1971 Corvette Stingray: Down the Brands Hatch

Thomas Klockau

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, that headline is correct. I am indeed writing about a Corvette Stingray. No Oldsmobile Ninety-Eight Regencys or Plymouth Gran Fury Broughams this week; maybe next time. I have an obvious bias for ’70s luxury cars, woody station wagons, and Volvos, but I do like Corvettes. It just takes a really special one to attract my attention, simply because I see so many at shows and cruise nights. As for this one, I just went nuts when I saw it. As you may surmise, the main reason is the color combination: Brands Hatch Green with a lovely matching green interior!

1971 Corvette Stingray front quarter wheel tire badge
Thomas Klockau

My favorite color is green, and my favorite green is jade green, particularly the shade seen on most all Ford Motor Company products circa 1975–79. This is not just a coincidence. My maternal grandparents had a triple-jade 1977 Ford LTD II Brougham when I was really little, and I deeply imprinted on that car!

1971 Corvette Stingray interior full
Thomas Klockau

Today’s featured car was seen last year at the Maple City Cruise Night, held in the small Illinois college town of Monmouth, Illinois. It is less than an hour away from me and I attend every year. This time I met up with my friend Jess (she’s a local), and we wandered around for quite a while—in between stopping in local downtown establishments for refreshments, of course.

1971 Corvette Stingray front
Thomas Klockau

Every year I thoroughly wear myself out walking, and this year was no exception. I wish I’d taken more pictures of this car, but it was right at the time I was ready to go home. I was tired, and it was getting dark. But I still had to stop for a couple minutes and take the pictures seen here, because of that fantastic green paint! Even better, it had a matching dark green interior.

1971 Corvette Stingray rear three quarter
Thomas Klockau

I had a hard time pinning down the year at first, largely because I was on my way back to the car when I finally spotted it. As a result, I foolishly didn’t take a picture of the info sheet on the wiper with the model year on it. I knew it was a 1970–72 Corvette Stingray, but as I’m more into Designer Edition Continental Mark IVs and Cadillac Fleetwood Talismans, I couldn’t immediately pin down the model year.

1971 Corvette Stingray interior
Thomas Klockau

Fortunately, I have the 1983 copy of the Illustrated Corvette Buyer’s Guide (picked up for a dollar at a local antique mall—such a deal!) and was able to discern first, that the green interior was not available in 1972.

1971 Corvette Stingray front three quarter
Thomas Klockau

Green exterior was available all three years, but it was a different shade each model year. In 1970, it was Donnybrooke Green, in ’71 it was Brands Hatch Green, and in ’72 (the last year for chrome front bumpers) it was Elkhart Green. As our featured car had that gorgeous jade hue to it, I was able to positively ID it as a ’71.

1971 Corvette Stingray vintage ad vertical

I didn’t know this color was available on 1971 Corvettes before I saw this car. It is now my favorite 1970–72 Corvette color; prior to now my favorite was probably War Bonnet Yellow or Ontario Orange. But what can I say? I’m a sucker for a green classic car.

1971 Corvette Stingray T Top ad

The 1971 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray wasn’t much different from the 1970, which itself was a minor facelift of the 1968–69 version. The most noticeable exterior difference was the chrome eggcrate grille and squared-off turn signal lenses. Said turn signal lenses went from clear to amber lenses pretty early in production, and there were a few new colors (including the green on this one!), but that was about it.

1971 Corvette Stingray 454 hood detail
Thomas Klockau

Base price was $5496 ($41,668 today) for the coupe and $5259 ($39,871) for the convertible; the 270-horsepower, 350-cubic-inch V-8 was standard, breathing through a single four-barrel carburetor; today’s car has an optional 454 V-8, which was available in 365-hp LS5, 425-hp LS6, and 425-hp ZR2 tunes. A total of 21,801 were built for the 1971 model year.

1971 Corvette Stingray lettering
Thomas Klockau

I keep hoping I’ll see this beauty at another show, but despite attending many of them in 2023, unfortunately I have yet to run across it again.



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    They did not look that nice when new. Painted single stage in St Louis, and not very well to begin with. The green and the real metal bumpers and the Rally Wheels make this car stand out.

    Yes most C3 models had to have paint and body work at arrival to the dealers. Yjey were pretty rough in original form. With so May restored today people forget what they used to be like.

    Love it but could really do without the luggage rack on the back. It is not necessary and takes away from the sporty look to a Corvette. I would have that professionally removed and painted over.

    IMO they look better with the luggage rack. They are handy for storing the T-Tops when on the road; assuming you have the hardware.

    The newer generations of Corvette, C5 onward, out perform the C3 models in both power and handling as well as driveability. BUT, nothing looks like a C3 Stingray. My GOD!

    I have owned a ’71 Coupe for the last 21-1/2 years. I always wanted a “bumper” car, Red/black with a 4-speed and that is what I found after 10 years of searching, only 3 miles from my house. She is a Bloomington Gold winner from ’86 and I have put every nick and scratch on her since I drive it frequently. She goes into storage for the winter. Sometimes, after not seeing her for awhile I think about selling her; but when I see her again in the spring I have to tell her I am sorry for even considering breaking up from such a beautiful girl. Her best looks are at sundown when the light catches her curves just the right way. Thank you Lord for also giving me an understanding wife.

    I bought a new 71 Corvette. Warbonnet Yellow with the green vinyl interior. Don’t see a lot of them. I guess the dealer ordered it in those colors because I bought it off the lot in Aug 71 for $6200 CDN.

    Yellow over green? I can’t imagine why you don’t see them. Well, maybe because that color combo sounds hideous.

    I had a 69 SS Camaro Rally Green, White Hockey Stripes & this Dark Green Interior, 300Hp 350/Automatic. Was a Great Looking car but kept hitting Deer so I Sold It.😵‍💫

    I have a ’70 Donneybrooke Green convertible L-46 with both tops and numbers matching. I have owned it since 1993 and often think about selling it since I drive it so little but I just can’t seem to do it. I see very few green Corvettes of any vintage.

    Best of the greens for early C3.

    Looks like tilt tele steering column was added, should be green like the rest of the interior.

    Great looking car,c3’s are my favorite looking Corvette. The 427 is really nice too. I think the adjusted value is a little off though. Most things are 20 times the dollar value of 1970.

    I have a 72 coupe, 350 Turbo in Targa Blue I have been restoring since 2015. Everything works, even the original clock. Almost everything has been rebuilt or replaced except the engine and I have tried to keep it as original as possible. Having working AC in Florida is a wonderful thing as this car is an original AC car though all components have been replaced to factory spec except the Sanden compressor. The 2000 I had was much faster but I enjoy driving my 72 much more and have always thought the dual bumper c-3 is the best looking model IMHO.

    It’s a beauty! Mine is a ’74 that we have owned for 45 years It doesn’t get driven enough (56,000 miles) but it is so fun to cruise with the T-tops off.

    I purchased an all original, including paint, 1971 Corvette coupe in Brands Hatch Green with green vinyl interior in 1988. It had just turned 50,000 miles. It was an LS5 with a 4 speed. No A/C, no power steering or brakes, and that factory paint did shine when I finished buffing and polishing 17 years of mild use out of it. Everybody loved that color. It didn’t have a luggage rack, either. After nearly 7 years of ownership I sold it to help finance a new home purchase. At first glance I even thought it was my old car, but it isn’t. That was the second most popular color in 1971 with 3,445 produced according to the Black Book.

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