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1966 Corvette Road Test, when new...and Steve McQueen.


Well-known user
Some of the younger guys around here may not remember bias-ply tyres that came on all North American cars, back in the day. Suffice it to say that they were the equivalent of hockey pucks on ice...meaning little to no traction. Further, due to the tight wheelwell openings in the C2 design, later improved in C3, tall-narrow tyres were the norm.

With that in mind, here's a road test from the March 1966 issue of Motor Trend magazine (53 years ago)...



And, just for fun, here is one of Steve McQueen's personal favourites, from outside one of his movie shoots. His 1966 RPO L72 (427/425hp) coupe, with the same engine as in the article above...



Well-known user
Can drivers make a difference? You bet. The above Motor Trend Magazine, in which the car was running a 4.11:1 rear gear, produced a 1/4 mile test result of 13.4 seconds @ 105 mph. However, the following published by Car and Driver Magazine that same year, with the same engine, and on the same skinny, non-sticky, bias-ply tyres resulted in 12.8 seconds @ 112 mph.....with a 3.36:1 rear gear. Goes against all logic, no? The car with better 1/4 mile gears was slower. Had to be the driver.

These cars are easily in the low-12s/high-11s with proper tyres.



Well-known user
Oh my! Photo of a 1966 L72 427 Corvette taken in the pits during the 24 Hours at Daytona in 1966.