HomeAutoHunterAutoHunter Spotlight: 1980 Chevrolet Corvette

AutoHunter Spotlight: 1980 Chevrolet Corvette

Recently serviced C3 in a custom “merlot” hue


Featured on AutoHunter, the online auction platform driven by, is this 1980 Chevrolet Corvette coupe. The car is being offered by a dealership in Somersworth, New Hampshire, and the auction will end on Thursday.

It’s mind-boggling to think that 1980 was nearly 45 years ago. I’m one of those people who still have a habit of back-dating everything from the year 2000 and thinking, “Oh, that was only 20 years ago.” Are you guilty of the same? In order to set the stage for viewing this Corvette, let’s put our minds in the right era: The year 1980 marked the birth of the Rubik’s Cube, CNN, and Pac Man. The top movies of the year were The Shining and The Empire Strikes Back.

Model year 1980 fell toward the end of the lifespan for the third-generation Corvette; the C3 had been around since 1968 and was overdue for a makeover, but Chevrolet hadn’t left it entirely alone all that time. In fact, 1980 was a particularly important year because the car’s front and rear ends were restyled with aerodynamic spoilers. This was also the first year that air conditioning, power windows, sport exterior mirrors, and a tilt/telescoping steering column became standard equipment. It seems Chevrolet wanted to phase the generation out on a strong note by raising the bar equipment-wise. There were 40,614 Corvettes produced for the model year, followed by a decline in both 1981 and 1982, which would mark the end of the C3.

The first thing you’ll notice about today’s featured Corvette is its unique paint scheme. The selling dealer calls the exterior color a “purple merlot,” and the metallic effect looks particularly eye-catching in direct sunlight. The third-generation Corvette didn’t offer a convertible option; the closest you could get was a removable roof panel, which this car has. The slotted mag wheels and BFGoodrich raised-white-letter tires are the perfect pairing.

Power comes from an L48 350cid V8 paired with a three-speed automatic transmission. Recent service to the car included replacement of the aluminum radiator, master cylinder, alternator, and rear wheel bearings. The listing includes a video showing a drive-by, and the exhaust note sounds mean!

Perhaps it’s time you start assembling a playlist with Blondie, Pink Floyd, Olivia Newton-John, and Michael Jackson. This Corvette is begging for a weekend cruise, and the form-fitting driver seat has your name all over it.

The auction for this 1980 Chevrolet Corvette coupe ends Thursday, April 25, 2024 at 11:15 a.m. (PDT)

Visit the AutoHunter listing for more information and photo gallery

Tyson Hugie
Tyson Hugie
Tyson Hugie is a Phoenix-based automotive enthusiast who has been writing for The Journal since 2016. His favorite automotive niche is 1980s and 1990s Japanese cars, and he is a self-diagnosed “Acura addict” since he owns a collection of Honda and Acura cars from that era. Tyson can usually be found on weekends tinkering on restoration projects, attending car shows, or enjoying the open road. He publishes videos each week to his YouTube channel and is also a contributing author to Arizona Driver Magazine,, NSX Driver Magazine, and other automotive publications. His pride and joy is a 1994 Acura Legend LS coupe with nearly 600,000 miles on the odometer, but he loves anything on four wheels and would someday like to own a 1950 Buick Special like his late grandfather’s.


  1. My first brand new, right off the showroom floor, car was an 1980 Corvette. Beautiful white on the outside, oyster on the inside. Used it everyday until the cam shaft went. Evidently it had never been heat treated. After the engine rebuild, then the transmission went and that rebuild didn’t include overdrive. Never had any problems with the limited slip though. All her woes happened before she was 40K miles old. So I would say she was like a high priced hooker, looked good on the arm but was all about the money. So far my only true lemon.


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