Unlock the 1968 Corvette Specifications – An Iconic Classic

Discover the Iconic 1968 Corvette Specifications – All the Details You Need to Know in our Overview.

Greg Horton's 1968 L89 Corvette Coupe
Greg Hortons 1968 L89 Corvette Coupe

The 1968 C3 Corvette is every Corvette collector’s dream machine. It is the first year of the third-generation body style.

The 1968 Corvette was sculpted to resemble the Mako Shark II show car of 1965. The 1968 Corvette Stingray design was refreshed, and the third generation of Corvettes was born. The C3 was longer, wider, and lower than the C2 that preceded it. In fact, the ’68 Corvette had gained weight over the previous generation with a Curb weight on the Coupe of 3210, and the Convertible was 3220.

The body was completely redesigned on what is basically a carry-over chassis. The coupe lost its fastback window and gained a removable back window and removable t-tops, giving it an almost convertible feel, although full convertibles were still available. The battery was moved to a compartment behind the seats. Nineteen-sixty-eight was the last appearance of the ignition switch on the dash until 1997. Also unique that year was the door-opening mechanism. It has a spring-loaded finger plate with a separate release button.

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If you ordered the 1968 Vette, you could get a factory-installed anti-theft alarm system as an option, only 388 cars were so equipped. Air conditioning was also an option and cost $412.90, with 5,664 orders.

The “Sting Ray” badge did not appear anywhere on the ’68 Vette, but it did return in ’69 as “Stingray.”

The Corvette’s instrument panel also went through a complete redesign to be as up-to-date as the exterior. For collectors of third-generation Corvettes, the 1968 model is highly valued and is recognizable by its chrome front and rear bumpers.  Many were decked out with a rear luggage rack.

The Corvette C3 Stingray sales had a total of 28,630 Corvettes! The sales for the new “Shark” were a new all-time record and set the stage for the fifteen-year run of the third-generation Corvette. The 68 was built in two different body styles – coupe and convertible.

This third-generation model lasted from 1968 through 1982 and is referred to as the Shark model. This third-generation Corvette started a 15-year run.

What did the C3 1968 Base Corvette cost?

  • Base Corvette Coupe with 327 cu. in. 300 hp engine and three-speed manual transmission: $4,663.00.
  • Base Corvette Convertible with 327 cu. in. 300 hp engine and three-speed manual transmission: $4,320.00.

C3 1968 Corvette VINs

  • Serial No. 194678S400001 – 194678S428566

How many Corvette coupes and convertibles were produced in 1968?

The 68 Vette had a Total Production of 28,566.  There were 9,936 Coupes and 18,630 Convertibles.

What were the Exterior and Interior Colors for the 1968 Corvettes?

1968 Chevrolet Corvettes came in ten exterior colors and were available in either vinyl or leather for the interior. The following is a list of both Quantity and Options Codes.

CODE – EXTERIOR – QUANTITY
#900 Tuxedo Black 708
#972 Polar White 1,868
#974 Rally Red 2,918
#976 LeMans Blue 4,722
#978 International Blue 2,473
#983 British Green 4,779
#984 Safari Yellow 3,133
#986 Silverstone Silver 3,435
#988 Cordovan Maroon 1,155
#992 Corvette Bronze 3,374

CODE – COLOR – INTERIOR
Standard – Black Vinyl
#402 Black Leather
#407 Red Vinyl
#408 Red Leather
#411 Dark Blue Vinyl
#414 Medium Blue Vinyl
#415 Medium Blue Leather
#425 Dark Orange Vinyl
#426 Dark Orange Leather
#435 Tobacco Vinyl
#436 Tobacco Leather
#442 Gunmetal Vinyl

The title of the 1968 Corvette brochure was 1968 CORVETTE: THE TRUE SPORTS CAR FROM CHEVROLET.

1968 Corvette Engine Options

The 1968 Corvette gave customers the opportunity to select from six different engines. Ranging from a conventional 300 horsepower, 327 cubic inch small block – installed by the manufacturer and mated with a three-speed manual gearbox – or if they wanted a more thrilling experience, they could pick the 1968 Corvette 427 cubic inch L71 V8 engine with 435 horsepower.

RPO# L36 – 427ci, 390hp Engine – 7,717 sold – $200.15
RPO# L68 – 427ci, 400hp Engine – 1,932 sold – $305.50
RPO# L71 – 427ci, 435hp Engine – 2,898 sold – $437.10
RPO# L79 – 327ci, 350hp Engine – 9,440 sold – $105.35
RPO# L88 – 427ci, 430hp Engine – 80 sold – $947.90
RPO# L89 – Aluminum Cylinder Heads with L71 – 624 sold – $805.75

We will take a look at three of these 1968 Corvette engine options in more detail.

Corvette’s 1968 L71 427/435 HP Mark IV big-block V-8 – a milestone in Corvette engine development.

In 1968, the most powerful production engine on the Corvette Stingray sports car was the L71 427/435 HP Mark IV big-block V-8 with tri-power carburetion. Thanks to Zora Arkus-Duntov’s insistence on continuously upgrading the Corvette’s performance, this was a watershed achievement.

Already by 1968, the big-block Corvette had gained fame as a capable sports car, especially on the track. The one recipe for it is as follows: Hot Rod components and a chassis with an unsurpassed ability to withstand anything.

The heavy cast-iron block uses a 4-bolt main bearing caps anchoring a forged steel crankshaft and connecting rods. With forged aluminum pistons, 11.0:1 compression, oversized valves in cavernous rectangular-port heads, and one of the wildest solid-lifter cams of any Chevrolet engine. This engine offered big breathing potential, and it was optimized by the engine’s three Holley 2-barrelled carburetors positioned in line, which were installed on a Winters aluminum intake manifold.

By sucking in air from the central carburetor, the L71 offers excellent low-end tractability. However, once the progressive linkage is opened, the engine offers unrivaled power – making this option for someone seeking linear power delivery.

This was the ultimate level of production of Corvette power, which would not be surpassed for thirty years.

1968 Corvette L89 Convertible 03554 owned by James Carrell Naples FL on display in the 2019 Bloomington Gold Special Collection
1968 Corvette L89

L71 Mark IV big-block V-8 engine fitted with L89 aluminum cylinder heads.

Created originally for racing, the L89 heads were first seen in the L88 prototypes manufactured by Chevrolet Engineering in 1966.  There were only 624 1968 Corvettes equipped with the deceptively powerful L71 Mark IV big-block V-8 engine fitted with L89 aluminum cylinder heads.

The L71 was introduced the previous year (see details above). The factory rating of 435 HP at 5,800 RPM was predictably misleading, as the L71 would rev to 6,500 RPM with a commensurate boost in horsepower well beyond the 435 figure. Adding the L89 optional aluminum heads shaved weight and further boosted output with specially designed combustion chambers.

Chevrolet designed the intake and exhaust system of the L71 Corvette as two improvements to the car: they lowered the front-end weight by 75 pounds, and they increased the size of the ports and valves as well as the power and size of the combustion chambers. The result was an even more powerful street performance that enticed enthusiasts and collectors alike.

Regular Production Option L88

The Regular Production Option L88 was designed for both dominating production and FIA GT class racers.

This particular engine had an especially heavy cast iron block with 4-bolt main bearing caps, plus a steel crank specially forged from 5160 steel alloy, cross-drilled to make sure it has proper lubrication and Tuftrided for extreme durability. Steel rods, able to withstand even the most powerful force and heavy loads, are fitted with domed 12.5:1 forged aluminum pistons. The lightweight aluminum heads have large 2.19-inch intake valves and 1.84-inch exhaust valves. The L88 engine in a Chevrolet featured the most radical camshaft time of any of the company’s productions.

An L88 engine is designed by Corvette engineer Denny Davis and contains a solid-lifter cam with high duration, producing 337 degrees intake and 340 degrees exhaust with a lift of .5365 intake and .5560 exhaust. Thick pushrods were employed, along with strong rocker arms, spring retainers, and lockers. Utilizing an 850 cfm Holley 4-barrel carburetor with vacuum secondaries attached to an open-plenum aluminum intake manifold, this was sealed to a cowl induction hood drawing cool, high-pressure air from the base of the windshield.

1968 Corvette Shark Transmissions

For the buyer who wanted an automatic transmission, Chevy now offered the optional 3-speed Turbo Hydra-Matic 400 instead of the 2-speed Powerglide.   The base 1968 Corvette received the 3-speed manual transmission.  Other options were:

RPO# M20 4-Speed Manual Transmission – 10,760 – $184.35
RPO# M21 4-Speed Manual Transmission, close-ratio – 12,337 – $184.35
RPO# M22 4-Speed Manual Transmission, close-ratio, heavy-duty – 80 – $263.30
RPO# M40 Turbo Hydra-Matic Automatic Transmission – 5,063 – $226.45

During the 60s and 70s, customizing your Corvettes was very popular. Many builders were making body kits for the Corvette. We are looking back at the various custom modifications on the C3 Corvettes that could be installed by an owner, contracted to a shop, or purchased as turn-key vehicles. Learn more about the Custom C3 Corvettes during this era.

1968 Corvette
1968 Corvette

The third-generation Corvette was produced from 1968 through 1982 model years and produced in St. Louis, Missouri. Read on to learn about the 1968 iconic classic sports car’s specifications.

1968 Corvette Specs Table of Contents

1968 Corvette Options, RPO Numbers, Quantity, and Cost

Below we have a chart of the 1968 Corvette production numbers by option code, description, quantity, and prices they originally were listed at. If you would like to have a pocket-size book with all the details from all the years, make sure you pick up the Corvette Black Book in our store.

RPO#DESCRIPTIONQUANTITY$ RETAIL
19437Base Corvette Sport Coupe9,9364,663.00
19467Base Corvette Convertible18,6304,320.00
n/aGenuine Leather Seats2,42979.00
A01Soft Ray Tinted Glass, all windows17,63515.80
A02Soft Ray Tinted Glass, windshield5,50910.55
A31Power Windows7,06557.95
A82Headrests3,19742.15
A85Custom Shoulder Belts (std with Coupe)35026.35
C07Auxillary Hardtop (convertible only)8,735231.75
C08Vinyl Covering (for Auxillary Hardtop)3,05052.70
C50Rear Window Defroster69331.60
C60Air Conditioning5,664412.90
F41Special Front and Rear Suspension1,75836.90
G81Positraction Rear Axle27,00846.35
J50Power Brakes9,55942.15
J56Special Heavy Duty Brakes81384.45
K66Transistor Ignition System5,45773.75
L36427ci, 390hp Engine7,717200.15
L68427ci, 400hp Engine1,932350.50
L71427ci, 435hp Engine2,898437.10
L79327ci, 350hp Engine9,440105.35
L88427ci, 430hp Engine80947.90
L89Aluminum Cylinder Heads with L71 Engine624805.75
M204-Speed Manual Transmission10,760184.35
M214-Speed Manual Transmission, close ratio12,337184.35
M224-Speed Manual Transmission, close ratio, heavy duty80263.30
M40Turbo Hydra-Matic Automatic Transmission5,063226.45
N11Off Road Exhaust System4,69536.90
N36Telescopic Steering Column6,47742.15
N40Power Steering12,36494.80
P01Bright Metal Wheel Covers8,97157.95
PT6F70x15 Red Stripe Tires, Nylon11,68631.30
PT7F70x15 White Stripe Tires, Nylon9,69231.30
UA6Alarm System38826.35
U15Speed Warning Indicator3,45310.55
U69AM-FM Radio24,609172.75
U79AM-FM Stereo Radio3,311278.10

1968 Corvette Exterior Colors

The 1968 Corvette had ten exterior color choices!

CODEEXTERIORQUANTITY
900Tuxedo Black708
972Polar White1,868
974Rally Red2,918
976LeMans Blue4,722
978International Blue2,473
983British Green4,779
984Safari Yellow3,133
986Silverstone Silver3,435
988Cordovan Maroon1,155
992Corvette Bronze3,374

1968 Corvette Interior Colors

The C3’s interior had several options: tinted glass, air conditioning, power windows, power steering, tilt-telescope steering column, AM/FM radio or stereo, headrests, leather seating, rear window defogger, and a factory-installed alarm system.

CODECOLOR
stdBlack Vinyl
402Black Leather
407Red Vinyl
408Red Leather
411Dark Blue Vinyl
414Medium Blue Vinyl
415Medium Blue Leather
425Dark Orange Vinyl
426Dark Orange Leather
435Tobacco Vinyl
436Tobacco Leather
442Gunmetal Vinyl

1968 Corvette Engine Options

The 68 Corvette came in a standard convertible or coupe trim with six optional engine platforms, ranging from 300 horsepower to the mighty 435 horsepower L71 V8 engine.

  • 327ci – 300HP Engine (std)
  • 327ci -350HP Engine
  • 427ci – 390HP Engine
  • 427ci -400HP Engine
  • 427ci – 430HP Engine
  • 427ci – 435HP Engine
TypeSizeCarbHorse PowerTourqe
L79327ci1x4bbl350 hp @ 5800 rpm360 lb-ft @ 3600 rpm
Base327ci1x4bbl300 hp @ 5000 rpm360 lb-ft @ 3200 rpm
L88427ci1x4bbl560 hp @ 6400 rpm
L71427ci3x2bbl435 hp @ 5800 rpm460 lb-ft @ 4000 rpm
L89427ci3x2bbl435 hp @ 5800 rpm460 lb-ft @ 4000 rpm
L36427ci1x4bbl390 hp @ 5400 rpm460 lb-ft @ 3600 rpm

Want to learn what is the difference between a 1968 and a 1969 Corvette is? Check out our C3 Corvette Overview to see the changes that took place along the way on the third-generation Vette often referred to as the “shark” generation of Corvettes.

How much does the 1968 Corvette weigh?

  • 2 Door Sport Coupe 3,055 lbs
  • 2 Door Convertible 3,070 lbs

1968 Corvette Chassis Data

ModelWheelbaseOverall LengthWidthFront TreadRear TreadTires
Corvette98 in182.1 in69.2 in58.3 in59 inF70 x 15

According to J.D. Power and NADA Guides, the value of a 1968 Chevrolet Corvette is as follows.:

On the low retail end, around $23,500. The average retail is around $46,700, and the high retail is around 66,200.

Are you interested in more 1968 Corvette Information?

1968 Chevrolet Corvettes featured in the Bloomington Gold Special Collection in 2019

You might also enjoy looking back at the 1968 Corvette advertisements as well as the 1968 Corvette Brochure.

This 1968 Owens Corning Fiberglass Corvette #12 is one of the Winningest Corvettes that ever raced. It is the 2nd of 3 campaigned by the Owens Corning Fiberglass Race Team, which was comprised of Tony Delorenzo and Jerry Thompson. The race car is restored to FIA Trim and was restored to original specifications by Kevin Mackay at Corvette Repair, with the assistance of Tony Delorenzo and Jerry Thompson, who were the primary drivers for the Owens/Corning team.

You can always check out our RECENT BLOG POSTS.

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