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The Chevy Corvette has been around for over 70 years. In that time, the “Plastic Fantastic” has hosted some seriously iconic nameplates across eight generations, like the maniacal C7 ZR1. However, many of these models, the ZR1 included, are miles outside a reasonable budget. Fret not; these four used Chevy Corvettes are some of the best examples for the money in 2023, like the 2008 Corvette C6, the C5 Z06, and the 1990 Corvette C4 ZR-1.

What are some of the best used Chevy Corvettes for the money?

If you’re looking for some of the fastest, most interesting used Chevy Corvettes for the money in 2023, these five models boast naturally aspirated power and taut, enjoyable driving experiences. In some cases, they could even be collectible. 

  • 1990 Corvette C4 ZR-1
  • 2001 Corvette C5 Base
  • 2002 Corvette C5 Z06
  • 2008 Corvette C6 Z51

When it comes to the C5 and C6 generations, the base models are still fast by today’s standards. Moreover, a base-model 2001 Corvette has a fair private party value of just $14,093. Not bad for a coupe with a 350-horsepower V8 and a six-speed manual gearbox. However, collectors who want a fourth-generation ‘Vette should look for a solid C4 ZR-1 and its 380-horsepower LT5 V8. 

Is a 1990 Corvette ZR-1 a good investment?

A red C4 Chevy Corvette ZR-1 cruises on a banked track.
C4 ZR-1 | General Motors

A 1990 Chevy Corvette ZR-1 from the C4 generation has an average value of $33,373, per While that’s a steeper ask than its king-of-the-hill successor, the C5 Z06, Chevrolet produced just 6,939 of these tire-shredding C4 models. As a result, the ZR-1 is likely to continue to build value as time goes on. 

Moreover, the ZR-1’s eager 380-horsepower 5.7L LT5 V8 and ZF manual gearbox establish the Corvette model as a competent track car and corner-carver, much more so than the standard L98 models.  

How much is a C5 Corvette today?

A 2001 Chevy Corvette C5 base has a fair dealer value of around $16,523– with average mileage. As a result, the 350-horsepower Corvette is a versatile option for performance car shoppers. For instance, the track-bound can opt for a rigid hardtop with a six-speed manual.

Further, the base model isn’t a compromise like previous generations; a 2001 Corvette will top out at 175 mph, as quick as the previous ZR-1. However, fairweather fans will find cruising catharsis aboard a four-speed automatic convertible model. 

Is a C5 Z06 fast?

A 2002 Corvette C5 Z06 parks on a black top at sunset.
C5 Z06 | General Motors

The C5 Chevy Corvette Z06 ditched the base model’s LS1 in favor of a 405-horsepower LS6 with upgraded cylinder heads, a revised intake manifold, and a higher compression ratio. The result? Car and Driver reported that a 2002 C5 Z06 would rocket to 60 mph in a blistering 3.9 seconds on its way to a 12.4-second quarter mile. 

What’s more, savvy car shoppers can expect to get a 2002 Chevy Corvette C5 Z06 for around $30,000 or less.  As a result, the Z06 from the fifth-generation lineup is one of the best performance bargains on the market, full stop.  

How much HP is in a C6 Corvette?

A white used C6 Chevy Corvette shows off its front-end styling.
C6 Corvette | General Motors

The base Chevy Corvette C6 produces 400 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque from its naturally aspirated 6.0L V8. As a result, the C6 will outmuscle modern performance coupes like the Dodge Challenger R/T and Porsche 718 Boxster. 

Better yet, reports that a used 2005 Chevrolet Corvette has an average list price of $25,668. That’s right; it’s a used ‘Vette with a removable roof panel for less than a 2023 Ford Mustang EcoBoost.

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