A Rare Pair: The First And Last Corvette L88 Hammer For Millions
What makes the L88 so special, and just how many millions did this duo rake in at Mecum?
The first and last Corvette L88
This is the last installment of our special series on the Mecum Kissimmee 2024 auction, where 527 Corvettes were offered, with an astounding 72% meeting the reserve and hammering off to a new home. If you’d like to revisit any of the special Corvette sales from this spectacular 2024 auction, the complete CorvSport Mecum Kissimmee series is listed below.
This year’s Mecum auction in rural Kissimmee offered many unique Corvettes, but none were more rare than this first (1967) and last (1969) L88 duo, offered together as one lot. A few teasers, before we get to the final hammer price. The duo was the top dog of the 527 Corvettes, and its first-place finish was $1,650,000 higher than the second-place ‘Vette. And if that accomplishment wasn’t enough, this duo also placed a mind-boggling 8th overall among the 4,383 vehicles at Mecum this year–which coincidentally was the most vehicles ever offered at a collector car auction!
“The L88 was a special option package developed under the direction of Zora Arkus-Duntov, director of GM’s performance division. First introduced in 1967, the L88 Corvette featured a highly modified version of Chevy’s 427-cubic-inch V-8 engine. Although this engine received a factory horsepower rating of 435, actual engine output was somewhere between 540 and 580 horsepower, giving the “stock” L88 enough power to run a quarter-mile in the high-11-second range!
The L88 is the “cream of the crop” for serious car collectors around the world. Between 1967 and 1969, a total of just 216 units were produced – 20 in 1967, 80 in 1968 and 116 in 1969. Their limited availability only adds to their exclusivity, as does the incredible story behind these amazing machines.”
A Comparison of the Two
♦ The First:
Finished in Tuxedo Black, the 1967 Convertible stands as the first production Corvette L88. It was campaigned by Tony DeLorenzo and Jerry Thompson in 1967 and secured a 2nd place finish in the Daytona Beach SCCA Runoffs. It comes with the Protect-O-Plate, 1968 title, a testimony letter from Tony DeLorenzo, and Al Grenning CCAS affirmation. The car has earned esteemed accolades in the Corvette community, including Bloomington Gold certification, multiple NCRS Top Flight victories, MCACN Triple Diamond, and the 2013 NCRS Heritage award.
♦ The Last:
This 1969 Coupe has been recognized as the last documented Corvette L88 ever made. Documented details include the original tank sticker, ownership history, NCRS certificate and judging sheet, and a title search tracing back to the initial owner. L88 specialist Jim Thorpe conducted an extensive body-off restoration, preserving the original 427/430 HP V-8 with aluminum heads and intake manifold. Adorned in the coveted factory color combination of Fathom Green with Saddle leather interior, it earned the NCRS Top Flight award in 2013.
What was the final hammer price?
Yikes! $2,585,000! Did anyone see that coming?
For more pictures and info on this phenomenal duo, click here. I’d love to know what you think of this multi-million-dollar hammer price. We have the fastest-growing Corvette community on our Facebook page, with over 170,000 followers (51,000 since January 2023!). Come join other hardcore enthusiasts and say hello, Douglas B.