Corvette Glossary

Can’t figure out what that term means, or what that acronym you saw stands for? You’ve come to the right place!

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  • A-arm: A lateral suspension link resembling the letter A.
  • A/C: Air Conditioning. AC was introduced in the middle of the 1963 model with only 278 cars so equipped, making these the third most rare of ’63s (36 gallon tank cars and Z06 being fewer) and more rare than many other cars. In later years, the number grew to where AC became standard equipment. No ’53 to ’62 Corvettes had air conditioning from the factory.
  • Air: In terms of emissions equipment, this stands for Air Injection Reactor. Air is pumped by the “smog pumps” through air injection manifolds into the exhaust manifolds to complete the oxidization process of the unburned hydrocarbons in the exhaust stream. Many claim this is hogwash and is simply a case of diluting the exhaust with fresh air. That is, if the exhaust dirt is 100 parts per million (PPM), then adding a million parts of fresh air effectively makes the exhaust dirt 50 PPM, reducing the dirtiness, even though the same amount of dirt is still present.In terms of racing, this stands for the American International Racing team headed by James Garner in 1968. His team bought three new 1968 L88 Corvettes for racing and ran them in the late ’60s.
  • Anniversary Edition: Special paint and/or trim to mark the anniversary model years of 1978 (25th), 1988 (35th), 1993 (40th), and 2003 (50th).
  • Aspect Ratio: The ratio of a tire’s cross-sectional height to its width.
  • ASR: Acceleration Slip Regulation. Engine spark retard, throttle close down, and brake intervention limited wheel spin during acceleration. ASR, sometimes called traction control, was standard equipment for Corvettes starting with 1992 models.
  • Autocross: A sport where you race against the clock on a course usually marked with pylons and usually on a parking lot. Only one car at a time is one the course, unless you are in a Pro Solo where you run on mirrored courses against another driver on the second course. Speeds are generally close to what you can experience on a public road and the sport is considered very safe for both you and your car. The fastest time wins.


  • BBC: Big Block Chevy – the 366, 396, 402, 427, and 454 family of engines. See Rat Motor and Big Block Chevy.
  • Big Block Chevrolet: The 366, 396, 402, 427, and 454 Mark IV family of engines. There have been other variations in the aftermarket world and in the Chevrolet special products world of aluminum engines for Can Am and for boat racing but those are expensive and you will rarely see one. The 366 is an old truck engine from the mid ’60s and is probably equally rare today, even though many were built. See Rat Motor.
  • Billy Bob: Chevy engineers’ unofficial code name for the 1999 hardtop model, which was initially planned to be a low-content, price leader.
  • Bloomington Gold: This is one of the oldest Corvette shows in the US. When someone mentions Bloomington, they mean the Corvette show that started in Bloomington, IL at the McLean County Fairgrounds in 1973 as a club event. The show quickly grew to be the largest Corvette show in the country and became a commercial operation. In 1992, the show moved to Springfield, IL to the State Fairgrounds, where it stayed until 1997 when it moved back to Bloomington at the Interstate Center. In 2002, the show moved again to St. Charles, IL to the Pheasant Run Country Club where the cars are displayed on the golf course greens. Interestingly, both previous sites were on what was Route 66, furthering the association between Corvettes and Route 66. Bloomington Gold is held on the last weekend in June. The certifications from the show have become very important to Corvette owners interested in original or restored cars, as the awarding of a Gold or Silver certificate can greatly increase the value of the Corvette. The swap meet has traditionally been described as “if you can’t find the part there, it doesn’t exist”
  • Blueprinted: Precise finishing of an engine’s components, often by hand, to optimal size within factory specifications.
  • Body Off: Extensive restoration in which a Corvette body is completely removed from its frame.
  • Bored and Stroked: Both the cylinder bore and the crankshaft stroke have been increased to enlarge the displacement and increase power.
  • Bored/Boring: A machining process where the diameter of the cylinder (the bore) is enlarged. In American engines, overbores are typically .020″, .030″, .040″ and .060″ with .030″ and .060″ being the most common.
  • Bowling Green: Bowling Green, Kentucky, the current home of Corvette. Corvettes have been built here at the Chevrolet – Pontiac – Corvette plant since 1981. It is located right on I-65 and is easy to find. The National Corvette Museum is located basically “across the street”.
  • Brake Fade: When brakes get extremely hot, they fade and lose their effectiveness at stopping. Two means of this happening are that the material loses its ability to grip as it gets hot or that the fluid actually boils, creating air bubbles which reduces the pressure at the wheel, so lower pressure means less stopping power.
  • B-pillar: In Corvettes, the area between the door glass and rear window.


  • C1: A term used to refer to the first generation of Corvettes from 1953 – 1962.
  • C2: A term used to refer to the second generation of Corvettes from 1963 – 1967.
  • C3: A term used to refer to the third generation of Corvettes from 1968 – 1982.
  • C4: A term used to refer to the fourth generation of Corvettes from 1984 – 1996.
  • C5: A term used to refer to the fifth generation of Corvettes from 1997 – 2004.
  • C6: A term used to refer to the sixth generation of Corvettes from 2005 – present.
  • Callaway Twin Turbo: Engine conversion by Callaway Engineering, Old Lyme, Connecticut. Available from select Chevy dealers from 1987-1991.
  • Camber Rod: Often called the Strut Rod. This rod is part of the ’63 to ’82 IRS and controls the camber of the rear wheel. It is located directly below the halfshaft.
  • Camshaft: In the small block and big block Chevy engines, it is a shaft that turns at one half of the engine speed and pushes the lifters up, pushing the pushrods that push the rocker arms on top of the head, which then depress the valve stem, opening the valves to either let fuel and air in or exhaust out. When someone says they “have a cam in their car”, what they really mean is that they have installed a higher performance camshaft than what was originally installed. Almost every engine has a cam so the statement is silly, otherwise. Exceptions of course are reed valve two strokes and rotary engines, among others.
  • Can Am: A pro racing series of the mid ’60s through the early ’80s by SCCA featuring unrestricted rules until 1974. The series resumed in 1978 with a 5.0 liter engine limit. Initially, some Corvettes entered the series and many Corvette drivers made the jump into specialty built race cars like Lola, McLaren, and so on. Many used Chevrolet and Corvette engines, but rapid escalation of costs brought incredible Chevy aluminum engine development in very large displacement big blocks, such as the 430 cid, 488, and more.
  • Carlisle: The site of several auto events including a major annual Corvette show at the Carlisle, Pennsylvania fairgrounds in late August.
  • Casting Number: Usually refers to the GM part number cast into engine blocks, but can refer to cast numbers on other components.
  • Catalytic Converter: Platinum filled converters in the exhaust stream that continue combustion to finalize burning and reduce emissions. Catalytic converters first appeared on Corvettes in 1975 and mandated unleaded gasoline. Early cats were single and required the dual exhaust merge into one cat and then split back to dual mufflers.
  • cc’d/cc a head: The term “cc” refers to finding the volume of an object, such as a head. In cc’ing a head, you place the head upside down so the deck is level, use a flat piece of Plexiglas with a small hole in it, seal the Plexiglas to the deck with a thin layer of grease, and drip alcohol from a burette until the chamber is filled. The amount you place in (measured from the burette) is the volume of the head chamber (i.e., 57 cc, 64 cc, 72 cc, etc.) and you use Plexiglas to see the air bubbles to ensure the chamber is really full and to watch so that you do not spill any by overfilling. If you overfill, you have to empty and start over.
  • Classic Corvette: 1953 through 1962 model Corvettes
  • Coil Over: A type of shock that has the coil spring incorporated into the design rather than have the spring located separated. Usually a racing item, they have found their way into some exotic cars.
  • Collector Edition: Specially equipped and trimmed 1982 or 1996 models.
  • Coupe: 1963-1967 fixed-top Corvettes; also T-top 1968-1982 models, and removable-roof panel (targa) 1984 and newer models.
  • Cowl: The surface of a car between the windshield and hood, bounded on the sides by the fenders.
  • Cowl Induction: The process of obtaining air for the carburetor from the high pressure area at the base of the windshield, usually from a hood scoop that opens to the rear. The L88 hoods from ’67 to ’69 used cowl induction, as did the 302 Z/28 Camaro and some Chevelles. Later in 1973, cowl induction was again used to obtain cooler air as underhood temperatures climbed due to emission control equipment. It was discontinued and replaced with forward facing scoops which ran over the top of the radiator in 1975.
  • Crankshaft: The crankshaft is the main shaft of the engine that the pistons connect to via the rods and converts the downward force into rotating motion to propel the car forward. You will hear terms like Cast Crank, Iron Crank, Steel Crank, Forged Crank, and Billet Crank.
    • Cast Crank – the crankshaft is made from cast iron like the block. Determined by the thin, sharp casting seam the length of the crankshaft.
    • Iron Crank – same as cast crank.
    • Steel Crank – actually a forged steel crank. Crank is not cast but forged and is stronger than cast. Easily determined by the forging seam that looks like someone ground it with a grinder, where the cast seam is a thin, sharp line. However, this has been counterfeited before so buyer beware.
    • Forged Crank – A forged steel crank.
    • Billet Crank – The crankshaft is machined from a single piece of billet steel, not forged, and is much stronger than a forging.
  • Curb Weight: The road-going weight of a vehicle including fluids, but excluding occupants or cargo.
  • Cross Fire: An electronic fuel injection system used on the ’82 and ’84 Corvettes that used two Throttle Body Injectors on a cross ram manifold.


  • Date Code: Almost every mechanical part made for a Corvette has a date code either cast or stamped into it. These are used to determine if the part is correct for that Corvette, as an engine with a date code of D 16 5 (April 16, 1965) could not be correct for a ’63 Corvette as the engine was made after the car was made. Parts too early are usually not correct either, as they would have been installed on an earlier vehicle, such as a B 23 3 (Feb. 23, 1963) in a ’67 Corvette. The date code on a SBC is typically on the belhousing flange behind the distributor. On early big blocks, it was on the passenger side near the pan rail, but later (1970) moved up to the same location as the SBC.
  • Delco: Subsidiary of GM which builds many of the parts for GM cars.
  • DOHC: Dual OverHead Cam – Two cams run over the valve train of the head. The cam either opens valves directly by the use of tappets (cam followers) or a rocker arm that rides on the cam lobes. The rocker method is least common. One cam operates the exhaust valves while the other cam operates the intake valves typically. With direct opening of the valves, typically there is room to operate two valves for the intake and two for the exhaust, so you have a four valve per cylinder engine. Typically this is in a crossflow head, where intake gases enter from one side and exhaust gases exit from the other. The advantage is that you can flow more air/gas in and more exhaust out, producing more power for a given displacement than a standard pushrod OHV engine. This type of valve train can operate at higher RPM than a pushrod style valve train.
  • Dual Quad: The two 4 bbl versions of the 283 in the ’50s Corvettes. The dual quad used two Carter WCFB carbs on an aluminum intake.
  • Duntov: Zora Arkus-Duntov, legendary chief engineer, called “father” of the Corvette; also, National Corvette Restorers Society (NCRS) award combining static judging with mechanical excellence.


  • Earl, Harley: The chief designer for GM, Harley Earl was responsible for initiating the idea of a Corvette in 1952 as Project Opel.
  • Eckler’s: A Corvette supplier of fiberglass parts and now restoration parts. Having been around forever, they once were mostly noted for custom bodywork but now most of their fiberglass is for restoration work. They have a large operation in Titusville, Florida.
  • ET: Elapsed Time. The time it takes for a car to start and cross the finish line in a drag race, usually 1/8 or 1/4 mile long. Usually express with a speed, such as 14.301 @ 102 mph, which means the car took 14.301 seconds to start and then go 1/4 miles and at the finish line was going 102 mph.


  • Fiber Optics: In 1968, fiber optic light monitors provided the driver with knowledge of what lights were working via monitors on the center console. These lasted until 1971. Many were repaired wrongly, with body shops soldering the “wires” back together and wondering why they didn’t work. Often, malfunctioning fiber optics are signs of old body damage.
  • Fiberglass: A material combining thermoset plastic with glass fibers.
  • Fuelie: Nickname for Fuel Injection cars, 1957 – 1965.


  • Glass Pack: A straight through muffler that used fiberglass packing in the expansion chamber to muffle the noise some. They were louder than a stock muffler, sometimes gave better performance (poorly or cheaply built ones actually slowed exhaust flow), and were magnets for police.
  • Grand Sport: Five 1963 factory-built racers; also 1996 option package.


  • Half Shaft: The rear axle in the IRS is a mini-drive shaft with a u-joint on each end where it attaches to the differential in center and the stub axle on the outside.
  • Hardtop: Removable auxiliary hardtop available for 1956-1975 and 1989-1996 convertibles; also new fixed-roof model introduced in 1999.
  • Headers: Steel tubing exhaust manifolds designed for maximum performance usually. Chrysler designed some in the early ’60s in cast iron but Chevrolet stuck with the Ram Horn on the SBC. Common terms are: Hookers (brand), 180 degree, equal length, tuned, and tri-Y. Corvette never had headers until 1980 when a short tube exhaust manifold was fabricated and most call them shorty headers. In reality, they are more of just a tubing manifold created to lighten the Corvette than a true header in the performance sense, as they are too short to offer much improvement in exhaust scavenging.
  • HEI: High Energy Ignition system. GM left breaker point distributors in 1975 and began using the HEI distributor which features a higher voltage coil and a magnetic breakerless system. Most are good for 6500 – 7000 rpm but above that they can fail to give good results. For most street cars, unless you drive at 7000 rpm, the HEI is a great deal, since parts are available everywhere for it should you ever need to do anything. It does not have a tach drive version so owners of 1963 to 1974 Corvettes need to get the customized tach drive HEI or convert their tach to electronic. 1956 to 1962 Corvettes can use the generator drive for the tach.
  • Holley: A carburetor company in Michigan that builds high performance carburetors. The 4150 and 4160 series was used as standard equipment on some Corvettes in the ’60s. The 2 bbl 2300 series was used for the Tri Power.
  • HVAC: Heating-ventilation-air conditioning system.


  • IRS: Independent Rear Suspension. Introduced in Corvettes in ’63, and basically unchanged until ’84 model year. Basically, it allows each rear wheel to react to the road surface independently of anything that affects the other wheel. There is a chassis mounted differential, two haft shafts that serve as axles to take power from the differential to the stub axles in the trailing arms. The wheels attach to the stub axles. To control camber, a camber rod, or strut rod, under the haft shaft connects the bottom of the differential to the bottom of the trailing arm. The trailing arm attaches to a pivot point in the frame and locates where the rear tire should be. It provides braking forces and acceleration forces to the chassis. The IRS was considered to be a weak link and in the late ’60s and early ’70s was often removed and replaced with a straight Chevy 12 bolt rear end for drag racing. Drag racing rule changes dictated the IRS being used and so many shops found ways to bullet-proof the Corvette IRS, many through the means of stuffing a 12 bolt differential and gear into the Corvette rear end case. Information can be found in mid ’70s magazines such as Hot Rod and Car Craft.






  • L36: 390 hp version of 427, used 1966 – 1969
  • L46: 350 hp version of the 327 from 1965-1968.
  • L48: Base engine in Corvettes from 1972-1979. While most feel it is a dog, it had average performance and was still a basic small block Chevy, so much could be done to enhance its performance. Basically, it was a standard 350, 8.5:1 compression, dished pistons, low performance cam, low performance heads.
  • L68: 400 hp version of 427 in Corvettes from 1967 to 1969. This was basically the 390 hp 427 with a Tri Power on top.
  • L71: 435 hp version of 427 from 1967-1969. The L71 used three 2 bbl Holley carbs on a low rise (almost flat) manifold with a triangular shaped air cleaner.
  • L72: 425 hp version of 427 in 1966. This was originally rated at 460 early in the year and changed to 425 hp.
  • L75: 300 hp version of 327 in 1963 to 1965 with a hydraulic cam.
  • L76: 340 hp version of 327 in 1963, 365 hp version in 1964 and 1965. These had solid lifter cams.
  • L78: 425 hp version of the 396 used in 1965 Corvettes.
  • L79: 350 hp version of the 327 from 1965 to 1968 with a hydraulic cam.
  • L81: 190 hp version of the 350 in 1981.
  • L82: The performance 350″ motor used in the 70s until ’81. Iron heads, various HP ranges up to 235hp, good cam (even by aftermarket standards). The L82 had a 4-bolt main block, forged flat top pistons, a good cam, and wide power range from about 2000 rpm to 5500 rpm.
  • L83: The L83 is the base, and only engine, in the ’82 and ’84 Corvettes.
  • L84: The fuel injection engine in the Sting Ray.
  • L88: Listed as a 430 hp 427, this was the factory race engine from 1967-1969. It featured aluminum heads, 12.5:1 compression, a single Holley on a high rise manifold, a special hood required to clear the additional height, and a list of required options. The 430 hp rating as at 4000 rpm so as to appease the insurance companies and to steer clear those customers who simply bought the highest horsepower without any knowledge of what the engine or car was. This was intended strictly for competition and was derated to avoid problems with pseudo racers of the street. With this option, the radio and heater were deleted.
  • L89: An aluminum head option on the L71 435 hp engine from 1967-1969. Correctly, it is the L71-L89 engine as stated on the order booklets.
  • L98: engine used from 86 until the LT-1 came out (about ’91?). This is the “old” small block design (first gen) with some mods (such as the one piece rear main seal). L98 also refers to the Corvette aluminum cylinder heads. This engine used electronic Tuned Port Injection.
  • Lifters: Small cylindrical objects that ride on the lobes of the camshaft and push the pushrods up to open the valves. Often called tappets by old timers. There are typically hydraulic lifters, solid lifters, and roller lifters.
  • LS1: 350 in the C5 Corvettes. It is a new design, different from the old small blocks of 1955 to 1991.
  • LS4: 454 in passenger cars. This engine had oval port iron heads, iron intake, Quadrajet carb, hydraulic lifter cam, and low compression. It made a lot of torque.
  • LS5: 454 in 1970-1972 Corvettes, rated at 390 hp in gross hp in 1970, 365 hp in ’71, and 270 hp SAE Net in ’72. This engine had oval port iron heads, Quadrajet carb, hydraulic lifter cam, and low compression. It made a lot of torque.
  • LS6: This is a big block motor with tons of power. Also used in Chevelles and other muscle cars. This 454 was only available in ’71 in Corvettes as a 425 hp version with aluminum heads. The engine had rectangular port aluminum heads, aluminum intake, Holley carb, solid lifter cam, and high compression.
  • LS7: 454 crate motor that was never released in a production car. It was on the option list of 1970 as a 460 hp 454. The engine had rectangular port aluminum heads, aluminum intake, Holley carb, solid lifter cam, and high compression.
  • LT-1: Commonly called second-generation small block Chevrolet V8. (Reality is that several design generations of SBC existed prior to the LT-1.) To add to the confusion, the LT1 designation was also used in ’70 on a motor. It features a new block design with 350, overhead valve motor (i.e. cam in block, pushrods, etc.), reverse-flow coolant design (coolant to heads first), improved water pump design, improved ignition system, other small improvements as well. Obviously it bears little in common with the first LT1 motor (first gen block, iron heads). This LT1 was also a monster motor in its day! The second generation LT-1 was the standard engine in 1992 to 1995 Corvettes and the engine for automatic transmission cars in 1996.
  • LT1: The first generation LT1 was the 370 hp small block of 1970, featuring a high rise aluminum intake, a Holley carb, high lift camshaft, special heads, and high compression. The second generation LT1 was the standard engine in 1992 to 1995 Corvettes and the engine for automatic transmission cars in 1996.
  • LT-4: The successor to the LT-1. Not sure of all the improvements, but hp is 340hp (LT-1 in Corvette trim is 300hp, 275hp in Camaros). Only available with the 6 speed in the ’96 Corvette.
  • LT-5: The ZR-1 motor, built by Mercury Marine. 350 cubic inches, 4 cams, 4 valves per cylinder, etc. Originally 375hp, moved to 405 in 92.


  • M20, M21: Muncie 4-speeds used in C2 and C3 Vettes. The M20 was the 4 speed option code for 1963-1965 with the wide ratio (2.54) or close ratio (2.20) being determined by the engine option. In 1963, M20 was a Borg Warner T10D until January when a switch to the Muncie was made. In 1966, the M20 code referred only to the wide ratio 4 speed and M21 referred to the close ratio 4 speed. During the ’70s, M20 also stood for the new Borg Warner 4 speed, the Saginaw 4 speed (’77), and again the Borg Warner (2.64).
  • M22: Another Muncie 4-speed, known as the “Rock Crusher” due to its really noisy operation. The gears were cut at a much lower angle (closer to straight) for a much higher torque rating. This cut design made it very noisy but allowed it to handle really powerful motors. It was only available with certain engines, such as the L88, ZL1, and the ZR packages of the ’70s. Most people who claim to have a Rock Crusher really have a close ratio M21.
  • M40: The option code for the automatic transmission from 1962 to 1981. It was the Powerglide until 1968. From 1968 until 1975, it was the TurboHydramatic 400. In 1976, the L82 had the TurboHydramatic 400 while the base L48 had the TurboHydramatic 350. From 1977, it became the TurboHydramatic 350.
  • Magnaflux®: Magnaflux is a registered trademark of the Magnaflux Corporation for a magnetic particle inspection process for detecting cracks in steel or iron parts such as rods, crankshafts, and heads. It is not the only such process but is the most well known.
  • Mako Shark: A design car in 1965 which was the basis for the 1968 Corvette. The 1965 car was only a styling model and the 1966 Mako Shark was a fully running, function styling car which later was redesigned into the Manta Ray. With the arrival of the Mako Shark, the original 1962 Shark was renamed Mako Shark I and the Mako Shark was renamed the Mako Shark II. The basic design of the Mako Shark followed the Chaparral II body design and led to the ’68 Corvette body design.
  • Mark I, II, III, IV, V: The Mark series is the big block engine family starting with the 348 in 1958 and continuing through the current 454 and 502. Mark I included the 348 and 409. Mark II was the NASCAR Mystery Motor 427. Mark III never reached production. Mark IV started with the 396 and included the 366, 396, 402, 427, and 454. Production ended a few years ago on Mark IV. The current 454 and the 502 are part of the Mark V group.
  • Matching Numbers: Numbers matching in the strictest sense means the numbers of a car all match and are original. This means that the car’s VIN matches with the partial VIN on the engine and one the transmission. The engine identifier and the transmission identifier also match the options on the build sheet. (They should if the VIN matches. If they don’t, you have a fake.) The codes for the other parts such as rear end, radiator, alternator, should also match this car. Most of the items plus individual components (heads, block, intake, etc.) also have date codes either cast or stamped into them and should match. Too often a seller claims numbers matching when all that matches is the engine casting code and maybe the casting date. The partial VIN doesn’t match, is not there, or has been restamped. The transmission, rear end, alternator, and so on have been ignored or forgotten.
  • Mid Year: 1963 through 1967 Corvette.


  • National Corvette Museum: NCRS founded and sponsored the building of a museum for the Corvette in Bowling Green, Kentucky on land across from the Corvette plant. NCRS started a drive to build the museum in 1988 and by 1994, the NCM was a reality, opening Sept. 1994. When driving on I-65, the NCM is easily spotted and reached from the exit next to it. The NCM has a continually changing display that will never be stagnant, so that visitors will see something new on each visit. After Zora Duntov died, his ashes were placed at the NCM and a tribute to the man most responsible for the character of Corvette is there for all to see. The only 1983 Corvette is also housed there, on loan from Chevrolet, as are many Chevrolet special cars.
  • NCRS: The National Corvette Restorers Society – an organization that concentrates on restoring 1986 and older Corvettes to the exact condition they were in when they left the factory. They have a large assortment of documentation that is very helpful to anyone wanting to restore their Corvettes or just to keep them in stock condition. The main concentration is the judging shows where points are given for correctness according to the judging manuals
  • NOS: New Old Stock – most consider this to mean it is new, used stock from back when the car was new. However, many are finding this is often new replacement stock, a lot of which is still available from the dealer still or until just recently. Many are also finding this is actually New Old Service Stock, which are the parts the dealer sold to service the vehicle and were not always the same as the production parts. It is being used as sales hype in many parts ads today.
  • Numbers Matching: See matching numbers


  • OEM: Original Equipment Manufacturer.


  • Pace Car: Reference to a replica of the Corvette used as the Indianapolis 500 Pace Car. So far, there has been a Corvette Pace Car in 1978, 1986, 1995, and 1998 and each had a distinctive model different from the standard Corvette.
  • Ported/Porting: Machining of the intake and exhaust ports of the cylinder head and the intake manifold to improve the flow of gases into and out of the head to increase power.
  • Posi/Positraction: The limited slip differential in a Corvette. The LSD uses clutches that are preloaded to grip to a given point before slipping, so that limited traction periods (wet roads, snow, dirt) will allow both wheels to provide drive force and yet will yield on street cornering forces and slip to prevent breaking an axle as with a solid axle.


  • Quadrajet/Q-Jet: The Rochester four barrel carburetor with a spreadbore design where the front two barrels are smaller than the rear two. This permitted better engine control for emissions reduction. The Q-Jet also featured variable metering in both primary and secondary circuits where the metering rods are raised and change the flow of fuel through the metering orifices depending on need, making this a very good street carburetor. It became the standard carb on Corvettes in 1968 except for high performance versions with a Holley 4160. Most Q-Jets flow around 600 cfm but there are some versions from factory big blocks that flow around 800 cfm.


  • Ram Jet: The Rochester mechanical fuel injection system used on 1957 to 1965 Corvettes and 1957 Chevrolets.
  • Rat Motor: Slang term for ³big block² Chevy engines.


  • Shark: A Corvette showcar; also Corvette production models from 1968 through 1982.
  • Side Pipes: Optional 1965 through 1967, and 1969 side-mount exhausts. Silver Anniversary
  • Small Block: V-8 engines of 265, 283, 305 (1980 California only), 327 and 350 cubic-inch displacement.
  • Solid Axle: 1953 through 1962 Corvette.
  • Split Window: 1963 Corvette coupe.
  • Sting Ray: 1963 through 1967 Corvette.
  • Stingray: 1969 through 1976 Corvette.
  • Survivor: Bloomington award for unrestored, mostly original Corvette.


  • Tach Drive Distributor: The tach drive distributor had a mechanical drive from a cross gear under the distributor breaker plate housing that ran a cable (like a speedometer cable) to a mechanical tachometer to indicate revolutions per minute. In some fuel injection cars, the drive drove the mechanical high pressure pump.
  • Tank Sticker: Starting in 1967, the build sheet with the dealer number, zone number, and the options on the Corvette was glued to the top of the gas tank during assembly. Today, this gives a good reference as to what that Corvette was equipped with when it was built.
  • Top Flight: NCRS judging award for factory originality.
  • Trailer Queen: Slang A term, usually demeaning, for Corvettes that have been restored and now are never driven, going to shows on the trailer and usually having almost zero miles on the odometer. A friend joked once that his restored ’64 had such high mileage (21 miles) because the trailer ramps were too long. This does not apply to race cars since they put many miles on the odometer from the race track and usually in a much harsher environment than most Corvette owners would attempt to drive their daily driver.
  • Tri Power: Basically, any three 2 bbl carb setup. On Corvettes, this was only offered by Chevy in 1967-1969 on 400 hp and 435 hp versions of the 427. It is easily identified by the huge triangular shaped air cleaner. It is similar to the Six Pack versions run on Mopar cars such as the Road Runner, Super Bee, Cuda, Dart, and others on the 340 and 440 engines of the same era.
  • T-top: A coupe design pioneered by Corvette with two removable roof panels and a fixed center structural member. It was used for 1968 through 1982 coupe models.
  • Turbo Jet: Big block engine names during the ’60s.



  • VIN: Vehicle Identification Number.




  • Y-Body: The Corvette, mainly the C4.
  • Y-Pipe: The front exhaust pipe that connects to both exhaust manifolds and then comes together for a single exhaust pipe. This was the pipe on low performance exhaust systems on all cars before catalytic converters. After catalytic converters were required, most car ran a Y-pipe to a single catalytic converter and to a single muffler. Many high performance cars split the pipe after the converter to dual exhaust with two mufflers but it is not a true dual exhaust system.


  • Z06: High-performance option for 1963 models; also high-performance (hardtop) model introduced in 2001.
  • ZR-1: Optional 1990-1995 Corvette model with 32-valve, overhead cam engine; also, 1970 through 1972 engine option (ZR1).