History of the Corvette Black Book

We are looking at the history of the Corvette Black Book by Mike Antonick. A must-have for any Corvette enthusiast. The pocket-size Black Book has been the go-to guide for Corvette enthusiasts since 1975. This little black book is full of option codes, prices, and final production numbers as well as VIN, block, and head numbers just to name a few. And the small size fits perfectly in your jeans pocket for carrying to your next Corvette auction or while checking out the Corvette you might want to buy.

So, ask yourself?

  • Are you looking for Corvette facts about older Vettes?
  • Wondering what engine block numbers, specifications, production numbers, colors, and options were available?
  • Check on a Vette that is said to be “matching numbers” and wonder, do the numbers match that year?

If this Corvette Little Black Book sounds like what you need, then let’s find out more about the history of the Corvette Black Book.

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Well, I learned that Michael Antonick, owner of Michael Bruce Associates, published his first pocket-sized, stand-alone factual guide called the Corvette Black Book in September 1978.

However, this was not the first book that Mike Antonick authored.

Michael Bruce Associates publishes the books. It is an Ohio corporation established in 1975. The company publishes automotive books and specializes in Corvette and Camaro. Mike has also published titles related to general automobile detailing and photography, many are out of print and only available from a private collector or in Classified Ads. Here is a list of some of the books I found that Mike wrote: California Screamin’ The Glory Days of Corvette Road Racing, Corvette Collector Library, Corvette Driver-Owner Guide, Corvette Price Handbook (s), Corvette Restoration: State of the Art, Corvette Specs 1984-1996, Corvette! America’s Only, Corvette: Sportscar of America, Illustrated Camaro Buyers Guide, Illustrated Corvette Buyers Guide, Secrets of Auto Photography, Secrets of Corvette Detailing, and Secrets of the Showcars.

Mike’s first book(s) was a series of nine hardbound Corvette books called Corvette! The Sensuous American. He published these three times a year during the years 1976, 1977, and 1978 and sold them by subscription only. In 1983, 1984, and 1985 he came out with a second series of nine similar books. A total of eighteen Corvette! The Sensuous American books were sold to subscribers with a no-reprint guarantee to improve the likelihood of value appreciation.

Mike's first book(s) was a series of nine hardbound Corvette books called Corvette! The Sensuous American.
Mike’s first book(s) was a series of nine hardbound Corvette books called Corvette! The Sensuous American.

I found that “In 1978, the company published Corvette! America’s Only, to celebrate the Corvette’s twenty-fifth anniversary.” The book was hardbound, had 144-pages, and was available in bookstores throughout the United States and other countries. The first 7,500 copies of the standard silver-bound edition were sequentially numbered. “A deluxe edition, bound in black calfskin, was sequentially numbered and limited to 300 copies.” If you would want to add one of the deluxe editions, this will set you back about $750.

The last chapter of Corvette! America’s Only was called “The Facts.” This was a year-by-year listing of Corvette information including numbers, history, options, original window-sticker prices, interior, and exterior colors, and unique features. It led to the publication, of the Corvette Black Book in September of 1978.

The Corvette Clack Cook by Mike Antonick is now 44th-years Old!

Now forty-four years later, Mike just released the Corvette Black Book 1953-2022 and it is now available through Vette Vues Magazine.

Production increased to 26,216 for the 2021 model year, yet still fell short of continued robust demand for the mid-engine jewel that has rocked the automotive landscape since its July 18, 2019, reveal.  In a rolling changeover, 2021 production wrapped the evening of September 8, 2021. The first 2022 rolled off the line mere minutes later at 10:49 pm.  This new Corvette Black Book has full 2021 coverage including final production stats and running changes/updates, and 2022 intro data.

Tough act to follow

Introduced in 1978 with 60 pages about 6-inches tall, the Corvette Black Book has grown to 176 pages ten inches in height.  Its beauty, like the car itself, is in its evolution. These are pocket-sized marvels with thousands of facts, options, and option codes, exterior and interior colors and codes, production figures, serial numbers for the body, engine, and component parts, original “window sticker” prices, and a compilation of each model’s unique details. In its precise year-to-year format, the Corvette Black Book puts phenomenal expertise at your fingertips.

Improved yet again

In the Corvette Black Book, production quantities usually trail by one year. So, in addition to 2022 introductory data, the 2022 edition includes 2021 quantities and running production changes. It’s all part of an endless effort to maintain the book’s reputation for detail and accuracy.  To be clear, it is not a guide to current values.

Authenticity

No one’s perfect, but after four decades of attention to detail, the Corvette Black Book has become the enthusiast’s bible. Next time you visit a top-quality Corvette restoration shop, see if there isn’t a you-know-what lying around. Notice which book is stuffed into enthusiasts’ pockets at Corvette events around the world.

Notice 1

The Corvette Black Book and its publisher, Michael Bruce Associates, Inc., has no relationship or connection whatever with Hearst Business Media Corporation, its parent or affiliated corporations, or the Black Book published by the National Auto Research Division of Hearst Business Media Corporation.

Notice 2

Michael Bruce Associates, Inc. and the Corvette Black Book are not associated with or sponsored by GM or Chevrolet Motor Division.

Specs

176 pages, softbound, 4.375” x 10” vertical, 68 b/w photos, uncountable facts.

Corvette Black Book 1953-2022

The Corvette Black Book 1953-2021 edition has the 2021 intro data and final 2020 build numbers.
The Corvette Black Book 1953-2021 edition has the 2021 intro data and final 2020 build numbers.

Softbound, 4.375” x 10” vertical, uncountable facts. $25.00 with Free United States Shipping!

Call Vette Vues Magazine  386-775-2512 or order online


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