Stare in wonder at this classic Corvette Sting Ray race car

By topgear, 25 July 2019

While the new 2020 Chevrolet Corvette is an important milestone in the ‘Vette nameplate – mid-engined, really very fast, ‘affordable’ (for a 500bhp supercar) – we can’t stop staring at this 1959 wonder.

It’s the Chevrolet ‘Sting Ray Racer’, a concept car that previewed the styling of the second generation Corvette. Makes sense. Legend has it the ‘Ray Racer was built on the bones of a first-generation Corvette SS racer, and was designed by an after-hours team intent on showing off their prowess.

Job done, we’d say. There was a 300bhp+ 4.6-litre V8 under the bonnet, too, and after a brief flirtation with Actual Racing, the car nicknamed XP-87 later got a job as the personal car of the very man who had championed its creation: Bill Mitchell, former GM design VP.

Those lines. That monster side exhaust. The short window, snug cabin and overall size of the thing. Perfect.