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problems with '80-'81 Corvettes



Hello, I have always liked '80-'81 Corvettes. I hope to purchase one in the near future but I need some advice. My knowledge is very limited on these cars. What I know I have gotten from the Net and books. My question; is there any thing to look for when buying these years?
For example, certain areas that are prone to rust; areas that leak; or any design flaws?
Thanks for your input.
The 80's and 81's are basically the same car, except the engine computer on the 81 and the electronic carburator. The other differance is that all 80's were made where they made Corvettes and some of the 81's were made somewhere in Kentucky:J HEHEHE, Just kiddin' guys. As far as being prone to rust, like any C-2 or C-3, check the frame behind the doors just in front of the rear tires, if there is rust here this is a fairly easy fix, however rust here is a good indicator that rust may be in other places. Now, as far as leaks..........let me see.........The side windows, the windshield .........oh..and the T-tops...The back window rarley ever leaks:cool ................I personnal preferance is the 80, I am looking at it from a maintenace stand point though and I had an 80 for 9 years........Boy, I sure miss that ole gal........Steve

Welcome to the forum!

Here's a couple good site for you to check, both have loads of Tech articles and other info that will be of help. There's even a few links on how to buy an older Vette. I couldn't even begin to tell you everything here. Both years are good, and both have their own bad points depending on how you look at it. This site (Corvette Action Center) is also a great resource for getting solutions to problems, there's plenty of talented people here who have busted knuckles from fixing their cars.


Here's some things to think about too;

Are you going to keep it stock, or modify it?
Do you have smog-nazis where you live?
Will this be a daily driver?
Are you mechanically inclined, or will you have to pay to have work done?
Do you have to have a "matching numbers" car?

Also, get a copy of the "Corvette Black Book" at your local bookstore, it will give you the specifics of each year Corvette...great book!

Oh ya, and what Steve said! Just keep in mind you are buying a car that is 20 years old....it will need repairs eventually. Get the car on a lift if possible too, inspect everything! Contact the local Vette club and see if someone will go with you to inspect a car you might like.
Thanks guys for the welcome to the Forum. Thanks also for the information. To answer a few questions about the '80-'81 Corvette that I hope to purchase; I don't have to have a "matching numbers" car. That is not very important to me. I need my Corvette to be a daily driver, so it needs to be reasonably reliable. I understand that this will be a 20year old car and as such will need restoring/upgrading. I look foward to this, as my cars have always been my hobby and I enjoy working on them/keeping them detailed. I have a reasonable knowledge of autos. I have worked on all my cars in the past and I can do most mechanical repairs except transmission or body work. I own a '98 Pontiac Firebird that I bought new. I really enjoy it but I have always wanted a Corvette. Again thanks for the information and I hope to talk to you again soon.

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