There’s a white 1992 Chevrolet Corvette taking up space in the Mechanical Assembly room at General Motors’ Design Center in Warren, MI, in a shop that’s normally reserved for the building of concept cars and prototypes. It’s in the process of undergoing a complete restoration, and obviously it’s not just any Corvette. In fact, this car, the 1 millionth Corvette built, has one of the most extraordinary stories of any of its peers.
Almost a year and a half ago, the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, KY, suffered a dramatic and unexpected catastrophe when a sinkhole opened up inside the museum and swallowed eight of the Corvettes on exhibit. The recovery of the cars was headline news for car guys for months afterward. All eight cars were eventually rescued from the hole in the ground, in varying states of distress, and the museum and Chevrolet announced plans to restore the three most salvageable cars. The white 1 millionth Corvette is the second of those three to go in for repairs.
It’s a fitting place to work on a historic Corvette. In addition to concept cars, the Design Center was responsible for restoring the 1938 Buick Y-Job, first of the auto show dream cars. The Design Center’s iconic Dome has also been used as the staging area to approve the final design of nearly every GM product since the 1970s. The task of reassembling the 1 millionth Corvette is being taken just as seriously, though. The emphasis is on originality. Early critics wondered if replacing all of the damaged parts on the crushed car would render it just another 1992 Corvette, so efforts are being made to salvage everything. The car’s twisted windshield frame is being salvaged and reused instead of replaced. The numerous signatures applied to the car by workers at the Bowling Green plant as it went down the line will all be preserved as well.
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Sinkhole-Swallowed 1 Millionth Corvette Ready For Restoration originally appeared on topspeed.com on Sunday, 14 June 2015 12:00 EST.