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1996 RPO Spotter's Guide Questions

pgtr

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 20, 2002
Messages
324
Location
CST
Corvette
96Cpe
As I've been reading up and learning about '96s I have some questions perhaps someone can help clarify...

Where are the build options printed? Inside the console?

RPO G92 was on perhaps half the 96s produced. What was the base ratio? What was teh G92 ratio(s)? Was there any special options required to get G92?

RPO AQ9 - what exactly are 'sport seats' and how do I recognize them? All the seats I see have the asymetrical stitching and (so far) all I've seen are power. But 'sport seat' I'm not sure what they are or how to recognize them.

RPO UJ6 - Tire Pressure Warning - do these work well given 10 years of usage/age? If they are problematic can they by 'bypassed' so whatever warnings aren't constantly displayed?

RPO F45 - real time damping - same question as above - After 10 years what are the maintenance issues? I believe there's a switch on the console but if one installs conventional shocks is it effectively 'bypassed'? Also is it purely centered around shock damping (wiring, controller, sensors) or are there other suspension component changes?

RPO U1F - is the CD stereo. I think most got this option but if they didn't what was base? A cassette / stereo presumably?

RPO Z51 - the well known handling package but only perhaps 15% got it. How do I 'recognize' a Vette equipped with Z51? What are the telltale signs?

Finally,
RPO Z15 - Collector's Ed package - beyond the wheels, silver paint and badges - what is 'included' with the package?

I also sometimes see the Z15 wheels (ZR1 style but with correct offsets) on other 96s - were these popularly available through dealers/aftermarket?

Thanks!
 

Toms007

Moderator
Joined
Sep 24, 2004
Messages
6,485
Location
Southwest Kansas
Corvette
2007 Atomic Orange Coupe
I can't help you with all the questions you have but I can shed a little light on some.

The RPO codes are on the under side of my console cover, but they might be under the rear hatch compartment lid for 96.

G92 is the performance axle ratio, if I am not mistaken, the ratio depends on whether you have an A4 or M6 transmission. My 94 (A4) has G92 and then another RPO code G44 which translates to the 3.07 ratio. So if the car you are looking at has G92 it will have another code telling you what the actual ratio is.

Sport Seats, all sport seats have the asymetrical stitching like you have seen. The standard seats are very symetrical with the stitching running side to side. this is a picture of my 94's sport seats (same as 95 & 96) (12016 cars equipt in 96)
25_4.jpg


Low tire pressure warning system, I can't help too much as my car is not equipt with it. However I don't think they are usually a problem as long as the tire sensors are not damaged. Hopefully someone with more knowledge on this will jump in and help. (6865 car equipt)

F45 Real Time Damping, was available to all models (2896 cars were equipt in 96) and employed sensor and accelerometers at each wheel to measure movement. The data is sent to the PCM and it calculates the damping mode that will provide tha optimum control of the vehicle. This is actually an updated version of the FX3 package available from 1989-1995. The shocks and related hardware are expensive to replace. Regular shocks can be installed but the "Idiot Light" I think will burn, so if you do this my understanding is that you will want ti remove the light bulb from the DIC. Again someone with more knowledge here may jump in and share more info. My car has FX3 and is still working perfectly (108K on the clock), I did have to have a shock rebuilt by Bilstein as well as an Actuator rebuilt. But the system is perfect now.

The Bose stereo with CD was very popular, 17037 cars were equipt with this option I believe you are right, the standard system was with the radio/cassette.

Z51 was the performance handling package. It was available only on coupes, 1869 car were equipt with the option. It included the heavy duty high rate front and rear springs stabilzers and bushings. Those items are not easliy noticable. It also included 17 x 9.5" wheels at all four corners and 275/40 x 17 tires, which can be checked on the label on the door jamb. If the option was included with Z16 (Grand Sport, 276 of the 810 had this option) the rear wheels were 17 x 11 and 315/35 x 17 tires (but all GS coupes had 17 x 11's).

Z15 Collector edition. 5412 cars were equipt with this option. It included the 5 spoke (ZR1 style) wheels, painted silver. Black painted calipers with "Corvette" lettering, black floor mats and perforated leather sport seats with "Collector Edition) embroidered in the head rest. They had 17 x 8.5 wheels in the front with 255/45 x 17 tires and the rears were 17 x 9.5 with 285/40 x 17 tires. If the car was equipt with the Z51 option then the wheels/tires were then changed as above. Silver paint with special emblems.

The ZR1 style wheels are extremely popular and are available through the aftermarket as well as from GM. I have changed my stock "sawblades" for the ZR1 style wheels.
f148fb6e.jpg

corvetteZR1wheels002.jpg


I might add here, that much of the info I have provided came from the book "Cor-Vette specs 1984-1996" by Mike Antonick. If you are considering buying a C4 this book is a must (in my opinion). I hope this answers some of your questions. If you have others don't hesitate to post back, I'll see what I can do.
 

pgtr

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 20, 2002
Messages
324
Location
CST
Corvette
96Cpe
Great! This answers a lot. I appreciate your taking time to answer my questions.

OK then I've been seeing sport seats - this helps. Do sport seats mandate power seats? (AG1 and AG2 for ea seat) Or was a power seat separate? Eg. sports seats w or w/o power?

In case I may have confused myself a little on the wheels here's my understanding w/ respect to coupes and collector coupes w or wo z51 (not worried about GS):
Base: 17x8.5 sawblades all around
Base w/ Z51: 17x9.5 (sawblades or 5spokers?) all around (275/40s)
Collector's: 17x8.5 5spokers all around
Collector's w/ Z51 17x8 and 17x95 5spokers fr/rr

So both the sawblade and 5spoker came in 8.5 AND 9.5 widths?

Also is there a telltale sign or marking to easily differentiate 8.5 vs 9.5 wide wheels regardless of sawblade or zr1style 5 spoke?

I have had the black book for many years now but it falls a year or two short of 96. Something else I'm in the midst of doing is (downloaded) reading the 96 owner's manual - I've made it perhaps 1/3rd of the way through and it should answer some ?s too.

Thanks very much! This is exactly the info I was looking for. BTW I really like your 94! Coincidentally the white color is the one I prefer and I was curious what that color would like like w/ the 5 spoke wheels. So posting those pics was convenient. White or silver is probably what I'll keep an eye out for and with white I'd consider the added step of the exact same wheel swap.

---

A couple questions if anybody else happens to know:
What are the other 'G' codes (if any) for an 'M30' (automatic) equipped 96? And if the base ratio wasn't 3.07 what was it presuming G92 was not selected?

WEre J55 (HD Brakes) avail on 96s? All or optional?
 

Toms007

Moderator
Joined
Sep 24, 2004
Messages
6,485
Location
Southwest Kansas
Corvette
2007 Atomic Orange Coupe
Yea, you have it a bit confused.

Standard Corvette wheel size is 8.5" front 9.5" Rear, it doesn't matter whether or not it is a coupe or vert. The only difference is Z51, 9.5" all round or GS coupe 9.5" front 11" rears.

The big thing will be in determining which wheels came on it stock would be the tire size. Although you could put different size tires on the wheels, it is not recommended to put bigger than 255's on 8.5" wheels or 285's on 9.5" wheels.

Yes, it appears that the sawblades and the ZR1 style wheels came in 8.5" size.

Base ratio I beleive was 2.59 for the auto cars.

J55 became standard equipment in 1995, so all 95 and 96's came with the 13" front brakes. My 94 has the J55 brakes as they were a required option with the Z07 option package.

Thank you so much for the kind words, White was my first choice and silver a close second. But as fate would have it this 94 fit the bill and was calling my name, so it became mine.

Here's a picture of my first Corvette (33 years ago). Notice the color combo.
1964Corvette5.jpg

1964Corvetteinterior1.jpg


The Sport seats were all power assist, with the added feature of lumbar support adjustment. Standard seats could be power as well (front to rear) or manual adjustment.
 

pgtr

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 20, 2002
Messages
324
Location
CST
Corvette
96Cpe
Thanks! Everything is starting to come together.

Nice silver C2. I'm guessing that's a 64. Yep, sounds like we're both partial to whites and silvers.

After reading through the owner's manual it referenced a manual and automatic (electronic) HVAC controls and it referenced 3 different stereos (2 cassettes and one CD version). I'm guessing the manual HVAC control and the other cassette stereo are references to previous model years that were still left over in the owner's manual.

Thanks again for the input!
 

pgtr

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 20, 2002
Messages
324
Location
CST
Corvette
96Cpe
BTW - the 'Cornering Lamps' - I'm guessing those function by the turn signal operation and headlamps being turned on? Their intent being to light up the pavement to the side of the car at the front?
 

Toms007

Moderator
Joined
Sep 24, 2004
Messages
6,485
Location
Southwest Kansas
Corvette
2007 Atomic Orange Coupe
Thanks! Everything is starting to come together.

Nice silver C2. I'm guessing that's a 64. Yep, sounds like we're both partial to whites and silvers.

After reading through the owner's manual it referenced a manual and automatic (electronic) HVAC controls and it referenced 3 different stereos (2 cassettes and one CD version). I'm guessing the manual HVAC control and the other cassette stereo are references to previous model years that were still left over in the owner's manual.

Thanks again for the input!

Not quite.. There were two different HVAC controls, manual and auto. The manual controls were "sliders" the auto had buttons that you set a temp and it would start the AC or heater whichever the temp called for.

As far as the Stereo, I think there was the standard system, a Bose system and then the GOLD Bose system. The last one was the top of the line included CD. I have only seen the standard system and the Bose Gold, but me never seeing one doesn't really say all that much, as there aren't that many C4's around here (SW Kansas) and I can't say for sure if there are any 96 at all.

Cornering lamps do work that way...the back ones on mine light up with the reverse lamps. I don't know if that is the way it is supposed to be, but mine is that way.

Yup, it's a 64.....wish I still had it.
 

LannyL81

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 20, 2002
Messages
653
Location
Oro Valley, AZ USA
Corvette
81 White/Cinnabar, 96 CE LT4 sil/blk
As I've been reading up and learning about '96s I have some questions perhaps someone can help clarify...

Where are the build options printed? Inside the console?

They are on the lid that covers the jack.

RPO G92 was on perhaps half the 96s produced. What was the base ratio? What was teh G92 ratio(s)? Was there any special options required to get G92?

G92 was the performance ratio...I think that being 3.54? But not sure. I believe G44 was the base at 3.07 and GM3 was an option at 3.45

RPO AQ9 - what exactly are 'sport seats' and how do I recognize them? All the seats I see have the asymetrical stitching and (so far) all I've seen are power. But 'sport seat' I'm not sure what they are or how to recognize them.

The sport seats have the air bladders in them. Standard seats do not. The picture of the red seats are the sport seats.

RPO UJ6 - Tire Pressure Warning - do these work well given 10 years of usage/age? If they are problematic can they by 'bypassed' so whatever warnings aren't constantly displayed?

Unable to help on this one.

RPO F45 - real time damping - same question as above - After 10 years what are the maintenance issues? I believe there's a switch on the console but if one installs conventional shocks is it effectively 'bypassed'? Also is it purely centered around shock damping (wiring, controller, sensors) or are there other suspension component changes?

Yes, it is the shocks. These are a high dollar shock made by Bilstein. Each shock has three or five different valve settings. There are actuators on each shock and also sensors on each control arm that determines which valve setting to put the shock to based upon the switch setting.

RPO U1F - is the CD stereo. I think most got this option but if they didn't what was base? A cassette / stereo presumably?

Base radio was an AM/FM/Cass

RPO Z51 - the well known handling package but only perhaps 15% got it. How do I 'recognize' a Vette equipped with Z51? What are the telltale signs?

If you feel every bump in the road, then it has the Z51 springs. Quite stiff compared to the base FE1 springs. And also, I don't think a car can come with F45 and Z51. The Z51 package includes the FE3 springs and Bilstien shocks (but not the adjustable ones)

Finally,
RPO Z15 - Collector's Ed package - beyond the wheels, silver paint and badges - what is 'included' with the package?

sport seats, electronic temp control, AM/FM/Cass/CD, Grand Sport front calipers plus what you have above.


I also sometimes see the Z15 wheels (ZR1 style but with correct offsets) on other 96s - were these popularly available through dealers/aftermarket?

Yes very popular and in chrome, black chrome, polished, and 11" wide.

Thanks!


I put answers below each question.
 

pgtr

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 20, 2002
Messages
324
Location
CST
Corvette
96Cpe
G92 was the performance ratio...I think that being 3.54? But not sure. I believe G44 was the base at 3.07 and GM3 was an option at 3.45

I thought G92 was whether or not 'a' performance ratio was installed and GMx was the specific ratio? E.g. no specific ratio may have been associated with G92 just a generic note that one was installed.

Were there any build codes associated with the base wheels, 5 spoke GS style wheels or the actual GS (black) wheels?

Thanks for the info!
 

Rob

Site Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Sep 16, 2000
Messages
13,790
Location
New Hampshire
Corvette
1990 Corvette ZR-1
As I've been reading up and learning about '96s I have some questions perhaps someone can help clarify...

Where are the build options printed? Inside the console?

RPO G92 was on perhaps half the 96s produced. What was the base ratio? What was teh G92 ratio(s)? Was there any special options required to get G92?

RPO AQ9 - what exactly are 'sport seats' and how do I recognize them? All the seats I see have the asymetrical stitching and (so far) all I've seen are power. But 'sport seat' I'm not sure what they are or how to recognize them.

RPO UJ6 - Tire Pressure Warning - do these work well given 10 years of usage/age? If they are problematic can they by 'bypassed' so whatever warnings aren't constantly displayed?

RPO F45 - real time damping - same question as above - After 10 years what are the maintenance issues? I believe there's a switch on the console but if one installs conventional shocks is it effectively 'bypassed'? Also is it purely centered around shock damping (wiring, controller, sensors) or are there other suspension component changes?

RPO U1F - is the CD stereo. I think most got this option but if they didn't what was base? A cassette / stereo presumably?

RPO Z51 - the well known handling package but only perhaps 15% got it. How do I 'recognize' a Vette equipped with Z51? What are the telltale signs?

Finally,
RPO Z15 - Collector's Ed package - beyond the wheels, silver paint and badges - what is 'included' with the package?

I also sometimes see the Z15 wheels (ZR1 style but with correct offsets) on other 96s - were these popularly available through dealers/aftermarket?

Thanks!

http://corvetteactioncenter.com/specs/c4/1996/
 

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