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1976 Corvette Art Prints

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Laser-Etched
Illustrated Corvette Series II - No. 168
Motion Can-Am Spyder Corvette

Illustrated Corvette Series II - No. 168
Motion Can-Am Spyder Corvette
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Illustrated Corvette Series No. 57
1976 Corvette
To read the story, CLICK HERE.

Illustrated Corvette Series No. 58
John Greenwood 1976 IMSA
Racing Corvette
To read the story, CLICK HERE.
11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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Illustrated Corvette Series II - No. 57
1976 Corvette

Illustrated Corvette Series II - No. 58
John Greenwood 1976 IMSA
Racing Corvette
11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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Laser-Etched
Illustrated Corvette Series II - No. 57
1976 Corvette

Laser-Etched
Illustrated Corvette Series II - No. 58
John Greenwood 1976 IMSA
Racing Corvette
11x17 Laser-Etched Print
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11x17 Laser-Etched Print
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1976 Greenwood IMSA Corvette C3-12

1976 Greenwood IMSA Corvette C3-12
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1976 Corvette Coupe Profile 11x17 Parchment Paper Print
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Here's the story:
Illustrated Corvette Series No. 168 Motion Can-Am Spyder Corvette
"The Last of the Motion Corvettes"

By the late ‘60s, big-block Chevys were always contenders against anything from Ford and Mopar. Within the story line of muscle car history, the Baldwin-Motion Supercars are legends. For John Q. Public, a regular muscle car was often times more than enough. Then there were those who wanted more.

In the mid-’60s, Long Island speed shop owner Joel Rosen had a reputation for building tough street and strip cars. Unlike Carroll Shelby’s deal with Ford to build quasi-SCCA Mustangs, Rosen struck with local dealer Baldwin Chevrolet to offer supercar versions of new Chevy muscle cars that were custom built to order and guaranteed to run 11.5 in the quarter-mile with a qualified driver.

From ‘67 through ‘73, Rosen and his team cranked out hundreds of unique Chevy supercars. But his most exotic cars were some of the Corvettes. In their day, Corvettes offered more GT (grand touring) potential than any other American car. While the Phase III SS-427 Corvette could easily smoke any factory 427 Vette, Rosen’s GT Corvettes took things to the next level with unique, custom body work to go along with already stout engine, drive train, and suspension.

The Phase III GT was offered from ‘69 to ‘71. In ‘72 the Baldwin-Motion Maco Shark was released, followed by the Manta Ray and one-off Moray Eel Corvette. All of Joel's special Corvettes were very expensive for their day, so very few were produced. By the mid-70s when the Moray Eel arrived, the “Shark” thing had pretty much run its course. However, there was a new suit of cloths being used on the already menacing SCCA road racing Corvettes. In what was Zora Duntov’s last racer kit option for his beloved Corvette racers, the wide-body kit was co-developed with Corvette racer John Greenwood. During a time of diminishing performance for street Corvettes, Greenwood’s cars gave fans something to cheer about. When John’s new wide-body IMSA Corvette racer debuted in ‘74, people were blown sideways. The terms “Batmobile” and “funny car” immediately came to mind. Most Corvette fans agreed, it was the most exotic-looking racing Corvette ever!

It didn’t take Rosen long to decide to build a street version of the wide-body Greenwood racer. Named the Can-Am Spyder, Joel’s latest GT Corvette would take advantage of the wide-body’s ability to properly cover the widest wheel/tire combo available for street cars of the day. The engine, drive train, and suspension was standard Motion Performance gear, plus a Hone Overdrive that allowed the engine to loaf along at highway cruising speed for better gas mileage. Rosen’s first Phase III GT featured a fastback rear window to open up the back storage area. The Can-Am Spyder took it to the next level with a full rear hatchback, something that Chevrolet wouldn’t do until ‘82 on the Collector Edition. All of the body parts, except for the front windshield and roof panels were fabricated by Motion performance.

The plan was to offer the Spyder in the same manor as Rosen’s previous GT Corvettes - any way the customer wants. Since Joel was precluded by the DOT from making any Motion-modified “new” vehicles, the customer supplied his own Corvette for conversion. Custom features, custom interiors, special badges and graphics, show car-like wheels, and chrome side-exhausts made the Can-Am Spyder something beyond a “regular” Corvette. In a Ferrari-like way, this Corvette had a direct link to racing Corvettes, yet was designed for long trips with room for overnight necessities.

As well-intended as this was, the timing couldn’t have been worse. The nation was in the grip of a deep recession and rising gas prices. Corvettes already cost almost twice as much as a regular Chevy and Rosen’s latest GT machine cost almost twice as much as a regular Corvette. Consequently, only four Can-Am Spyders were built and sold. Baldwin-Motion collector Dan McMichaels owns the red with white stripes prototype and the remaining yellow with red striping cars can not be accounted for.

In an unexpected way, Corvette planners have adopted Rosen’s performance model. Today’s Z06 is not unlike Joel’s Phase III Corvettes. While the ZR1 surpasses the Z06 and does have unique, dedicated body work, it doesn’t take its appearance to a unique extreme the way Rosen’s GT Corvettes did. The C6 may be with us for a few more years. Plenty of time for a Phase III GT version. - KST


Here's the story:
Illustrated Corvette Series No. 57 - 1976 Corvette
"And Still More Refinement"

Depending on what department you worked in at General Motors, it was the best of times, it was the worst of times. Despite our passions for performance, business is business, and not turning a profit can turn automotive gold into lead. (Remember the Fiero?) Fortunately for the Corvette team, the '76 Corvette was golden in an age of non-performance.

Those pesky bean counters couldn't have been much happier with the '76 Corvette. Sales of the Corvette hit an all-time high of 46,558 units. That was up 8,093 units from '75. And considering the hefty price hike in '76, those sales figures were astounding. The base price of the '76 Corvette was $7,606, up $794 from '75. Part of the increase came from inflation and the rest was the fact that the Corvette came with more standard equipment than ever before.

Design and Engineering knew the possibility of a new mid-engine performance Corvette was zero, so they set out to make a better car. Power steering and brakes were now standard equipment. From there, all other improvements were incremental. The base engine was up 15 hp to 180 hp, and the optional "performance" L82 was up 5 hp to 210 hp. The power boost came from allowing the engines to run hotter. To offset the extra heat in the interior, the '76 Corvette had a partial steel underbelly. And to quiet things inside, the air intake was forward of the radiator, eliminating the intake howl from cowl-induction hood.

In the interior, the battery was now a new AC Delco maintenance-free battery. The $164 custom interior option was very popular with the Corvette's new buyers. The small-diameter steering wheel was from a Vega, but had a Corvette horn button.

Like the mid-year C2 Corvettes, exterior changes were slight. The hood was unique to '76, as it was missing the cowl induction features. The rear bumper cover sported a new Corvette badge. There were actually two versions, one with smaller recessed lettering, and the other with larger lettering that wasn't recessed. Also, the air vents on the top of the rear deck were gone. The aluminum Kelsey-Hayes wheels first shown in '73 were finally available as a $299 option. The gymkhana suspension option was up from $7 in '75 to $35 in '76. But for all the add-ons and new parts, the '76 Corvette actually lost weight. Curb weight was down 52 pounds to 3,608. Not a lot, but better than a weight gain.

Older guys and performance addicts called the '76 Corvette "soft," while defenders said it was merely evolving into a Grand Tourer. However, performance was way off. 0-60 time was 7.1 seconds, the 1/4-mile time was 15.3, and top speed was only 124 mph. Considering the times, that was as good as it got. However, there was a guy named Greenwood with a wild-looking, 221-mph IMSA racer (Some called it "The Batmobile") that had everyone's attention. Actually, you couldn't miss it! - K. Scott Teeters


Here's the story:
Illustrated Corvette Series No. 58 - John Greenwood's 1976 IMSA Racing Corvette
"Batmobile IMSA Racer"

John Greenwood was described as "the perfect Corvette guy." He was well financed, blue-collar, and liked getting dirty working on his race car. Also, he was good at building very powerful big-block Chevy engines. In a field of factory-supported SCCA A/Production and Trans-Am cars, Greenwood was a classic underdog the Grumpy Jenkins of road racing. John had been beating up Porsches and BMWs since the early '70s with his homemade, 8,000 rpm ZL-1 Corvettes. His "Spirit of Sebring '76" Corvette was to be the wildest ride of his career.

Although the car was called a "tube framed" car, John started with a stock Corvette steel birdcage frame that was first gusseted for added strength, with the tube frame then welded on. The front suspension used stock mounting points, but was lowered using 25 percent stiffer springs, adjustable Koni shocks, and various size anti-roll bars. The rear suspension used 2.73: 1 gears, coilover shocks, twin A-arms, and anti-rollbars to eliminate squat. Hurst-Airheart NASCAR disc brakes with dual master cylinders provided excellent braking. With the huge factory-option pontoon fenders, John was able to use Sterling alloy wheels 11" x 15" in the front and 17" x 15" in the rear, with Goodyear Blue Streak tires 24.5 x 10-15 on the front and 28.0 x 17-15 on the rear.

Greenwood's ZL-1 engine was bored to 467 cid and made over 700 hp @6,800 rpm and 620 lb-ft of torque at 4000 rpm. The engine used a stock crank, Carillo rods, Isky roller rockers, a dry-sump oil system, and a Lucas fuel injection on a magnesium cross-ram manifold. Transmission was a blueprinted M22 "rock crusher."

John wanted to make a street version of this car. But federal regulations, safety, and liability concerns of the day prevented him. In '76, Greenwood and Dick Smothers won Sebring and took the pole position at Le Mans, but engine trouble took them out of the race. John's Corvette hit 211 mph on the Mulsanne Straight! Not bad for a street racer from Detroit. - K. Scott Teeters


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