First Corvette C7.R to sell at public auction commands $855K result

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The no. 3 Corvette races to a GTLM class victory during the 2015 Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona. Pratt & Miller

How much is a race-winning Corvette worth? In the case of the C7.R, we’re just now finding out.

Four months after this pedigreed C7.R appeared for sale at Fantasy Junction, with an asking price of $950K, it appeared on Bring a Trailer. On March 1 it sold for $855K, premium included. Though it may appear that the seller’s original ask was overly ambitious, the truth is that neither we nor the seller have many reference points: This is the first C7.R to appear at public auction.

Let’s make sense of the numbers.

corvette c7.r on track
Pratt & Miller

It was immediately obvious that this was a desirable car. The advent of the C8, and subsequent C8.R, marked the C7.R is the final front-engine model campaigned by Corvette Racing, and the no. 3 car boasts two major victories on its race resume—at the Rolex 24 at Daytona in 2015, and at the Sebring 12 Hours later that year. A qualifying accident prevented the car from racing in the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans, but nothing could invalidate its podium finish the year before, when it finished just 30 seconds behind AF Corse’s no. 51 Ferrari.

The C7.R is a formidable member of the Corvette Racing dynasty. Indeed, we compared the C7.R in our previous writeup to the renowned L88, which was similarly in a class of its own when compared to the rest of its Corvette contemporaries. Streetable—but just barely—the big-block monster was intended to be a roll cage away from the race track. Chevrolet dialed down advertising to a whisper when talking to its regular Corvette buyer base and instead sought to court race teams. Sure, you could compare stats and quarter-mile times of the L88 to those of, say, the 454-equipped Vette, but it really wasn’t a fair fight. The L88 was a purpose-built race car thinly disguised as a streetable hot rod. It stood head-and-shoulders above the rest of the Corvette performance lineup, similar to the C7.R.

“This is the biggest, baddest C7 in existence,” says Greg Ingold, associate editor of the Hagerty Price Guide.

What about the C7 ZR-1, you ask? As of 2019, you could get a ZR-1—if you had the cash. That $125K, 755-hp monster was insane, but the C7.R remains in “a totally different league of crazy,” as Ingold puts it. As a factory-campaigned race car, the model was never available to the public. At least, not until this no. 3 C7.R appeared for auction.

Because the contemporary Z06’s LT4 surpassed BoP requirements, it boasts a time-proven Pratt & Miller-developed, naturally-aspirated Chevy small-block. The cabin is all-out race car, from the exposed carbon-fiber panels of the doors to the button-strewn steering yoke and no-nonsense roll cage.

 

Was the $855K price reasonable? That’s hard to gauge. “This is a case in which whatever the buyer and seller can agree upon is the market price,” Ingold says. Clearly, the seller hoped for a final number closer to the $1M mark, and, by offering the Vette on Bring a Trailer after the original Fantasy Junction listing, wanted to give it the best chance possible.

In any case, this is a big sale of a worthy car. No. 3’s maiden auction voyage is now officially in the record books.

Like this article? Check out Hagerty Insider, our website devoted to tracking trends in the collector vehicle market.

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