The year 1982 was the last for the C3 Corvette, whose body dated back to 1968 but whose basic chassis design went back to the C2 of 1963. Chevrolet offered a “Collector’s Edition” for $22,537, which was the first Corvette to cost more than $20,000, but there were no 4-speed manual gearboxes at all this year and no optional L82 engine. One consolation was that the automatic was now a 4-speed unit. A 200-bhp 350 cubic-inch Chevy small-block V-8 was the only engine available. Sales dropped to 25,407 as Corvette fans waited for the next model. It would be delayed for a year, finally arriving in 1984.

Of the 1982 Corvettes built, 18,648 were basic coupes while 6,759 were the Collector Edition, which also offered the first opening hatchback. Collector Editions also had optional special wheels which resembled the 1967 “bolt-on” wheels. The model also had special silver-beige paint, matching leather interior, and cloisonné emblems.

Chevrolet also introduced “Cross-Fire” fuel injection, which combined two fuel injectors for better mileage – a far cry from the Rochester unit last seen in 1965, whose sole job was to get as much fuel into the engine as possible. The Computer Command Central injection system was refined from 1981 and could now make 80 adjustments per second, compared with 10 in 1982.

The base 1982 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe cost $18,290 and all were built in Bowling Green, Ky. Much equipment had little had to do with performance. The biggest seller was cruise control (2,414 buyers), which cost $165, followed by power door locks (23,936) for $155, power driver’s seat (22,585) for $197, AM/FM cassette stereo (23,555) for $423, electric sport mirrors (20,301) for $125, white letter tires P255 6015 (19,070) for $542, rear window de-fogger (16,886) for $129, and power antenna (15,557) for $60. The 1982 Corvette was the last model with an optional 8-track tape player. A total of 923 buyers paid $386 for that already obsolete combination. The only options remotely connected to performance were the FE7 gymkhana suspension (5,547) for $61, and the radio delete (150, who got a $124 credit).

Not surprisingly, the Silver Beige color of the Collector’s Edition Corvette was the top color (6,759), while the rest were well behind with some low numbers. White (2,975) was followed by Black (2,357), Red (2,155), Charcoal (1,093), Dark Claret (853), Silver Green (723), Silver (711), Gold (648), Bright Blue (567) and Dark Blue (562). There were four two-tones available: Silver Blue/Dark Blue (1,667), Silver/Dark Claret (1,301), Silver/Charcoal (1,239) and White/Silver (664).

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