Peter Max’s Barn-Find 1973 Corvette Resurfaces for Auction

Hagerty Marketplace

Pop artist Peter Max’s 36-car Corvette collection was one of the most well-known barn-find phenomena among Corvette aficionados. The odd collection of one Corvette per year of production from 1953-1989 (the 1983 model never reached dealership floors) was initially used as a promotion for the TV channel VH1. Max had planned on using them in an art exhibit but they languished in a New York parking garage for decades until they were purchased and given away as part of a Corvette Heroes charity sweepstakes to raise money for military families. Now, the 1973 Stingray is up for sale, by itself this time, and is up for auction this week on Hagerty Marketplace.

There were myriad interesting changes to the automotive landscape in the early 1970s, and the 1973 Corvette shows off one of those developments via the contrast in front and rear fascia and their respective bumpers. The front of this model Corvette wears a painted urethane bumper, reflecting NHTSA’s requirement that vehicles be able to withstand a 5-mph impact at the front without damage. In 1974, the rear of the Corvette followed suit, leaving 1973 as the lone model year seemingly caught in two eras. The egg-crate fender vents were also gone for 1973, which combined with the deletion of the chrome bumper to make the front end a bit less busy. Thankfully the bold, swooping lines of the fenders remained intact.

1973 Chevrolet Corvette engine bay
The small-block crate engine is topped by an Edelbrock intake manifold and breathes through a set of tubular exhaust headers. Hagerty Marketplace

This example was originally equipped with the well-known 210-horsepower, L82 version of the 350 small-block V-8 and a three-speed automatic. After its long hibernation,  Corvette Heroes treated the Stingray with a GM crate engine and gave it new, digital gauges so that it was ready to hit the streets once the winner took possession. Since then, the current owner has also refreshed a few things, including replacing some brake and exhaust components and installing a Bluetooth audio system with Hertz speakers and a JL Audio subwoofer. The seller also notes that the rear bumpers and luggage rack have been re-chromed. Inside, the black interior and red seatbelts seem to have survived their slumber quite nicely.

1973 Chevrolet Corvette interior
Hagerty Marketplace

With just over a week to go, budding has hit $20,500. Even putting aside the strange ownership history, we’ve got a feeling that the allure of a red Stingray will bring more bids as the time dwindles.


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    Mea culpa!
    I always thought Peter Max was involved with the “Yellow Submarine” film, and the “Zonkers” popcorn snack.
    Many others thought so too. Turns out we were all wrong.

    I know — it’s nothing to do with cars…
    Still; I learned something! That’s always good.

    There’s a similar one rotting away down the street from me. It has recessed lugnuts that require a special socket that nobody can find. They can’t get the wheels off so they can’t easily move the thing. With four flat tires, getting a jack under it is also a problem.

    If even only one tire still has its beads on the rim it can be inflated enough to quickly get something under the car. And those nuts would have to be recessed quite a ways for me to not be able to get them off. Of course, they’d never go back on again….

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