If you ask Corvette enthusiasts about the "dark years" of the Chevy Corvette, they’ll likely discuss the early years of the "C4" model (the mid-1980s) and the end of the "C3" (the late 1970s and early 1980s), when the sports car was starved by emissions regulations and low on power. Most enthusiasts will tell you this era of Vette hasn’t reached collectible status — and some suggest it never will.
And yet, here’s a highly collectible vehicle from the heart of the Corvette dark ages. It’s a 1984 Corvette in mint condition with just 5,956 original miles — a vehicle that was surely put away and preserved to save it, under the theory that it would become highly desired in the future. The only problem is that it never really did, as proven by the fact that it’s offered by Mangino Chevrolet in rural Amsterdam, New York, for just $15,988 — not much for an old, factory-fresh Vette.
But even though this 1984 model may not be the most desirable to collectors, it’s still incredibly interesting to see a time capsule example like this. There’s no wear on the exterior — finished in a very 1980s gold — and the interior is absolutely pristine, with no wear marks on the seats. The digital dashboard looks precisely how Chevy intended it to look back in 1984, which is almost impossible to find today. If you were going to put a 1984 Corvette in a museum, this would be the one.
The Carfax report is sparse, but notes that this Vette was sold new in 1984 in Saratoga Springs, New York, far upstate, and was driven only sparingly since. And now it can be yours to drive if you want — or, to put away, just in case the 1984 Corvette makes a comeback among collectors.
Doug DeMuro is an automotive journalist who has written for many online and magazine publications. He once owned a Nissan Cube and a Ferrari 360 Modena. At the same time.