1958 Corvette

1958 Corvette Performance & Specifications

Powertrain, Steering, Brakes, Dimensions, & Suspension

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Chevrolet Introduced the Corvette in 1953

By the late 1950s, the infrastructure of the automotive industry had begun a transformation from the monopolistic business of a few, large, corporate giants to a much more competitive and highly segmented marketplace.

For more: 1958 Corvette Research Guide

1958 Corvette – Specifications

1958 Corvette Main Specs

MODEL: 1958 Chevrolet Corvette
BODY STYLE: Two-door convertible, front-engine, rear-wheel drive
MANUFACTURING LOCATION: St. Louis, Missouri
CONSTRUCTION: Fiberglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP or “fiberglass”) body, steel frame with steel and chrome structural & chassis components.
VEHICLE NUMBERS (VIN): J58S100001 – J58S109168
VIN PREFIX: CQ: 283 CUBIC INCH, 230 HORSEPOWER, MANUAL TRANSMISSION
CR: 283 CUBIC INCH, 250 HORSEPOWER, MANUAL TRANSMISSION
CS: 283 CUBIC INCH, 290 HORSEPOWER, MANUAL TRANSMISSION
CT: 283 CUBIC INCH, 245 HORSEPOWER, MANUAL TRANSMISSION
CU: 283 CUBIC INCH, 270 HORSEPOWER, MANUAL TRANSMISSION
DG: 283 CUBIC INCH, 230 HORSEPOWER, AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION
DH: 283 CUBIC INCH, 250 HORSEPOWER, AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION
DJ: 283 CUBIC INCH, 245 HORSEPOWER, AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION
ENGINE BLOCK NUMBER: 3737739, 3756519, 3748770
HEAD NUMBER: 3725306: 265 CUBIC INCH, 210 HP, 225 HP (2-BOLT EXHAUST MANIFOLDS)
3731762: 265 CUBIC INCH, 225 HP, 240 HP (3-BOLT EXHAUST MANIFOLDS)
CARBURETOR NUMBERS: CARTER 2613S #3741089: 283 CUBIC INCH, 270 HP, FRONT CARBURETOR
CARTER 2614S #3741090: 283 CUBIC INCH, 270 HP, REAR CARBURETOR
CARTER 2626S #3744002: 283 CUBIC INCH, 245 HP, FRONT CARBURETOR
CARTER 2627S #3744004: 283 CUBIC INCH, 245 HP, REAR CARBURETOR
CARTER 2669S #3746384: 283 CUBIC INCH, 230 HP
FUEL INJECTION NUMBER: ROCHESTER 7014800: 283 CUBIC INCH, 250 HP
ROCHESTER 7014800R: 283 CUBIC INCH, 290 HP, EARLY PRODUCTION
ROCHESTER 7014900: 283 CUBIC INCH, 250 HP
ROCHESTER 7014900R: 283 CUBIC INCH, 290 HP
ROCHESTER 7014960: 283 CUBIC INCH, 290 HP
ROCHESTER 7017200: 283 CUBIC INCH, 250 HP, LATE PRODUCTION
DISTRIBUTOR NUMBER: 1110890: 283 CUBIC INCH, 230 HORSEPOWER
1110891: 283 CUBIC INCH, 245 HORSEPOWER, 270 HORSEPOWER
1110908: 283 CUBIC INCH, 290 HORSEPOWER, EARLY PRODUCTION
1110914: 283 CUBIC INCH, 290 HORSEPOWER
1110915: 283 CUBIC INCH, 250 HORSEPOWER
GENERATOR NUMBER: 1102043: 283 CUBIC INCH, 230 HP, 245 HP, 250 HP, 270 HP
1102059: 283 CUBIC INCH, 290 HORSEPOWER
AXLE IDENTIFICATION NUMBER AH: 3-SPEED MANUAL TRANSMISSION (3.70:1 RATIO)
AE: POWERGLIDE AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION (3.55:1 RATIO)
AN: LIMITED SLIP DIFFERENTIAL (3.70:1 RATIO)
AP: LIMITED SLIP DIFFERENTIAL (4.11:1 RATIO)
AQ: LIMITED SLIP DIFFERENTIAL (4.56:1 RATIO)
AS: LSD, HEAVY DUTY SUSPENSION AND BRAKES, (3.70:1 RATIO)
AT:LSD, HEAVY DUTY SUSPENSION AND BRAKES, (4.11:1 RATIO)
AU:LSD, HEAVY DUTY SUSPENSION AND BRAKES, (4.56:1 RATIO)
PRODUCTION ENDING VEHICLE: OCT, 1957: 100486, NOV, 1957: 101443, DEC, 1957: 102511, JAN, 1958:103677, FEB, 1958: 104789, MAR, 1958: 105779, APR, 1958: 106544, MAY, 1958: 107489, JUN, 1958: 108192, JUL, 1958: 108840, AUG, 1958: 109168, MAY, 1958: 107489

1958 C1 Corvette Engine

1958 Corvette Powertrain Specifications

Description 4-barrel Carb Dual Carb Dual Carb w. Special Cam  Fuel Injection
Fuel Injection w. Special Cam
Standard RPO 469 RPO 469C RPO 469C RPO 579D
Type: 90 V 90 V 90 V 90 V 90 V
Number of Cylinders 8 8 8 8 8
Displacement (cid): 283 283 283 283 283
Horsepower (gross @ rpm): 230hp @ 4,800 245hp @ 5,000 270hp @ 6,000 250hp @ 5,000 290hp @ 6,200
Torque (lbs.-ft. @ rpm): 300 @ 3,000 300 @ 3,800 285 @ 4,200 305 @ 3,800 290 @ 4,400
Bore Spacing (C/L to C/L) 4.4 inches 4.4 inches 4.4 inches 4.4 inches 4.4 inches
Bore x stroke (in.): 3.875 x 3.00 3.875 x 3.00 3.875 x 3.00 3.875 x 3.00 3.875 x 3.00
Redline (rpm):
Compression ratio: 9.5:1 9.5:1 9.5:1 9.5:1 9.5:1
Idle Speed (RPM) 475 in neutral w/3-speed 475 in neutral w/3-speed 475 in neutral w/3-speed 475 in neutral w/3-speed 475 in neutral w/3-speed
Automatic 779 779 779 779 779
Manual 678 678 678 678 678
Firing Order: 18436572 18436572 18436572 18436572 18436572
Cylinder Number System;
Left Bank: 1-3-5-7 1-3-5-7 1-3-5-7 1-3-5-7 1-3-5-7
Right Bank: 2-4-6-8 2-4-6-8 2-4-6-8 2-4-6-8 2-4-6-8
Recommended Fuel: 94-96 Premium Octane 94-96 Premium Octane 94-96 Premium Octane 94-96 Premium Octane 94-96 Premium Octane
EPA – Three-Speed Manual
Transmission – Average:
12.9 mpg (Motor Trend) 12.9 mpg (Motor Trend) 14.9 mpg (Motor Trend) 13.9 mpg (Motor Trend)

Carburetor Engine Component Specifications

 Description Standard 230hp RPO 469 245hp RPO 469C 270hp
Upper Compression Ring:
Material Cast alloy iron Cast alloy iron Cast alloy iron
Width .184 — .194 .184 — .194 .184 — .194
Thickness .0775 — .0780 .0775 — .0780 .0775 — .0780
Gap .010 — .020 .010 — .020 .010 — .020
Ring Clearance .0012 — .0017 .0012 — .0017 .0012 — .0017
Valve Springs:
Length & Pressure
Valve closed [email protected] 69 — 79 lb. [email protected] 69 — 79 lb. [email protected] 69 — 79 lb.
Valve open [email protected] 159 — 169 lb. [email protected] 159 — 169 lb. [email protected] 159 — 169 lb.
Free length 2.08 2.08 2.08
Damper:
– Number of coils 3.874 — 4.12 3.874 — 4.12 3.874 — 4.12
– Free length 2.00 2.00 2.00
Tappets:
Type Hydraulic Hydraulic Hydraulic
Material Steel Steel Steel
Carburetor:
Make Carter Carter Carter
Model
– front 3744002 3744002
– rear 3744004 3744004
Type 4 barrel, down-draft 4 barrel 4 barrel
Choke Automatic Automatic Automatic
Camshaft:
Ramp inlet
Opening .00474, 10° long .00474, 10° long .0067, 18° long
Closing .00670, 15° long .00670, 15° long .0067, 18° long
Ramp exhaust
Opening .00474, 10° long .00474, 10° long .0107, 29° long
Closing .00670, 15° long .00670, 15° long .0107, 29° long
Tappet Lift
– Inlet .26581 .26581 .2625
– Exhaust .26581 .26581 .2625
  Valve lift
     Inlet  0.3987 0.3987 0.39375
     Exhaust  0.3987 0.3987 0.39375
 Valve lash (normal driving)
     Inlet Zero Zero .008 hot
     Exhaust Zero Zero .018 hot
  Timing Diagram Data:
     Inlet
       Opens (theoretical) 12° 30′ BTC 12° 30′ BTC 35° BTC
       Closes (theoretical) 57° 30′ ABC 57° 30′ ABC 72° ABC
     Exhaust
       Opens (theoretical) 54° 30′ BBC 54° 30′ BBC 76° BBC
       Closes (theoretical) 15° 30′ ATC 15° 30′ ATC 31° ATC
Clutch:
  Type Semi-centrifugal Semi-centrifugal Semi-centrifugal
  Number of coil springs 9 9 9
  Spring pressure (lbs.) 1620 Initial 1620 Initial 1620 Initial
  Drive Lug Lug Lug
  Lining area (sq. in.) 90.72 90.72 90.72
  Rated torque capacity (lb. ft.) 326 326 326
Air Cleaner:
  Make and Type AC oil wetted  AC oil bath  AC oil bath
  Capacity  –  1 Pint  1 Pint
  Filter Element Aluminum wire cactus fiber  cactus fiber
Oil Filter:
  Make AC, Full flow AC, Full flow AC, Full flow
  Capacity (Quartz) 1-1/2 1-1/2 1-1/2
Dual Exhaust System:
  Muffler Type Diffusion & resonance,
reverse flow
Diffusion & resonance,
reverse flow
 Diffusion & resonance,
reverse flow
  Body Size 24×4.06 24×4.06 24×4.06
  Manifold Center take down each branch serving two cylinders Center take down each branch serving two cylinders Center take down each branch serving two cylinders
  Exhaust Pipe Size O.D 2.0 2.0 2.0
  Tall Pipe I.D 1.81 1.81 1.81
  Suspension Individual, rubber insulated
mountings.
Individual, rubber insulated
mountings.
Individual, rubber insulated
mountings.
Fuel System:
  Fuel Tank Two stamped pans
seam welded
Two stamped pans
seam welded
Two stamped pans
seam welded
  Capacity (gallons) 16.4 16.4 16.4
  Mounting   Support by two straps attached to underbody behind seat Support by two straps attached to underbody behind seat Support by two straps attached to underbody behind seat
  Filler In body left side, to rear of driver’s door In body left side, to rear of driver’s door In body left side, to rear of driver’s door
Cooling System:
  Radiator core
     Make Harrison Harrison Harrison
     Type Cellular Cellular Cellular
  Size .22x.550×2.00 .22x.550×2.00 .22x.550×2.00
  Frontal Area (sq. in) 380 380 380
  Capacity 16.5 qts. with heater 16.5 qts. with heater 16.5 qts. with heater

Fuelie (Fuel Injected) Engine Component Specifications

Description (RPO 579 250hp) (RPO 579D 290hp)
Upper Compression Ring:
  Material Cast alloy iron Cast alloy iron
  Width .184 -.194 .184 – .194
  Thickness 0775 – .0780 0775 – .0780
  Gap .010 – 0.020 .010 – 0.020
  Ring Clearance Grove .0012 – .0017 .0012 – .0017
Valve Springs:
  Length & Pressure
     Valve closed [email protected] 69 — 79 lb [email protected] 69 — 79 lb
     Valve open [email protected] 159 — 169 lb. [email protected] 159 — 169 lb.
     Free length 2.08 2.08
  Damper:
     Number of coils 3.874 — 4.12 3.874 — 4.12
     Free length 2.00 2.00
Tappets:
  Type Hydraulic Hydraulic
  Material Steel Steel
Manifold assembly, inlet:
  Material Cast aluminum Cast aluminum
Fuel:
  System Fuel Injection Fuel Injection
  Make Rochester Products Rochester Products
Fuel Filter:
  Make AC AC
  Model GF43 GF43
  Location Mounted on engine top cover Mounted on engine top cover
Camshaft:
  Ramp inlet
     Opening .00474, 10° long .00474, 10° long
     Closing .00670, 15° long .00670, 15° long
  Ramp exhaust
     Opening .00474, 10° long  .0107, 29° long
     Closing .00670, 15° long .0107, 29° long
  Tappet Lift
     Inlet .26581 .2625
     Exhaust .26581 .2625
  Valve Lift
     Inlet .3987 .39375
     Exhaust .3987 .39375
  Valve lash (normal driving)
     Inlet Zero .008 hot
     Exhaust Zero .018 hot
  Timing Diagram Data:
     Inlet
       Opens (theoretical) 12° 30′ BTC 35° BTC
       Closes (theoretical) 57° 30′ ABC 72° ABC
     Exhaust
       Opens (theoretical) 54° 30′ BBC 76° BBC
       Closes (theoretical) 15° 30′ ATC 31° ATC
Clutch:
  Type Semi-centrifugal Semi-centrifugal
  Number of coil springs 9 9
  Spring pressure (lbs.) 1620 initial 1620 initial
  Drive Lug Lug
  Lining area (sq. in.) 90.72 90.72
  Rated torque capacity (lb. ft.) 326 326
Air Cleaner:
  Make AC AC
  Type Dry Dry
  Filter Element Paper Paper
Oil Filter:
  Make AC, Full flow AC, Full flow
  Capacity (Quartz) 1-1/2 1-1/2
Dual Exhaust System:
  Muffler Type Diffusion & resonance, reverse flow Straight thru
  Body Size 24×4.06
  Manifold Center take down each branch serving two cylinders
  Exhaust Pipe Size O.D 2.0
  Tall Pipe I.D 1.81
  Suspension Individual, rubber insulated
mountings.
Fuel System:
  Fuel Tank Two stamped pans seam welded Two stamped pans seam welded
  Capacity (gallons) 16.4 16.4
  Mounting   Support by two straps attached to underbody behind the seat Support by two straps attached to underbody behind the seat
  Filler In body left side, to the rear of driver’s door In body left side, to the rear of driver’s door
Cooling System:
  Radiator core
     Make Harrison Harrison
     Type Cellular Cellular
  Size .22x.550×2.00 .22x.550×2.00
  Frontal Area (sq. in) 380 380
  Capacity 16.5 qts. with heater 16.5 qts. with heater

Manual Transmission / Gear Ratios

3-Speed Close Ratio 4-Speed (RPO 685)
1st Gear: 2.21:1 2.20:1
2nd Gear: 1.32:1 1.66:1
3rd Gear: 1.00:1 1:31:1
4th Gear: N/A 1.00:1
Reverse: 2.21:1 2.25:1

Powerglide Automatic Transmission RPO 313/ Gear Ratios

Drive 1.82-1:1
Low 1.82:1
Reverse 1.82:1

1957 C1 Corvette Engine

1958 Corvette Car Dimensions

Hardtop

1958 C1 Corvette Car Dimensions - Hardtop

Exterior Dimensions (Hardtop) Interior Dimensions (Hardtop)
Wheelbase: 101.85 Inches Headroom: 42.3 Inches
Overall Length: 177.2 Inches Shoulder Room: 49.4 Inches
Total Body Width: 72.8 Inches Hip Room: 49.4 Inches
Overall Height: 51 Inches Leg Room: 44.2 Inches
Front Track Width: 57 Inches
Rear Track Width: 59 Inches
Min. Ground Clearance 5.8 Inches

Softtop

1958 C1 Corvette Car Dimensions - Softtop

Exterior Dimensions (Soft Top) Interior Dimensions (Soft Top)
Wheelbase: 101.85 Inches Headroom: 42.3 Inches
Overall Length: 177.2 Inches Shoulder Room: 49.4 Inches
Total Body Width: 72.8 Inches Hip Room: 49.1 Inches
Overall Height: 51 Inches Leg Room: 44.2 Inches
Front Track Width: 57 Inches
Rear Track Width: 59 Inches
Min. Ground Clearance 5.8 Inches

Capacities

Capacities Specs
Passenger Capacity: 2 Passengers
Curb Weight (LBS/KG):
  Manual 2,926
  Automatic 3,034
Fuel Capacity (GALLONS): 16.4
Engine Oil Capacity (QTS.): 5 (capacity of crankcase less filter – refill)
Coolant Capacity (qts.): 17 (with heater)
Battery: 12 volt, 9-plate, 53AH

1958 Corvette Brakes, Wheels, Steering & Suspension

Brakes:
Type: Servo – 4 Wheel Hydraulic (Heavy Duty, RPO 684 Optional)
Power brake type: None
Drum diameter, front (in.): 11
Drum diameter, rear (in.): 11
Effective area (sq. in.): 157 (121 with Heavy Duty brake option)

 

Wheels/Tires
Wheel Type (Standard): Short Spoke Disk, Pressed Steel
Tire Size: 6.70 — 15 — 4 Ply Tubeless (standard), 6.70 — 15 — 4 Ply White & Blackwall (optional)
Front & Rear Wheels: 15″
Tires, type: Rayon Cord
Revolutions at 30mph: 755
Inflation (cold) 24 lbs. Front & Rear

 

Steering
Type: Semi-reversible recirculating ball
Make: Saginaw
Ratio: 21.0:1
Wheel Diameter (in): 17.25
Turns, Stop to Start
Turn Diameter (curb to curb) 36.5 ft. right — 37 ft. left (outside front), 38.5 ft. right — 39 ft. left (outside front)

 

Front Suspension Unitized, Independent, Short, and Long Arm
Front Springs: Own, coil
  Make & Type Chrome alloy steel .547 — .553
  Material & Gauges Total 9.75; active 7.94
  Number of Coils Outside 4.30; pitch 3.752
  Diameter Free 13.45; working [email protected] 1145 lb.
  Height 9.72
  Height Under Curb Weight 800 lb.
  Capacity At Ground
  Deflection Rate
     At Spring 300 lb.
     At Wheel 110 lb.
Front Shock Absorbers:
  Make & Type Delco, direct double acting
  Mounting Vertically from lower control arm through coil spring to front suspension cross member
  Model Number 538F
  Valve Code 3.5G6/axr/P 1.25
  Piston Diameter and Travel 1.00×4.68
Rear Suspension Outrigger mounted semi-elliptical leaf springs
Rear Springs: Own, coil
– Make & Type Own, semi-elliptic
– Material Alloy steel
– Length & Width 51×2.0
– Spring Slips Clinch type = 3, Bolt type = 1, Total = 4
– Number of Leaves 4
– Leaf Thickness Number 1 & 3 = .282, Number 2 = .313, Total = 1.159
– Capacity At pad = 575 lb., At ground = 725 lb.
Rear Shock Absorbers:
  Make & Type Delco, direct double acting
  Mounting Stem attached to slotted holes in flanged “U” shaped rear cross member, eye attached at the bottom to an anchor bolt-on rear spring “U” bolt and shock absorber anchor bolt plate
  Model Number 560P
  Valve Code 4D6/oxh/j 1.25
  Piston Diameter and Travel 1.0×6.69

1958 C1 Corvette

1958 Corvette Performance

Performance Results Standard RPO 469 RPO 469C RPO 579 RPO 579
3 Speed Transmission
Performance weight (lbs.) 3204 3214 3214 3191 3191
Pounds/gross horsepower 13.93 13.12 11.90 12.78 11.00
Pounds/cu.in. piston displacement 11.33 11.36 11.36 11.24 11.24
 Gross horsepower/cu.in. displacement .813 .866 .954 .883 1.025
 Power displacement (cu.ft./mile) 228.7 228.7 228.7 228.7 228.7
Displacement factor (cu.ft./mile) 142.94 142.94 142.94 143.34 143.34
 0 – 60 mph (seconds) 9.2 7.6 –
 Top Speed (mph) 103.1 112
Powerglide Transmission
 Performance weight (lbs.) 3305 3314 3288
 Pounds/gross horsepower 14.37 13.53 13.15
 Pounds/cu.in. piston displacement 11.68 11.71 11.62
 Gross horsepower/cu.in. displacement .813 .866 .883
 Power displacement (cu.ft./mile) 219.5 219.5 219.5
 Displacement factor (cu.ft./mile) 132.83 132.47 133.52
 0 – 60 mph (seconds)
 Top Speed (mph)
4-Speed Transmission
Performance weight (lbs.) 3217 3227 3227 3204 3204
Pounds/gross horsepower 13.90 13.17 11.95 12.82 11.05
Pounds/cu.in. piston displacement 11.37 11.40 11.40 11.32 11.32
Gross horsepower/cu.in. displacement .813 .866 .954 .883 1.025
Power displacement (cu.ft./mile) 228.7 228.7 228.7 228.7 228.7
 Displacement factor (cu.ft./mile) 142.18 141.74 141.74 142.76 142.76
 0 – 60 mph (seconds) 6.9
Top Speed (mph) 113.6 118.7

(0 – 60 and top speed times courtesy of Motor Trend, March 1958)