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Hagerty Employee

Don't hate this 626-mile 1978 Corvette Pace Car simply because it's perfect

f there’s a year to feel nostalgic about the Indy 500, it’s 2020. Due to the global pandemic, no spectators were allowed and the hallowed May running date was swapped for August. Let’s cast our minds back to another Indianapolis 500, one held away from the shadow of COVID-19 and the very first event to be paced by America’s sports car. This pristine C3 Corvette Pace Car celebrates that 1978 running at the Brickyard in near time-capsule style. The car quite literally checks all of the boxes, and it’s up for grabs on Hemmings and on Craigslist as of this writing.


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I have been involved with a couple pace cars. They are one of the best looking C3 models ever built. 

The real problem with these none were perfect. Quality on these were bad. Poor panel fit, paint issues and interior trim issues. 

I had one that was less than 5 k miles and no weather that the rear spoiler would just fog up even in storage, 


 If I were building a car collection today I would seek one out as they are still easy to find with low miles and still at decent prices, 


As to Style and Bragging Rights, kudos; nothing says Disco Ball like 70's 'Vettes, and this was their King, style-wise.  While Chevy, and the rest of American Automobile Manufacturers were trying to get from the likes of the '65 Fuelie, '67 L88, and '69 LT1's to the Gen 4's, well, we had the C3PO's (C3 Pieces Of...).  I've spent too much time, energy, flesh, and blood, underneath these Aberrations of Automobilia; never liked 'em then, still don't like 'em now...


That said, they have a style and grace that is truly timeless, from the introduction of the Mako Shark II, to the Crossfire 'Injection' '82, they look like nothing else out there, Foreign or Domestic.


"Uhhh, Thank You, Thank You Very Much..."





For me, the C3's and C4's are my favorite for the Vette line up and still, a dream ride I would love to own one day. The exterior glass capsule is futuristic that it kind of reminds me of something out of the Jetsons cartoon, but unique and the 78 model C3 is in a class of its own.