comes the accessorizing, and the installation of performance parts. Or alternately, a painstaking restoration to factory original status, undoing the previous owner’s performance and accessory choices.
Here are 10 products that represent good accessory and performance choices for your Corvette. Some are specific to certain model years, but shop around and you’re sure to find something similar no matter what kind of Corvette you own.
If you love your car, you won’t take it through a commercial car wash. You need a complete kit of top quality detailing products. You can get good stuff from companies like Meguiar’s at the local auto parts supply, but for the true aficionado you just can’t beat Griot’s Garage for products and kits.
How can you show your face at Bloomington Gold if you’re wearing an ordinary shirt? The short answer is, you can’t. To be a true Corvette owner, you need the wardrobe. Everyone’s got a basic logo jacket, so if you want to be a little outside the box, consider a Corvette-imprinted aloha shirt. And you’re certainly not going to pack that shirt in just any old tote bag, so throw in a fancy leather overnight duffle or carry-on bag emblazoned with the Corvette logo. Now you’re the stylin’ owner.
The cheapest horsepower boost you can get on any car is to liberate the exhaust. Stock exhausts are made to be as quiet as possible, and that steals horsepower right out of your engine. You can install a cat-back exhaust in an afternoon, buy yourself 15-30 horsepower, and still remain blissfully street-legal. Do your homework however, because some brands of aftermarket exhaust are awfully noisy and you might find the high-performance experience to be deafening.
4. Breathe Easy
After you’ve upgraded your exhaust, you need to let more air in at the front end. A tuned intake such as this K&N unit, or even just a high-flow filter will boost a little more horsepower over the stock configuration. Bear in mind that these filters take a little more attention than the stock paper units, but they’re very nearly free horsepower.
There’s nothing like a good book, especially when it’s all about your favorite car. The Corvette may well be the most written-about car in the history of the automobile, so you have a wide variety of books to choose from. From buyer’s guides to history and performance, these books help you learn about your car and enjoy your connection to all things Corvette. A trip to the local bookstore or a shopping spree on Amazon.com could be some of the lowest-cost accessorizing you can find.
These “Flat Stopper” mini-ramps are designed to help you position your car perfectly in the garage or trailer every time. They stick to the floor and you just drive up until the ramps cup your ‘Vette’s front tires and stop you. As an added benefit, the rounded shape will prevent your tires from developing flat spots through the winter.
If you have a removable hardtop, you need a proper cradle to keep it damage-free. This sturdy hardtop storage cart from Corvette America will let you store and move your hardtop conveniently. For the complete package, this cradle is sold alongside a little hoist that will let you remove and install your hardtop by yourself.
8. Cover Up
The debate rages: to cover or not to cover. If you can keep your ‘Vette in a perfectly clean environment, maybe a cover isn’t necessary. But if you’re like most of us and your garage is a fairly dusty place, or you occasionally park your Corvette out in the sunlight, you might want to keep a good car cover on hand. Don’t believe claims about universal fit covers – you need one tailored specifically for your year and style of Corvette.
Another easy performance upgrade is to invest in a set of good aftermarket brake rotors and pads. Prices range depending on manufacturer, design, and the size of your Corvette’s brakes, but you can dress up your wheel area with rotors and improve your braking with better pads. Ignore claims of increased performance from drilled rotors alone. With modern brake pads, those holes and grooves are just there to look racy.
10. Cool Your Cabin
When your Corvette is parked outside, the windshield and cabin act like a combination greenhouse and convection oven. UV light and heat combine to bake your car’s interior to a crisp, causing cracks in your dashboard, decay in your headliner, and weakness in your seat upholstery. You can reduce this wear and tear with a simple sun shield, and display the Corvette logo at the same time. These screens are affordable and help keep your Corvette as cool as you know it is.