1987 C4 Corvette

1987 Corvette Overview

During the middle of the 1986 model year, General Motors had acquired a controlling interest in Lotus; a small, British automotive manufacturing company. Already known around the world for having an enviable reputation in Formula One Grand Prix racing and building some truly amazing automobiles, General Motors saw in their acquisition the opportunity to explore advancements in their own engine development programs.

Model: 1987 Corvette
Generation: C4 Corvette
Type: 2 Door Coupe, 2 Door Convertible
Available Colors: Silver Metallic, Medium Grey Metallic, Medium Blue Metallic, Yellow, White, Black, Gold Metallic, Silver Beige Metallic, Copper Metallic, Medium Brown Metallic, Dark Red Metallic, Bright Red, Silver/Grey, Grey/Black, White/Silver, Silver Beige/Medium Brown
Engine: 350CI 240 Horsepower, Tuned-Port Fuel Injected L98 V8 Engine.
VIN: 1G1YY2182H5100001 – 1G1YY2182H5130632
Transmission: 4-speed automatic (standard), 4+3 speed manual (optional)
Original Price: $27,999.00 (Coupe), $33,172.00 (Conv.)
Units Produced: 30,632
Specs: 1987 Corvette Spec List

In fact, Tony Rudd, Lotus’s technical director, had entered into an agreement with GM to design twin-cam, sixteen-valve cylinder heads for the L98 engine.  The challenge that they were to be faced with was how to squeeze the additional hardware into an already limited amount of engine space.

At the same time, other significant advancements were being made within the existing Corvette program.  The return of the Corvette Convertible in 1986 had represented the first re-uniting of the coupe and the convertible (offered in the same model year) in more than a decade.  Despite less than stellar sales numbers in its first year, the return of the convertible option was well received by critics and Corvette enthusiasts alike.

Many Corvette purists pointed out that the Corvette had began its existence as a convertible, and it seemed only logical that General Motors should continue to offer the convertible option as part of the Corvette’s heritage.  In fact, many Corvette enthusiasts had strongly criticized the absence of a convertible option when it had been previously discontinued at the onset of the 1976 model year.

1987 Corvette wheels
The 1987 Corvette wheels were trimmed with Argent Grey paint instead of black paint as with the 1984-1986 models.

So, for 1987, both the coupe and the convertible returned, but not without some noteworthy changes to both variants of the vehicle.

Cosmetically, the Corvette was virtually unchanged from the 1986 model, save for one, immediately identifiable feature – the wheels.  For the 1984 and 1985 models, the wheels center cap and radial slots had been painted black.  In 1986, only the slots featured the black paint.

For the 1987 model year, the black paint was eliminated completely from the wheels, and both the caps and slots were now treated to an argent gray coloring.

In an ongoing effort to reduce engine friction with the intent of improving both engine performance and fuel economy, Chevrolet added rollers to the hydraulic lifters.  In doing so, the engine performance of the 1987 Corvette was increased by ten horsepower, taking the engine’s overall horsepower rating to 240hp.  The engine torque was also improved by 15lbs/ft., bringing it to a total of 345.  In addition to the rollers, they also added rocker-arm covers with raised rails to help prevent oil leaks.  A thicker-core radiator and a second electric cooling fan were also included to further aid in maintaining cooler engine temperatures.

Additionally, a finned power-steering cooler was included.

DID YOU KNOW: Although Callaway Cars, Inc. is known around the world for its prestigious, high-performance, turbocharged variants to high-end production sports cars, they garnered this reputation by developing a number of special edition Corvettes. Perhaps their most impressive accomplishment to date is the development of the “Sledgehammer Corvette”, a specially modified C4 Callaway Corvette which is capable of reaching speeds in excess of 250mph, with a current, recorded top speed of 254.76 miles per hour!

1987 Corvette L98
The 1987 Corvette L98 Engine featured new hydraulic lifters that included newly installed rollers.

In addition to the engine upgrades, a second suspension option was made available, but only on manual-transmission-equipped coupes.

Designated with option code Z52 and priced at $470.00, this “sports handling package” option was essentially a softer version of the Z51 package, with the wider 9.5 inch wheels, plus a solid and thicker front anti-roll bar, new gas-charged shocks, quick-ratio steering, and all but one of the chassis stiffeners originally developed for the convertible.

Spring rates and bushings were carried over from the base chassis.  The original Z51 package was also offered as an option in 1987, and featured much of the same hardware as the Z52 option, although it included much stiffer springs and front lower-control-arm bushings, plus a solid (instead of link type) rear stabilizer.

The Z52 option was praised by automotive enthusiast magazines for its improved ride quality and its relatively unchanged handling differences.

A couple of other options found their way into the 1987 Corvette.  Although these options were not new to General Motors as a whole, they were unique to the Corvette in that they had never been featured in any of its earlier forms.  A low-tire pressure indicator made a brief appearance in late 1986 (for the 87 model year).  The low-tire pressure indicator signaled a drop in pressure of one pound per square inch on any wheel, via a dash panel display.  Carrying a hefty price tag of an additional $325 dollars, it was soon discovered that some of the installed units could actually trigger the same hardware in other Corvettes equipped with this same option, causing false alarms and inaccurate pressure reporting for both vehicles.

Ultimately, this option was short lived in the 1987 Corvette, though it would later return for the 1989 model and be met with resounding success.  Another “existing option” that made its way into the 1987 Corvette was electronic air conditioning.   While it had been available in the Corvette coupe in 1986, the option was made available for both the coupe and the convertible for the 1987 model year.

Throughout the history of the Corvette, a number of talented individuals have contributed to the advancement of the advancement of this amazing sports car as it forged a name for itself at the racetrack. Perhaps the most famous of these individuals is Zora Arkus-Duntov, whose history with the Corvette is so significant, that he has often been nicknamed the “Father of the Corvette.” Further, his technical contributions to the C1 and C2 Corvette combined with his unrelenting commitment to the idea that the Corvette should be recognized as a world class contending race-car helped to solidify Corvette’s place in some of the most prestigious racing circuits around the world.

New for 1987 was an aftermarket option that was offered to consumers when ordering their Corvettes from the factory.  Although it was not a factory option, speed-thirsty consumers could order a Callaway Twin-Turbo Engine package through participating dealerships.

1987 Callaway Twin-Turbo Corvette
1987 Callaway Twin-Turbo Corvette

Under the designation RPO B2K, the twin turbo option was rated at 345 bhp and 465 lbs/ft of torque.  When installed, it allowed the Corvette to reach a top speed of 177.9 miles per hour with .60 overdrive gearing.  Unfortunately for most consumers, the Twin-Turbo Engine package included a steep price tag of an additional $19,995 (over the base price of the Corvette), putting it well out of reach for many Corvette consumers.  Still, for those that did order their Corvette with this option, their Corvette would be shipped from Bowling Green (upon its completion) to Callaway Engineering in Old Lyme, Connecticut where it would be modified to include the B2K option.

The 1987 Callaway Corvette Twin Turbo Engine.
The 1987 Callaway Corvette Twin Turbo Engine.

Even in its base form, the 1987 Corvette was proving itself as a genuine performance car.  Motor Trend Magazine performed a series of time trials with a Corvette Convertible and recorded some remarkable results for its day.

Equipped with a manual transmission and the newly improved 240 horsepower version of the L98 engine, the 1987 Corvette Convertible accelerated from 0-60 in just 6.3 seconds and ran a respectable 15.11 seconds in the quarter mile, reaching a speed of 93.8 miles per hour.

Although Corvette’s performance numbers were steadily on the rise, so too was its price.  At $27,999 for the coupe and $33,172 for the convertible, many critics felt the Corvette was becoming too pricy for its own sustainability.  Still, when compared to European cars of the same caliber, Corvette was still a better value then most exotic cars in its price range.

For the 1987 model year, Corvette sales did continue to decline, although overall sales were still respectable with a total sales yield of 30,632 cars total, of which the Corvette convertible accounted for 10,625 units, which was actually an increase of 3,400 convertible sales over the 1986 model year.

Additionally, a total of 184 Callaway twin-turbo models were also sold that year.

1987 Corvette ConvertibleBy the end of the 1987 model year, Tony Rudd came back to David McLellan with the conclusion that there was no viable way to re-invent the L98 engine.

While General Motors had managed to moderately push the L98’s horsepower limitations in the mid-eighties, the respectable, though relatively unimpressive numbers represented the restrictions built into the engine itself.

After much review with McLellan of the many modification pursuits he’d undertaken to improve the performance of the L98 engine, Rudd ultimately won his case that GM’s only chance for success was to take this engine program in an entirely new direction.

Ironically, in pursuing this endeavor, Rudd would begin a journey that would ultimately lead to the development of the latest, and arguably one of the greatest, engine incarnations of all time – the LT5 – but that development would be another three years in the making.


See full 1987 C4 Corvette Image Gallery

 

1987 Corvette Specifications

1987 Corvette Main Specs

MODEL: 1987 Chevrolet Corvette
BODY STYLE: Two-door Coupe/Hatchback, front engine, rear wheel drive
MANUFACTURING LOCATION: Bowling Green, Kentucky
CONSTRUCTION: Fiberglass body, unibody construction with partial, front frame including both steel and stainless steel components.
VEHICLE NUMBERS (VIN): 1G1YY2182H5100001 THRU 1G1YY2182H5130632
VIN SUFFIX: ZJN: 350 CUBIC INCH, 240 HORSEPOWER, AUTO TRANSMISSION
ZLC: 350 CUBIC INCH, 240 HORSEPOWER, MANUAL, ENGINE OIL COOLER
ZLA: 350 CUBIC INCH, 240 HORSEPOWER, AUTO, ENGINE OIL COOLER
ZLB: 350 CUBIC INCH, 240 HORSEPOWER, EXPORT
ENGINE BLOCK NUMBER: 14093638: ALL
HEAD NUMBER: 14101128: ALL

1987 Corvette Pricing & Options

CODE: DESCRIPTION: QUANTITY: RETAIL PRICE:
1YY07
Base Corvette Sport Coupe
20,007
$27,799.00
1YY67
Base Corvette Convertible
10,625
$33,172.00
AC1
Power Passenger Seat
17,123
$240.00
AC3
Power Driver Seat
29,561
$240.00
AQ9
Sport Seats, leather
14,119
$1,025.00
AR9
Base Seats, leather
14,561
$400.00
AU3
Power Door Locks
29,748
$190.00
B2K
Callaway Twin Turbo (not GM installed)
188
$19,995.00
B4P
Radiator Boost Fan
7,291 $75.00
C2L
Dual Removable Roof Panels (coupe)
5,017
$915.00
24S Removable Roof Panel, blue tint (coupe) 8,883
$615.00
64S
Removable Roof Panel, bronze tint (coupe)
5,766
$615.00
C68
Electronic Air Conditioning Control
20,875
$150.00
DL8 Twin Remote Heated Mirrors (convertible) 6,840
$35.00
D74
Illuminated Driver Vanity Mirror
14,992
$58.00
D84
Two-Tone Paint (coupe)
1,361
$428.00
FG3
Delco-Bilstein Shock Absorbers
1,957 $189.00
G92 Performance Axle Ratio, 3.07:1 7,286 $22.00
KC4 Engine Oil Cooler 6,679 $110.00
K34
Cruise Control
29,594
$185.00
MM4
4-Speed Manual Transmission
4,298
$0.00
NN5
California Emission Requirements
5,423
$99.00
UL5
Radio Delete
247
-$256.00
UM6
AM-FM Stereo Cassette
2,236
$132.00
UU8 Stereo System, Delco-Bose 27,721
$905.00
V01
Heavy-Duty Radiator
7,871
$40.00
Z51
Performance Handling Package (coupe)
1,596
$795.00
Z52
Sport Handling Package
12,662
$470.00
Z6AE
Rear Window+Side Mirror Defog (coupe)
19,043
$165.00

1987 Callaway

1987 Corvette Exterior & Interior Colors

Exterior Colors

CODE EXTERIOR TOTAL SOFT TOP INTERIOR COLOR OPTIONS
13
Silver Metallic
 767
Black, White
Graphite, Medium Gray
18 Medium Grey Metallic 1,035 Black, White Graphite, Medium Gray, Red
20
Medium Blue Metallic
2,677 Black, White Blue, Graphite
35 Yellow 1,051 Black, White Graphite
40 White 3,097 Black, Saddle, White
Blue, Bronze, Graphite, Medium Gray, Red, Saddle
41 Black 5,101
Black, Saddle, White
Graphite, Medium Gray, Red, Saddle
53
Gold Metallic
397
Black, Saddle
Graphite, Saddle
59
Silver Beige Metallic
950 Black Bronze, Graphite
66
Copper Metallic
87 Black, Saddle Graphite, Saddle
69
Medium Brown Metallic
245 Saddle Bronze, Saddle
74
Dark Red Metallic
5,578
Black, Saddle, White
Graphite, Saddle
81
Bright Red
8,285
Black, Saddle, White
Graphite, Red, Saddle
13/18
Silver/Gray
403 NONE Graphite, Medium Gray, Red
18/41
Gray/Black
316 NONE Graphite, Medium Gray
40/13
White/Silver
195 NONE Graphite, Medium Gray
59/69 Silver Beige/Med.Brown 447 NONE Bronze

Exterior Colors

1987 Corvette

Interior Colors

1987 Corvette Colors Interior

1987 Callaway

1987 Corvette Powertrain Specifications

Engine: L98 5.7 OHV 350 V-8. 
Cylinders: V8
Block Material:
Cast Iron Alloy
Displacement: 5.7 Litre/350 Cubic Inches
Bore & Stroke: 4.00 x 3.48 inches
Valvetrain: OHV, 2 valves per cyl.
Cylinder Head Material: Cast Iron Alloy
Cylinder Block Deck Height: 9.025 Inches
Compression Ratio: 9.00:1
Horsepower: 240 HP @ 4,000 RPM
Torque: 345 lb-ft @ 3,200 rpm
Fuel Delivery: Tuned-Port Fuel Injection
Fuel Capacity: 20.0 Gallons
Oil Capacity: 4.0 Quarts (Without Filter)
Total Dressed Engine Weight (Dry): 585.7 lbs
Transmission: 4+3 Speed Manual (4 Speed Manual with Overdrive in 3rd and 4th), 4-Speed Automatic
Standard Axle Ratio: 2.59:1 (Automatic), 3.07:1 (Manual)

1987 Corvette Wheels, Suspension & Brakes

Suspension (Coupe)

Front Suspension Single fiberglass composite mono-leaf transverse spring with unequal-length aluminum control arms and stabilizer bar.
Rear Suspension Fully independent five-link system with transverse fiberglass single-leaf springs, aluminum upper/lower trailing links and strut-rod tie-rod assembly

Wheels & Tires (Coupe)

Front Tires P255 / 60VR16
Rear Tires P255 / 60VR16
Front Wheels Wheels: 16 x 8
Front Wheels Wheels: 16 x 8

Brakes (Coupe)

Front Brakes Power Disc Brakes
Rear Brakes Power Disc Brakes

1987 Corvette Exterior Dimensions

Coupe Dimensions

1987 Corvette Dimensions

Exterior Dimensions (Coupe) Interior Dimensions (Coupe)
Wheelbase: 96.2 Inches Headroom: N/A
Overall Length: 176.5 Inches Shoulder Room: N/A
Total Body Width: 71.0 Inches Hip Room: N/A
Overall Height: 46.7 Inches Leg Room: N/A
Front Track Width: 59.6 Inches
Rear Track Width: 60.4 Inches
Min. Ground Clearance 4.5 Inches

Convertible Dimensions

Exterior Dimensions (Coupe) Interior Dimensions (Coupe)
Wheelbase: 96.2 Inches Headroom: N/A
Overall Length: 176.5 Inches Shoulder Room: N/A
Total Body Width: 71.0 Inches Hip Room: N/A
Overall Height: 46.7 Inches Leg Room: N/A
Front Track Width: 59.6 Inches
Rear Track Width: 60.4 Inches
Min. Ground Clearance 4.5 Inches

Capacities

Capacities
Passenger Capacity 2 – Driver & Passenger
Curb Weight (lbs) 3,216 (Coupe), 3,279 (Convertible)
Interior Passenger Volume (cu. ft) 8.4
Interior Trunk Volume (cu. ft) 24 (approximately)
Fuel Capacity (gallons): 20.0
Coolant capacity without heater (qts.) 21.6
Battery: 12 Volt, 3,500 Watts
Generator Output: 14-22 Amps

1987 Callaway

1987 Corvette Performance Results

Performance Results
0-30 MPH: 2.4 Seconds
0-60 MPH: 5.8 Seconds
0-100 MPH: 14.4 Seconds @ 96.0 mph
QUARTER MILE: N/A
TOP SPEED: 150 mph

1987 Callaway

1987 Corvette Vehicle Identification Numbers (VIN)

VIN Range 1G1YY2182H5100001 – 1G1YY2182H5130632
1 (First Digit) 1 – United States
G (Second Digit) Manufacturer.  G – General Motors
1 (Third Digit) Manufacturer Division. 1 – Chevrolet
YY (Fourth & Fifth Digits) Make of Car. Y – Corvette
2/3 (Sixth Digit) 2 – Two Door Hatchback Coupe, 3 – Two Door Convertible
1 (Seventh Digit) Type of Restraint System.  1 – Passive Restraint System.
8 (Eighth Digit) Type of Engine.  8 – L98: 5.7 Liter, 350CI Engine with Tuned-Port Injection
2 (Ninth Digit) Check Digit.
H (Tenth Digit) The Model Year. H – 1987
5 (Eleventh Digit) Location of the Assembly Plant. 5 – Bowling Green, Kentucky
1XXXXX (Twelfth thru Seventeenth Digits) Production Sequence Numbers.

The last six digits begin at 100001 and run thru 130632, accounting for each of the 30,632 Corvette Coupes/Convertibles built in 1987. Each Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) is unique to an individual car.

For all 1987 Corvettes, the Vehicle Identification Number was stamped on a plate on the inner vertical surface of the left windshield pillar visible through the windshield.

The Check Digit is used to calculate the characters in the serial number and gives it a single digit code that can be used to verify the serial number is legitimate. (Note: The Check digit number varies depending on each specific VIN number.)

1987 Callaway

1987 Corvette Factory Options

CODE: DESCRIPTION: QUANTITY: RETAIL PRICE:
1YY07
Base Corvette Sport Coupe
20,007
$27,799.00
1YY67
Base Corvette Convertible
10,625
$33,172.00
AC1
Power Passenger Seat
17,123
$240.00
AC3
Power Driver Seat
29,561
$240.00
AQ9
Sport Seats, leather
14,119
$1,025.00
AR9
Base Seats, leather
14,561
$400.00
AU3
Power Door Locks
29,748
$190.00
B2K
Callaway Twin Turbo (not GM installed)
188
$19,995.00
B4P
Radiator Boost Fan
7,291 $75.00
C2L
Dual Removable Roof Panels (coupe)
5,017
$915.00
24S  Removable Roof Panel, blue tint (coupe) 8,883
$615.00
64S
Removable Roof Panel, bronze tint (coupe)
5,766
$615.00
C68
Electronic Air Conditioning Control
20,875
$150.00
DL8  Twin Remote Heated Mirrors (convertible) 6,840
$35.00
D74
Illuminated Driver Vanity Mirror
14,992
$58.00
D84
Two-Tone Paint (coupe)
1,361
$428.00
FG3
Delco-Bilstein Shock Absorbers
1,957 $189.00
G92 Performance Axle Ratio, 3.07:1 7,286 $22.00
KC4 Engine Oil Cooler 6,679 $110.00
K34
Cruise Control
29,594
$185.00
MM4
4-Speed Manual Transmission
4,298
$0.00
NN5
California Emission Requirements
5,423
$99.00
UL5
Radio Delete
247
-$256.00
UM6
AM-FM Stereo Cassette
2,236
$132.00
UU8 Stereo System, Delco-Bose 27,721
$905.00
V01
Heavy-Duty Radiator
7,871
$40.00
Z51
Performance Handling Package (coupe)
1,596
$795.00
Z52
Sport Handling Package
12,662
$470.00
Z6AE
Rear Window+Side Mirror Defog (coupe)
19,043
$165.00

Base Corvette Roadster (1YY07)

  • The base price of the 1987 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe without any optional equipment.
  • A 350 cubic inch, 240 horsepower engine, 4-speed automatic transmission, removable body-color roof panel, and cloth seats were included in the base price.
  • A reduction in friction from the introduction of roller valve lifters (new for 1987) resulted in a power increase to 240hp, up 5hp from 1986’s aluminum-head engine.

Base Corvette Convertible (1YY67)

  • The base price of the 1987 Corvette Convertible without any optional equipment.
  • A 350 cubic inch, 240 horsepower engine, 4-speed automatic transmission, collapsable soft top, and cloth seats were included in the base price.
  • A reduction in friction from the introduction of roller valve lifters (new for 1987) resulted in a power increase to 240hp, up 5hp from 1986’s aluminum-head engine.

Power Passenger Seat (AC1)

  • Optional, six-way, adjustable passenger seat.

Power Driver Seat (AC3)

  • Optional, six-way, adjustable driver seat.

Sports Seat, Leather (AQ9)

  • Special sport seats that featured inflatable lumbar support and power-adjusted side bolsters.

Base Seats, Leather (AR9)

  • Leather cover option for the standard, base driver and passenger seats.

Power Door Locks (AU3)

  • Electronic locking system that replaced standard, manual door locks.

Callaway Twin Turbo (not GM installed) (B2K)

  • Addition of Callaway Twin Turbos to the existing L98 engine.
  • This option generated a specific equipment build with standard engines at the Corvette assembly plant. The cars were then drop-shipped to Callaway’s Connecticut shop for installation of Callaway-modified twin-turbo engines.
  • This is not a factory installed option. When introduced in 1987, it could be ordered through participating Chevrolet dealers. Fully assembled Corvettes were then shipped from the Bowling Green Corvette plant to Callaway Engineering in Old Lyme, Connecticut, where it received engine (and other) modifications.
  • The 1987 Callaway Corvette had performance ratings of 345 horsepower and 465 lb.-ft torque, and reached a top speed of 177.9 miles per hour when equipped with the .60 overdrive gearing.
  • The first four Callaway Corvettes used replacement LF5 (truck) shortblocks, although all subsequent Corvettes were equipped with modified (reworked) Corvette L98 engines. Additionally, all 1987 Corvettes had manual transmissions and none were equipped for sale in California.
  • 123 were coupes, 65 were convertibles.

Radiator Boost Fan (B4P)

  • An oscillating fan placed in front of the radiator that is used to push air through the radiator.

Dual Removable Roof Panels (coupe) (C2L)

  • Included both a tinted, transparent glass top and a painted top.

Removable Roof Panels, blue tint (coupe) (24S)

  • Blue tinted removable glass top.

Removable Roof Panels, bronze tint (coupe) (64S)

  • Bronze tinted removable glass top.

Electronic Air Conditioning Control (C68)

  • Air conditioning system electronic control unit.
  • Electronic air conditioning control became an available option for couples and convertibles in 1987. In 1986, it was only made available for the coupe.

Twin Remote Heated Mirrors (convertible) (DL8)

  • Driver and passenger side heated rear view mirrors.
  • This option was only available for Corvette convertibles.
  • The heated mirrors were included with the heated rear window in the Z6A defogger option for coupes.

Illuminated Driver Vanity Mirror (D74)

  • The driver side sun visor included a lighted vanity mirror.
  • It was only made available for the drivers side visor in 1987.

Two Tone Paint (coupe) (D84)

  • Optional two-tone paint scheme (available on coupes only.)
  • Options included Silver/Grey, Light Blue/Medium Blue, and Light Bronze/Dark Bronze.

Delco-Belstein Shock Absorbers (FG3)

  • Gas shock absorbers with valving revised for improved ride.
  • The FG3 option offered the Z51’s upgraded shocks without buying the full Z51 suspension package.
  • A joint venture between AC-Delco and premium shock manufacturer Bilstein, these stiffer shocks offered a firmer ride and improved handling characteristics.

Performance Axle Ratio (G92)

  • Optional performance axle ratio of 3.07:1.
  • Was only offered when the Corvette was ordered with an automatic transmission.
  • The actual “Performance Axle Ratio” varied from year to year. The G92 Option was available when ordering either the Corvette or the Camaro throughout the 1980’s and early ’90’s.

Engine Oil Cooler (KC4)

  • Internal cooler used to cool internal components of the automobile’s internal combustion engine.

Cruise Control (K34)

  • Automatic electric cruise control with “resume” and “accelerate” options.

4-Speed Manual Transmission (MM4)

  • Optional manual transmission that was offered as a zero dollar upgrade.
  • A “4+3”, 4 speed manual transmission that was originally developed and built by Doug Nash Company.
  • The “4+3” transmission had overdrives in the top three gears for improved fuel economy.
  • In 1987, the 4+3 Manual Transmission came with a new, heavy duty 8.5 inch ring differential.
  • The manual transmission overdrive selector button was moved from the console to the shift knob itself.
  • Rear axle gear ratios for manual transmission models was 3.07:1.

California Emission Requirements (NN5)

  • Revised emission/exhaust components to meet California Emission standards

Radio Delete (UL5)

  • Optional removal of any stereo components from the Corvette.

AM-FM Stereo Cassette (UM6)

  • Electronically tuned stereo radio with cassette.

Stereo System, Delco-Bose (UU8)

  • Delco Bose AM/FM stereo radio with cassette.

Heavy-Duty Radiator (V01)

  • Optional, three (3) core aluminum radiator.
  • Includes larger diameter transmission cooler.

Performance Handling Package (coupe) (Z51)

  • Heavy Duty Steering and Suspension Upgrade for improved handling.
  • Included heavy-duty front and rear springs, shock absorbers, stabilizer bars and bushings, fast steering ratio, engine oil cooler, extra radiator fan (pusher), P255 / 50VR16 tires and directional alloy wheels (16 x 8.5 (front) and 16 x 9.5 (rear)).
  • The package was also refined in 1987 to include convertible-derived structural enhancements forward of the dash, and a finned power steering fluid cooler. It was restricted to manual-transmission coupes.

Sport Handling Package (Z52)

  • Combination of the Z51 Handling Package with the softer suspension of base models.
  • This option included the radiator boost fan, Bilstein shock absorbers, engine oil cooler, heavy-duty radiator, 16×9.5-inch wheels, faster 13:1 steering ratio, larger front stabilizer bar (except early production units), and the convertible-inspired structural improvements for coupes.
  • This option was available for both convertibles and coupes, equipped with either the automatic or manual transmission.

Rear Window + Side Mirror Defoggers (coupe) (Z6A)

  • Components equipped with heating elements (wire) for defogging.
  • The C4 Corvette used vertically run wire through it’s rear window to achieve proper and timely defogging.
  • For the 1987 model year, this option included heated driver and passenger side rear view mirrors, an option that is available separately for convertibles under option code C2L.

Notes

Chevrolet planned an RPO UJ6 low tire pressure indicator option, but the $325 option was on constraint during 1987 due to false signalling problems (the signal from one car could set off the alarm of another in close proximity). However, records show forty-six units installed on 1987 Corvettes. The option returned for the 1989 model year.

1987 Corvette

1987 Corvette Recalls

Recall 06e043000

Make: Chevrolet
Model: Corvette
Model Year: 1987
Manufacturer: Honeywell International, Inc.
Mfr’s Report Date: May 19, 2006
Nhtsa Campaign Id Number: 06e043000 N/a
Nhtsa Action Number: N/a
Component: Fuel System, Gasoline
Potential Number Of Units Affected: 88303

Summary

Certain Replacement Fuel Filters, Fram Brand Name P/n G3727, With Date Codes X52911 Through X60801 Sequentially Or X600141 And A Mexico Country Or Origin Marking On The Fuel Filter Housing Manufactured From October 18, 2005, Through March 21, 2006, Sold For Use On The Vehicles Listed Above And On Certain School Buses. (To See The School Bus Engine Sizes, Click On “Document Search” And Then “Bus Applications”). The Connector On The Fuel Filter Was Not Manufactured To Honeywell’s Specification. As A Result, The O-ring May Not Seat Correctly On The Fuel Line.

Consequence

This Condition May Cause An Inadequate Seal At The Connection, Potentially Leading To A Fuel Leak. In The Presence Of An Ignition Source, A Fire Could Occur.

Remedy

Honeywell Will Notify Owners And Replace The Fuel Filters Free Of Charge. The Recall Began On October 18, 2006. Owners May Contact Fram Customer Service At 1-800-890-2075 (Option 1).

Notes

This Recall Only Pertains To Aftermarket Fram Fuel Filters And Has No Relation To Any Original Equipment Installed On The Vehicles Listed. Customers May Contact The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline At 1-888-327-4236 (Tty: 1-800-424-9153); Or Go To http://www.safercar.gov.

Recall 07e088000

Make: Chevrolet
Model: Corvette
Model Year: 1987
Manufacturer: Honeywell International, Inc.
Mfr’s Report Date: Oct 19, 2007
Nhtsa Campaign Id Number: 07e088000
Nhtsa Action Number: N/a
Component: Equipment
Potential Number Of Units Affected: 121680

Summary

Certain Honeywell Fram Racing Brand Hp4 And Hp8 Oil Filters That Were Manufactured From May 25, 2006, Through September 14, 2007, And Sold For Use As Replacement Equipment For Vehicles List Above. The Affected Filters Are Marked With A Date Code A61451 Through A72571 Sequentially. The Date Code And Part Number Appear On The Filter Housing. Fram Racing Hp4 And Hp8 Oil Filters Not Bearing A Date Code In This Range Are Not Affected By This Recall. The Gasket Of The Oil Filter Becomes More Pliable Under High Temperatures And Pressures.

Consequence

This Condition May Cause Inadequate Sealing And Loss Of Engine Oil, Possibly Resulting In A Fire.

Remedy

Honeywell Will Replace The Affected Oil Filters Free Of Charge. The Recall Began During November 2007. Owners Can Contact Fram Customer Service Toll-free At 1-800-890-2075.

Notes

Customers May Contact The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline At 1-888-327-4236 (Tty: 1-800-424-9153); Or Go To http://www.safercar.gov.

Recall 91v143000 Ea90033

Make: Chevrolet
Model: Corvette
Model Year: 1986
Manufacturer: General Motors Corp.
Mfr’s Report Date: Aug 26, 1991
Nhtsa Campaign Id Number: 91v143000 Ea90033
Nhtsa Action Number: Ea90033
Component: Seat Belts:front:anchorage
Potential Number Of Units Affected: 231833

Summary

Under Certain Vehicle Operations And Occupant Usage Conditions, The Safety Belts Can Lockup Or Jam In The Safety Belt Retractor.

Consequence

If Lockup Occurs, It Is Impossible To Pull Belt Out Of the Retractor. The Occupant Of A Seat With An Unusable Safety Belt Is subject To Increased Risk Of Injury Or Death In The Event Of A Sudden Stop Or accident.

Remedy

Replace The Safety Belts If The Lockup Occurs.

Notes

System: Safety Belts.vehicle Description: Passenger Cars.


1987 Corvette Service Bulletins

Service Bulletin 01697

Make: Chevrolet
Model: Corvette
Model Year: 1987
Manufacturer: General Motors Corp.
Service Bulletin Number: 01697
Date of Bulletin: Jan 01, 2004
NHTSA Item Number: 10006297

Component

Equipment: Electrical

Summary

No serial data communications using the tech 1 with a 1986 or newer Camaro, Firebird or Corvette with a 5.0 or 5.7 litre engine. Sit bulletin 1450640.

Service Bulletin 9313110

Make: Chevrolet
Model: Corvette
Model Year: 1987
Manufacturer: General Motors Corp.
Service Bulletin Number: 9313110
Date of Bulletin: Mar 01, 1993
NHTSA Item Number: 39547

Component

Visibility: Glass, Side/Rear

Summary

Rear lift window hard to open/hinge loose to glass.


1987 Corvette Common Issues

The following list of common issues is intended for individual reference only, and may not reflect the specific issues of every 1987 Corvette. This information comes from a variety of sources including the NHTSA Defects Reports pages. While the intent of this page is to identify the common issues pertaining to the 1987 Corvette, it is not an all-inclusive list and should be used for reference only.

Mechanical Issues

Engine

Engine is known to seize when water enters the engine air intake system. The air cleaner (located directly in the nose of the engine) allows water to flow into the cylinder chamber which causes engine lock up. Water can be pulled into the air intake system by the movement of air from the radiator fan when it is collected on the front air spoiler.

Engine stalls, surges and runs rough as the direct result of malfunctioning computer control module.

Engine tends to rev/accelerate uncontrollably during certain driving conditions, especially when the car has entered a turn/turning condition.

Engine Cooling System

Low coolant light regularly fails on the 1987 Corvette.

Fuel Pump

The factory installed fuel pump has been known to fail prematurely, although GM designed a more reliable replacement fuel pump to resolve this issue.

Suspension

The front fiberglass leaf springs are known to crack as the direct result of normal deterioration.

Braking System

There have been multiple reports of the 1987 Corvette’s brakes locking when the car enters into a turn. Similarly, there are have been reports of the Corvette accelerating uncontrollably through turns without responsiveness from the brakes.

Electrical Issues

Electronic Control Unit

Internal VATS (Vehicle Anti-Theft System) key-read issue prevents car from starting, even after multiple attempts, rendering the Corvette useless for as much as 15 minutes between attempts. Usually requires replacement of the ignition switch module.
The computer has intermittent difficulty reading VATS key during normal vehicle operation which can cause the Corvette to stall and remain inoperable for several minutes.

Exterior Issues

Headlights

Headlight motors are known to fail, preventing headlights from engaging/disengaging.

Fiberglass Body & Seals

There are a number of fiberglass body panel components that are known to fail. These include faulty hood seals, leaky roof seals and deteriorating firewalls.

Doors & Door Hinges

Both the driver and passenger doors are known to exhibit erratic vibration.

Interior Issues

Dashboard

The dashboard is known to flicker intermittently. If the flickering becomes consistent/regular, it could be an indicator of a bad ground, weak battery or alternator. It could also be an early indication that the dashboard is beginning to fail.

Sat Belts

Seat belts have been known to inadequately secure passengers during quick stopping procedures. They tend to be difficult to buckle and there are a number of reports indicating that their ability to properly restrain an individual is inadequate.
Seat belts are known to lockup or jam as the best retracted to its recoiled position. In the event of a jam, the seat belt would not free itself, increasing the likelihood of injury. There were so many instances of this issue reported that GM issued a formal recall to replace the seat belts.

1987 Callaway

1987 Corvette Maintenance Schedule

Maintenance Schedule

Schedule 1

Follow Schedule 1 if your car is mainly operated under one or more of the following conditions:.

  • When most trips are less than 4 miles (6 kilometers)
  • When most trips are less than 10 miles (16 kilometers) and outside temperatures remain below freezing.
  • Idling for extended periods and/or low-speed operation such as found in delivery, police, rental or taxi operation.
  • Towing a trailer.
  • Operating in dusty areas.
1986 Corvette Maintenance Schedule
1987 Corvette Maintenance Schedule

Schedule 2

Follow Schedule 2 only if none of the driving conditions specified in Schedule 1 apply

1986 Corvette Maintenance Schedule
1987 Corvette Maintenance Schedule

Additional Maintenance and Lubrication

While Operating Your Vehicle

Automatic Transmission Shift Indicator Position – Make sure the indicator points to the gear chosen.

Horn Operation – Blow the horn occasionally to make sure it works.  Check all button locations.

Brake System Operation – Be alert to abnormal sounds, increased brake pedal travel or repeated pulling to one side when braking.  Also, if a brake warning light comes on or flashes, or the anti-lock (if equipped) comes on or remains on, something may be wrong with part of the braking system.  Have it inspected and repaired at once.

Exhaust System Operation – Be alert to any changes in the sound of the system or any smell of fumes.  These are signs the system may be leaking or overheating.  Have it inspected and repaired at once.  Also see “Engine Exhaust Gas Caution (Carbon Monoxide)” and “Catalytic Converter” in your Owner’s Manual.

Tire and Wheel Operation – Be alert to a vibration of the steering wheel or seat at normal highway speeds.  This may mean a wheel balance is needed.  Also, a pull right or left on a straight, level road may show the need for a tire pressure adjustment or wheel alignment.

Steering System Operation – Be alert to changes in steering action.  An inspection is needed when the steering wheel is harder to turn or has too much free play or if unusual sounds are noted when turning or parking.

Headlight Aim Operation – Take note of light pattern occasionally.  If beam aim doesn’t look right, headlights should be aligned.

At Each Fuel Fill:

Engine Oil Level Check – Check engine oil level and add if necessary.  See your Owner’s Manual for further details. NOTE:  A large loss of oil in this system may indicate a problem.  Have it inspected and repaired at once.

Engine Coolant Level and Condition –  Check engine coolant level in coolant reservoir tank and add if necessary.  Replace if dirty or rusty.  See your Owner’s Manual for further details.  NOTE: A large loss in this system may indicate a problem.  Have it inspected and repaired at once.

Windshield Washer Fluid Level Check – Check washer fluid level in container and add if necessary.

At Least Monthly:

Tire Pressure Check – Keep pressures as shown on Tire Placard on the driver’s door (include spare unless it is a stowaway).  Pressure should be checked when tires are “cold”.

Light Operation Check – Check operation of license plate light, side-marker lights, headlights including high beams, parking lights, taillights, brake lights, turn signals, backup lights, instrument panel and interior lights and hazard warning flashers.

Fluid Leak Check – After the car has been parked for a while, inspect the surface beneath the car for water, oil, fuel or other fluids.  Water dripping from the air conditioning system after use is normal.  If you notice fuel leaks or fumes, the cause should be found and corrected at once.

At Least Twice A Year (for example: Every Spring and Fall):

Power Steering Pump Fluid Level Check – Check power steering pump fluid level in accordance with Owner’s Manual instructions and keep at proper level.  NOTE: A large loss in this system may indicate a problem.  Have it inspected and repaired at once.

Brake Master Cylinder Reservoir Fluid Level Check – Check fluid and keep at proper level.  NOTE: A low fluid level can indicate worn disc brake pads which may need to be serviced.  NOTE: A large loss in this system may indicate a problem.  Have it inspected and repaired at once.

Clutch System Service – Manual Transmissions – For cars equipped with hydraulic clutch systems, check the reservoir fluid level and add fluid as required.  All others, check clutch pedal free travel and adjust as necessary.  See your Owner’s Manual for further detail.  NOTE:  A large loss in this system may indicate a problem.  Have it inspected and repaired at once.

Each Time Oil Is Changed:

Automatic and Manual Transmission/Transaxle Fluid Level Check – Check transmission/transaxle fluid level and add as required.  If equipped with manual transmission – check fluid in the overdrive unit and add as required.  NOTE: A large loss in this system may indicate a problem.  Have it inspected and repaired at once.

Tire and Wheel Inspection and Rotation – Check tires for abnormal wear or damage.  Also, check for damaged wheels.  To equalize tire wear and obtain maximum tire life, it is suggested that tires be rotated at 7,500 miles (12,500 kilometers) followed by 15,000 miles (25,000 kilometers) thereafter.  See “Tires” in owners manual for further information.

Brake Systems Inspection – For convenience, the following should be done when wheels are removed for rotation: Inspect lines and hoses for proper hookup, binding, leaks, cracks, chafing, etc.  Inspect disc brake pads for wear and rotors for surface condition.  Also inspect drum brake linings for wear and cracks (if applicable).  Inspect other brake parts, including drums, wheel cylinders, parking brake, etc. at the same time.  Check parking brake adjustment. INSPECT BRAKES MORE OFTEN IF DRIVING HABITS OR CONDITIONS RESULT IN FREQUENT BRAKING.

Steering, Suspension and Front Drive Axle Boot and Seal Inspection – Inspect front and rear suspension and steering system for damaged, loose or missing parts, signs of wear or lack of lubrication.  Inspect power steering lines and hoses for proper hookup, binding, leaks, cracks, chafing, etc.  (On cars equipped with manual steering gear, check for seal leakage.)  Replace seals if necessary.

Exhaust System Inspection – Inspect complete system.  Inspect boy near the exhaust system.  Look for broken, damaged, missing or out-of-position parts as well as open seams, holes, loose connections or other conditions which could cause a heat build up in the floor pan or could let exhaust fumes seep into the trunk or passenger compartment.

Throttle Linkage Inspection – Inspect for interference, binding , damaged or missing parts.

Engine Drive Belts Inspection – Inspect all belts for cracks, fraying and wear.  Adjust or replace as needed.

Rear Axle Service – Check gear lubricant level and add if needed.  Cars equipped with limited-slip differential should have gear lubricant and any required additives drained and refilled at 7,500 miles (12,500 kilometers).  See your Owner’s Manual.  IF YOU USE YOUR CAR TO PULL A TRAILER, CHANGE GEAR LUBRICANT EVERY 7,500 MILES (12,500 KILOMETERS).  NOTE: A large loss in this system may indicate a problem.  Have it inspected and repaired at once.

Power Antenna – Clean and then lubricate power antenna mast.  The proper lubricant should be used.

At Least Once A Year:

Lap and Shoulder Belts Condition and Operation – Inspect belt system, including webbing, buckles, latch plates, retractors, guide loops and anchors.

Seatback Latch and Recliner Operation – Be sure seatbacks latch using mechanical latches.  Make sure the recliner is holding by pushing and pulling on the top of the seatback while it is reclined.  See your Owner’s Manual for seat operating information.

Spare Tire and Jack Storage – Be alert to rattles in rear of car.  Make sure the spare tire, all jacking equipment, any tire inflator and any covers or doors are securely stowed at all times.  Oil jack ratchet or screw mechanism after each use.

Key Lock Service – Lubricate key lock cylinder at least annually.

Body Lubrication Service – Lubricate all body door hinges including the tailgate (if equipped).  Also lubricate the body hood, fuel door and rear compartment hinges and latches including interior glove box and counsel doors, and any folding seat hardware.

Starter Safety Switch Operation – CAUTION: Before performing the following safety switch check, be sure to have enough room around the car.  Then, firmly apply both the parking brake (see your Owner’s Manual for procedure) and the regular brakes.  Do not use the accelerator pedal.  If the engine starts, be ready to turn off the ignition promptly.  Take these precautions because the car could possibly move without warning and possibly cause personal injury or property damage.  On automatic transmission cars, try to start the engine in each gear.  The starter should crank only in “Park” or “Neutral”.  On manual transmission cars, place the shift lever in “Neutral”, push the clutch halfway and try to start.  The starter should crank only when the clutch is fully depressed.

Steering Column Lock Operation – While parked, try to turn key to “Lock” in each gear range.  The key should turn to “Lock” only when gear is in “Park” on automatic or “Reverse” on manual transmissions.  On cars with key release lever, try to turn key to “Lock” without depressing the lever.  The key should turn to “Lock” only with the key lever depressed.  On all vehicles, the key should come out only in “Lock”.

Parking Brake an Transmission “Park” Mechanism Operation – CAUTION: Before checking the holding ability of the parking brake and automatic transmission “Park” mechanism, park on a fairly steep hill with enough room for movement in the downhill direction.  To reduce the risk of personal injury or property damage, be prepared to apply the regular brakes promptly if the car begins to move. To check the parking brake, with the engine running and the transmission in “Neutral”, slowly remove foot pressure from the regular brake pedal (until the car is only held by the parking brake.)  To check the automatic transmission “Park” mechanism holding ability, release all brakes after shifting the transmission to “Park”.

Underbody Flushing – At least every spring, flush from the underbody with plain water any corrosive materials used for ice and snow removal and dust control.  Take care to thoroughly clean any areas where mud and other debris can collect.  Sediment packed in closed areas of the vehicle should be loosened before being flushed.

Engine Cooling System Service – Inspect coolant and freeze protection.  If dirty or rusty, drain, flush and refill with new coolant.  Keep coolant at the proper mixture as specified in your Owner’s Manual.  This provides proper freeze protection, corrosion inhibitor level and engine operating temperature.  Inspect hoses and replace if cracked, swollen or deteriorated.  Tighten hose clamps.  Clean outside of radiator and air conditioning condenser.  Wash radiator filler can and neck.  To help ensure proper operation, a pressure test of both the cooling system and cap is also recommended.

1987 Callaway

1987 Corvette DIY Service Guide

Battery & Charging

Inspection & Replacement of Battery, Factory Battery Specifications, Replacement of Alternator/Generator

Belt & Tensioner

How to Replace Drive Belt(s), Inspection & Replacement of Upper/Lower Radiator Hoses

Braking

Inspection & Replacement of Brake Pads, Inspection & Replacement of Front/Rear Brake Rotors, How to Replace Brake Calipers, How to Bleed Brakes, Inspection & Replacement of Master Cylinder

Heating & Cooling

Inspection & Replacement of Radiator, How to Replace the Heater Core, Inspection & Replacement of Upper/Lower Radiator Hoses, How to Flush the Cooling System, How to Replace the Water Pump, How to Replace a Thermostat

Emissions

Location of, Inspection & Replacement of Oxygen Sensors (Upstream/Downstream), How to Replace the EGR Valve, How to Replace the Smog Pump

Filters/PCV Valves

Location & Replacement of the Following Filters: Oil Filter, Fuel Filter, Transmission Filter, PCV Valve

Ignition & Tune Up

How to Replace the Ignition Coil, How to Replace the Ignition Switch, Inspection & Replacement of Sparkplug Wires, Inspection & Replacement of Cap & Rotor, How to Replace Sparkplugs, Engine Firing Order, Engine Timing

Relays & Sensors

Location & Replacement of: Mass Air Flow Sensor, Oil Pressure Sensor, Engine Temperature Sensor, Ambient Air Temperature Sensor, Fuel Pressure Sensor, Oxygen Sensors (Upstream/Downstream)

Suspension & Steering

Inspection & Replacement of Upper/Lower Ball Joints, How to Replace Control Arm Bushings, How to Replace the Power Steering Pump, Inspection & Replacement of Front Shocks/Struts, Inspection & Replacement of Rear Shocks/Struts, How to Replace Inner & Outer Tie Rod Ends

Starter/External Engine

How to Replace the Starter Motor, How to Replace the Starter Solenoid, How to Replace the Drive Belt Tensioner, How to Replace the Idler Pulley, Location of, Inspection & Replacement of Engine (Motor) Mounts, How to Replace the Oil Pan Gasket, How to Replace the Oil Pump

Transmission & Clutches

How to Change the Transmission Filter (Automatic Transmission), How to Replace a Clutch (Manual Transmission)

1987 Corvette Dealers Sales Brochure

1987 Corvette Dealers Sales Brochure

Download this 1987 Corvette Dealers Sales Brochure for a quick look at the features of the car.

Download 1987 Corvette Dealers Sales Brochure

Source Material:

  1. The Pocket Book of the Corvette: The Definitive Guide to the All American Sports Car – Copyright 2003, Barnes & Noble
  2. CORVETTE: Sports Car Superstar – Copyright 2005, PIL – Publications International, Ltd.
  3. Corvette Black Book – Copyright 2009, Michael Bruce Associates, Inc.
  4. The Complete Book of Corvette, Every Model Since 1953 – Copyright 2005, Mike Mueller – MBI Publishing

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