1998 Chevrolet Corvette Indy Pace Car
5K-Mile 6-Speed Convertible
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1998 Chevrolet Corvette C5 Convertible Indy 500 Pace Car Edition
“It's hard to say if this is the best Corvette pace car or just the best Corvette of all time.”
Here at Garage Kept Motors, we often try to imagine who'll be stepping forward to inquire about a particular car. In the case of this striking 1998 Corvette C5 Indy 500 Pace Car Edition, we've got a pretty good idea who's out there absorbing every detail presented here, and in the 158 photos and the video available on our website, GarageKeptMotors. This serious new-owner candidate will almost certainly be a Corvette aficionado, someone already well aware of how truly unique this offering is. One of only 1,158 built for the U.S. domestic market at GM's longtime Corvette-exclusive factory in Bowling Green, Kentucky to commemorate the 11thtime the Corvette merited the prized Indy pace car status, this particular car has the added distinction of being equipped with the only extra-cost option offered at the time, a six-speed manual transmission.
Our likely next owner is also probably well schooled in the details. For example, he or she will already know that, while many folks would call its paint color “purple,” Chevrolet called it “Radar Blue.” The rest of the graphics and model-specific color details—bright-yellow 5-spoke alloy wheels shod in Good Year Eagle F1 EMT high-performance rubber, yellow-and-black leather upholstery, “Corvette” trademark sunscreen graphic and hood stripes, and eye-catching checkered flag image beginning beneath the “82ndIndianapolis 500 Official Pace Car-May 24, 1998” door-graphic, and running from there to nearly the end of the car—are plenty obvious that even the casual shopper won't miss them.
Here are some of this sports car's other standout features for the sake of that casual shopper: The car is identical to the one that actually paced the 500 race with just two exceptions: It has neither the strobe safety lights or the roll bar mandated for track duties. Power originated from a 345-horsepower, 5.7 liter LS1 V8 engine. On-street or track performance was enhanced with Chevrolet's active-handling package. The system monitored steering inputs and the lateral g-force being exerted, and activated any of the four brakes to stabilize the car in sharp maneuvers, helping to control under-steer and over-steer. Inside, the pace car package included options like an upgraded Delco radio with a CD player and featuring speed-sensitive volume control, a digital clock, an anti-theft system, and Bose speakers. Leather sport seats were adjusted electronically and had memory functions, and dual-zone heating and air-conditioning controls were also included. Originally, the Z4Z pace car option package cost $5,039.
With only 5,636 miles since new and just two prior owners, both in Michigan and both of whom treated the car with the respect it deserves, this Corvette C5 fully qualifies for the often over-used term “collector quality.” Beyond an early replacement of a computer module under warranty, the only other non-original feature we're aware of is a battery replacement.
One thing's almost for sure about the person who'll be taking this special C5 Corvette home: They aren't going to wait for another one this nice to come along. After all, that's a good way to grow old and never acquire perhaps “the best Corvette of all times” in such sparkling condition.
Be sure to check out all the photos and video on our main website: Garage Kept Motors. Call if interested or e-mail with any questions. Thank you for looking.