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New C5 Owner - Beginning of a nightmare?

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dvdvrd

Guest
I recently purchased a 1999 Convertible with the Stage 5 performance package (total mileage less than 3000). The first day I drove it, the diferential blew out, and there is some questions about the clutch. What have I gotten myself into? I've given up the reliability of a Toyota for this? Are corvettes reliable? I'm beginning to hear stories of modified corvettes being nothing but trouble. Anyone know a good corvette mechanic in the SF Bay area? - I think I'm going to need one...
 
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78SilvAnniv

Guest
Welcome dvdvrd

Welcome to CACC!
I grew up in rural Tracy, CA out towards Vernalis off hwy33, farmland. Folks still live there. I rode my horse all over that area and still miss it.

I think the majority of Vettes are reliable, however there is always the possiblity of getting a bad one...and if you have problems with one, you'll hear of others with problems, too. Keep in mind not all Vettes are rolling problems, just a few...and I'd imagine yours is still under warranty and all of its problems could be resolved with proper repairs. I don't know of any vette mechanics out that way but try the Portal here at CACC, it lists many vette related businesses.
Good luck.
Silver aka:Heidi
 
Joined
Feb 14, 2002
Messages
85
Location
Northern California
Corvette
1975 Pearl White Stingray, 4 Speed, T-Top
Try Corvette Express in Vacaville (707) 446-8595. I have had very good luck with obtaining parts, etc. from them. They do complete restorations, parts, service, etc. Talk to Joe (the owner) or Vinnie. Even though Vacaville is a little of of the "Bay Area" it is worth the drive. I am about the same distance from Vacaville as you are from SF, but just the opposite way.
 
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02 C-5

Guest
Whats a Stage Five Performance Package ? 2000 with only 3000 miles . A rear end blowing out is unlikely but with clutch troble . I say get it fixed and you should have 100,000 miles of trouble free driving . Where did you buy it ? There is a 3 year warranty on the car . Try the dealership .
Thanks ,
Joe
 
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dvdvrd

Guest
Thanks for the warm welcome! I've already used the Portal here to locate a good technician. The repair (diferential) is under warranty, but I have a feeling I'm going to be needing a new clutch soon. If anyone is interested in seeing pics of this vette, you can view it @ www.westcoastcorvette.com (it is the 99 black convertible). The stage 5 performance package is listed under performance parts (I've been told that this vette has over 500 HP). I'm just hoping that I don't have to worry about where I'm going to tow it next! Thanks
 
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vettepilot

Guest
Since the "Stage Five" performance isn't a regular production option from Chevrolet, what is included in that package for the $19,000 + I'll bet your problems are stemming from the way the car was driven those low 3000 miles. Probably a 1/4 mile at a time, what do you think? Does the car have new rear tires?
The photo of the engine doesn't show much in respect to what has been changed to get to 500 HP. On an LS1 engine, it takes more than a K&N air filter to do the job for sure. You might want to see if the dealer is going to stand behind his car...
Good Luck with this one!
vettepilot
 

danl72

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 24, 2001
Messages
678
Location
Chatsworth, CA
Corvette
2008 C6 Coupe
Welcome to CAC. If the car was motified it might not be covered under the warranty. You might want to check that out. It looks like a nice car. Vettepilot might be right in how it was driven with less than 5,000 miles on it and it already has the Stage 5 performance package. You may want to ask West Coast Corvette if they will cover your warranty since you bought the car from them. I have enjoyed my Vette to the fullest like many other Vette owners. Hopefully you will get this squared away so you can do the same. Good luck.
 

vettenuts

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 13, 2000
Messages
123
Location
Wakefield, RI
Corvette
2002 Mag Red Convertible
Clutch was somewhat problematic with the stock motor, with 500 HP I hope they did some upgrades on the clutch. Some places may be reluctant to touch a modified car under warranty. Hope things work out for you.

In 2002, they upgraded the Z06 clutch because the 01's were so marginal. I don't know that it will take the kind of power your car is producing. I would consult one of the tuners such as Rippie or Lingenfelter on the clutch issue once you find out what you have installed.

There is also a problem with the clutch engagement due to dirty fluid. When they do the rear, have them flush the hydraulic clutch system since they will be right there.
 
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dvdvrd

Guest
Two different Dealers were reluctant to do the fix under warranty, but that is no longer an issue. They are already in the process of replacing the diferential - I'll probably have to upgrade the clutch myself. I hope this one wasn't driven a 1/4 mile at a time, the tires are pretty new, but how old could they possibly be with 3k miles?? I'll know more this week - still hoping for a good Corvette experience!
 
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Patti

Guest
Best of luck to you, getting your vette fixed. Very frustrating and sad news that you had problems on the first day you drove it.
Welcome to the forum.....nice meeting you. :)

:w
Patti
 
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rcdk

Guest
Toyotas are reliable (at least partly) because they don't put out 500 hp.

If reliability is a big issue a modified car isn't a good idea -- you can't have your cake and eat it too.
 
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leonm47

Guest
Welcome to the world of Corvette ownership. I've had my 99 Coupe for 32 mos. and it's been down for 91 days. New rear end, new speedo, power window motors four times and on and on. Chevrolet is about as responsive as a corpse at a disco. Good luck
 
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dvdvrd

Guest
Why have a cake if you can't eat it! I guess I'll just have to settle for a taste here and there, huh? Well, I'll cross my fingers and see what happens over the next year or so - I bought this Corvette on March 8th, and haven't seen it since - so this is what it feels like to own a Corvette, hmmm....

Actually, I've heard back from the techs, and they said that even cars that have 1000HP shouldn't do this, so I guess it comes down to just being a faulty GM part?? Hopefully, I'll get it back before April (doesn't sound like it though). :(
 
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vettepilot

Guest
Well I've had three Vettes since 1991, and the only time I didn't have mine to drive was when I was deployed overseas. You think it sucks being home without it, try being 18,000 miles across the globe hoping that nobody else drives your Vette while your away.
and the people you are visiting are trying to kill ya....
Now THAT sucks......
vettepilot :L :L :L
 
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vettepilot

Guest
How come it's taking so long, are they waiting for parts?

In all seriousness, I hope you come out of this well, and once everything is corrected you have many happy driving years and miles with your Vette. It sucks being without your favorite car.
vettepilot
 
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dvdvrd

Guest
They keep telling me they're waiting for parts - last Friday, they told me that it has been dis-assembled, and most of the parts are in, but there is still one more part that they are waiting for. It's moving into the fourth week of being down - can't wait to get it back. With 500HP, I'm going to be tempted to get on it, but if I have to deal with this every time, it's not worth it. Plus, any work going forward will be coming out of my own pocket...

Thanks
 
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vettepilot

Guest
dvdvrd,
Can you tell us what modifications were installed to make 500 HP? The photo of the engine that was at the link you posted in the beginning of this thread looked bone stock. Just curious what was done to the engine.
vettepilot
 

fxstbi

Member
Joined
Oct 22, 2001
Messages
21
Location
Quincy, Illinois
Corvette
Black 2002, Red '81 & Green '69
Bad 'Vette?

When ever you start modifying a car you get into a give and take situation. You want more horse power you get less reliability. Take a car with stock engine and you get great reliability. I have owned two 'Vettes for over 20 years and put over a 120,000 miles on one of them and had no major problems with either of them. They were both stock cars. My '69 did have 350 hp. in stock trim. I just got my 2002 about three months ago and it is proving to be a great car. Unload the modified beast and get a stock car, if you want the extra hp. get a Z06. I think your ownership will improve and you will enjoy Corvettes a lot more. Just my 2 cents..........Pete
 
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dvdvrd

Guest
I talked with the techs last night, and I finally understand why the parts are taking so long (warranty issue). They said that they have never seen this happen before, and my vette is up on a lift in a million pieces (more info than I wanted to know). They are replacing the transmission main shaft, and possibly the whole transmission all together.

This is what they did to it to get 500HP - Package includes West Coast Corvettes' modified cylinder heads and cam package, hardened pushrods, cold air screens, Twin Flow Air Intake, throttle body by pass tube, 172° thermostat, head bolts, adjustable fuel pressure regulator, recalibrated engine control module, Max Flow Mass Air Sensor, 1030 cfm throttle body, Twin Flow exhaust system with X pipe, T-body By Pass Tube, Nology Wires, Beru Plugs, B&B Headers, Gasket Kit. Top End Performance Package, Billet Stroker Crankshaft(Keyed), Billet I Beam Connecting Rods, Forged J&E Pistons, Speed Pro Piston Rings, New Timing Chain, Clevite 77 Bearings, Balanced Rotating Assembly, Custom Performance Machine Work, Hand Assembly & Custom Stage V Computer Program. This is a turn key Package & will pass California emission tests. Dyno tested @ 480 HP/475 ft lbs torque plus aftermarket exhaust system of choice.

Thanks for the 2 cents Pete, I NOW completely understand that logic!
 

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