Home » This One-of-a-Kind C1 Corvette Could Fetch Up to $2 Million at Auction Next Month

This One-of-a-Kind C1 Corvette Could Fetch Up to $2 Million at Auction Next Month

by multimill
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The opportunity to acquire an early Chevrolet Corvette like no other is coming up next month.

Gooding & Company is set to auction off a one-of-a-kind C1 “proposal car” at its annual Pebble Beach sale during Monterey Car Week. The gorgeous convertible is a design concept for a mid-generation design refresh that GM chose not to move forward with.

The origins of this prototype, which is known by its S.O. 2151 serial number, date back to early 1953, before the ‘Vette had even gone into production. It’s one of 15 cars with a single-piece fiberglass body that were built for testing or display at GM Motorama. This example debuted in early 1954 as a pale-yellow hard-top, after which it was retired and sent to GM’s storied Art and Colour department for use as a proposal car.

The 1954 Chevrolet Corvette S.0. 2151 prototype from the side

1954 Chevrolet Corvette S.O. 2151 prototype

Gooding & Company

Under the supervision of legendary designer Harley Earl, the car would end up being used as a design prototype for the 1955 Corvette, which was due to get a makeover to go with its new, optional V-8. The vehicle’s body features several stylistic changes, including a new egg-crate front grille, a decorative hood scoop, slanted front-fender vents, bumper-exit exhaust tips, and a trunk like that found on the fastback Corvair. The convertible, which is powered by an inline-six and finished in Bermuda Green, is a beauty, but as Corvette buffs know, GM executives decided to hold off for a year and then go in a more muscular direction with the 1956 model.

It’s unclear what happened to the S.O. 2151 after GM passed on it, but at some point during the 1960s it fell into private ownership with most of its unreleased cosmetic features removed. In 1975, it was purchased for $3,000 by George F. Campbell, who bought it based on the advice of Corvette historian Noland Adams. Campbell then spent the next four decades researching the prototype and collecting parts so that it could be restored to its 1954 appearance and specification. Unfortunately, Campbell passed away before this could happen, but its current owner had the car restored back to its original glory late last decade. The car has only been displayed once since then, at this year’s Amelia Concours d’Elegance, where it received the prestigious Founder Award.

Inside the 1954 Chevrolet Corvette S.0. 2151 prototype

Inside the S.O. 2151

Gooding & Company

Anyone looking to add some Corvette history to their collection will want to attend Gooding & Company’s Pebble Beach auctions, which run from August 18 to 19. Prepare to spend big, though. The auction house expects this one-off prototype to sell for between $1.5 million and $2 million.

Click here for more photos of the 1954 Chevrolet Corvette S.O. 2151 prototype.

The Chevrolet Corvette S.0. 2151 Prototype in Photos

Gooding & Company

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