The C1 1959 Corvette Restoration Project


During my countless hours of surfing the internet for information, facts and nice-to-knows I encounter many Corvette or GM originals but also some nice un-original Corvette options.  On the NCRS forum often interesting photo's are published which I've gathered on this page. 

Power Windows, Courtesy Lights, Fuel Injections, Heavy Duty Brakes and Suspension, Self De-Icing Wiper Blades, Engine Heating, Wire Wheels, Tubeless Tires, Teardrop Glass Top, Shaver, Toolset

For a complete list of all official Corvette '59 options visit the Corvette '59 Facts site.

Power Windows

Power windows were an official Corvette option, back in 1959 (RPO 426).  The picture underneath shows the control knobs instead of the usually fitted window handle.

(photo Jerry Wagner)

Courtesy Lights

the picture above also shows the light switch of the courtesy lights (RPO 108).  There is another switch mounted for the right door as well so if one of the doors is opened the courtesy light, mounted in the center console is switched on.

Fuel Injection

It was possible to get the single Carter carburetor replaced with a fuel injection unit.  The engine was then able to produce 250 or 290 HP (RPO 579 or 579D).  In the photo below the almost brand new looking injection module is shown.

(photo Jerry Wagner)

Heavy Duty Brakes and Suspension

Another original option, which was especially used in car racing, is the heavy duty brakes and suspension (RPO 684).  The ribbed brakes were producing more cooling (due to a larger surface) and mechanical strengh.  The titleered rear suspension has five leaves.

(photo Jerry Wagner)

Self De-Icing Window Wipers

This is not an original Corvette C1 option titlehough it is an official GM option.  The part number is #986882 and, as shown on the photo, its covered with a layer of rubber.  It even has the rubber tips as present on the original Corvette wipers.  These wipers are very rear so keep looking out for them...

(photo Roy Braatz)

Engine Heater

This is certainly not a Corvette original option but still very practical for non-heated winter storage.  The heater keeps your engine fluids warm which keeps it in much better condition.  The heater seems to us not much electricity (claimed < $ 10 per winter).

(photo Roy Braatz)

Wire wheels

A very cool, dealer option is the installation of wire wheels.  This gives the car a very classy look and I wonder why Corvette didn't fitted this wheel standard in those days.  Combined with a white-wall tire is look good on all C1's!  The picture underneath shows the wire wheels on the copper-colored '55 Corvette of Roy Braatz.  Very nice.

(photo Roy Braatz)

Tubeless Tires

Even back in the sixties tubeless tires did exists (I would know because I wasn't even born back then).  The were sold by B.F. Goodrich as shown in the advertisement shown underneath.  Since they were white-walled they would be very useful on our beloved Corvette's.

(thanks to Roy Braatz for this picture)

Bubble Shape Glass Top

Very cool as well is this bubble shape drop glass top fitted on the car of Roy.  Must be like driving in a open convertible but then without the rain/snow/hail pouring down into your car.  Nice for autumn/winter driving in the Netherlands !!!  I understand that reproductions of this top are being sold via for just under $ 8000 (I wish Santa knew this one).

(photo Roy Braatz)


As Corvette driver you ensure that not only your car but also the driver looks as smart as possible.  In 1955 GM ensured that our trimming wouldn't spoil the appearance with this optional shaver.

(pnoto Roy Braatz)

Toolkit Set

In 1955 GM was selling this tool kit set to ensure, if needed, all the needed tooling was available.

(photo Roy Braatz)