Five N03 Big Tank Corvettes from The Richard Cohen Collection Goes to Mecum Auction

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Five N03 Big Tank Corvettes from The Richard Cohen Collection at Mecum Indy Auction
Five N03 Big Tank Corvettes from The Richard Cohen Collection at Mecum Indy Auction

The Mecum Indianpolis auction is over.  At the end of this article we will post the results as well as the Mecum Actuion YouTube video.

For the first time, the Richard Cohen Big Tank Collection will be going to the Mecum Auction in Indianapolis, Indiana. Lot numbers S154, S154.1, S155, S156 and S156.1 will be going across the auction block Saturday, May 19, 2018.  (1967 Corvette NO3, 1963 Corvette ZO6 NO3,1964 Corvette NO3, 1965 Corvette NO3, 1966 Corvette NO3)

The Mecum website says that this is the only complete collection of its kind in the world, comprising one N03-optioned Corvette from every year of production, spanning 1963 through 1967.

So what is an N03 RPO? We learn from the Corvette Black Book that it is the 36-gallon fuel tank. This option was only available for five years, and there was only a total of 210 produced.

In 1963 there were just 63 that selected that RPO N03. The price was $202.30 and remained the same for 1964 and 1965. In 1964 only 38 took this. In 1965 there were 41. In 1966 the price dropped to $198.05, and 66 owners selected it. The last year this was offered was 1967, and only 2 chose the, and the rate remained the same.

It is indeed understandable why the Big Tank or N03 Corvettes are so valuable to collectors.

The five Corvettes we are going to look at today were owned by the late Richard Cohen, the founder of Long Island Corvette Supply in Copiague, New York. Mr. Cohen is one of the pioneering contributors to the Corvette restoration hobby that developed in the late 1970s.

For a little history on the company, Long Island Corvette Supply specializes in Mid Year Corvette Parts for the 1963-1967 Corvettes. Richard Cohen and his daughter Kim began selling reproduction parts in 1979. Richard’s son had purchased a 1963 Corvette that needed tons of parts, but back then very little was available. Mr. Cohen, having studied engineering in school, so he started to construct some of the elements that his son needed. He decided to market these parts. He began to advertise, and soon orders began to come in. Long Island Corvettes ads appear in Vette Vues Magazine every month.

Five NO3 Big Tank Corvettes from the Richard Cohen's Collection, Long Island Corvette Supply, are going to the 2018 Mecum Auction in Indianapolis, Indiana. Lot numbers S154, S154.1, S155, S156 and S156.1 will be going across the auction block Saturday, May 19, 2018.
Five NO3 Big Tank Corvettes from the Richard Cohen’s Collection, Long Island Corvette Supply, are going to the 2018 Mecum Auction in Indianapolis, Indiana. Lot numbers S154, S154.1, S155, S156 and S156.1 will be going across the auction block Saturday, May 19, 2018.

Long Island Corvettes manufacture many parts with headmarks, correct colors, all the details to match original samples and blueprints. They also sell midyear parts to many of the other vendors. Their parts come labeled and many with instructions or tips.

In the early 1980s, Mr. Cohen learned of the N03 Corvettes and began accumulating them. He has the only combination of N03 Corvettes from every year they produced, and it now stands alone as the single complete collection of these unique vehicles.

It is no surprise that each of these Corvettes meets the highest standard of excellence in the restoration and preservation.

We learn from the Mecum Auction’s website that each of these five rare, best-of-breed Corvettes will be offered individually. All of the N03 Corvettes will cross the auction block on the same day in the same location.

This presents a rare moment for someone to own and preserve these irreplaceable American automotive treasures.

  • 1967 Corvette NO3 327/350 HP – 1 of 2 Produced
  • 1963 Corvette ZO6/NO3 327/360 HP – 1 of 63 Produced
  • 1964 Corvette NO3 327/300 HP – 1of 38 Produced
  • 1965 Corvette NO3 396/425 HP – 1or 41 Produced
  • 1966 Corvette NO3 427/425 HP – 1 of 66 Produced

You can check out the special brochure on the link below that the Mecum Auction has put together for this incredible offer:

https://cdn1.mecum.com/assets/docs/SC18_Cohen/index.html

Richard Cohen’s crown jewel of the Big Tank Collection is the 1967 CHEVROLET CORVETTE N03, 327/350 HP, 1 of 2 Produced and was the Vette Vues Magazine cover car on the November 2017 issue.

Corvette of the November 2017 Issue Vette Vues Magazine, Volume 46, Issue Number 4. On the Cover: From the Bloomington 1967 Gold Collection: The car is a 1967 327/350 Coupe and is one of 5 big tank cars in Richard Cohen's 63-67 big tank collection. Richard Cohen is the founder of Long Island Corvette Supply and passed away last January. Photographer: Helene Zasadny
Corvette of the November 2017 Issue Vette Vues Magazine, Volume 46, Issue Number 4. On the Cover: From the Bloomington 1967 Gold Collection: The car is a 1967 327/350 Coupe and is one of 5 big tank cars in Richard Cohen’s 63-67 big tank collection. Richard Cohen is the founder of Long Island Corvette Supply and passed away last January. Photographer: Helene Zasadny

The Richard Cohen Collection’s 1967 Big Tank Corvette is powered by the L79 327/350 HP small-block backed by a Muncie M20 4-speed and G81 3.36 Positraction rear end. It is optioned with factory air conditioning, power steering, and brakes, power windows, Soft Ray-tinted glass, whitewall tires, an AM/FM radio and the N03 fuel tank.

1967 Corvette NO3 Big Tank from the Richard Cohen's Collection going to the 2018 Mecum Auction Indy. It is on display in the Bloomington Gold Collection in 2017. Photo Credits: Jack Doke
1967 Corvette NO3 Big Tank from the Richard Cohen’s Collection going to the 2018 Mecum Auction Indy. It is on display in the Bloomington Gold Collection in 2017. Photo Credits: Jack Doke

Cohen purchased this car in 1988 and become its fourth owner. After purchasing the car it underwent a frame-off restoration.

1967 Corvette NO3 Big Tank from the Richard Cohen's Collection going to the 2018 Mecum Auction Indy. It is on display Bloomington Gold Collection in 2017. Photo Credits: Jack Doke
1967 Corvette NO3 Big Tank from the Richard Cohen’s Collection going to the 2018 Mecum Auction Indy. It is on display in the Bloomington Gold Collection in 2017. Photo Credits: Jack Doke

Here are just some if this 1967 Tanker Corvette’s Achievements: Bloomington Gold Special Collection multiple times and Gold Collection 2017, Bloomington Gold Hall of Fame Inductee, NCRS Regional Top Flight Award, NCRS National Top Flight Award, NCRS Performance Verification (PV) Award, NCRS Duntov Award, Chip’s Choice NO3 Collection @ Carlisle, Vette Vues Magazine Cover Car Nov 2017, Magazine feature car multiple times.

1967 Corvette NO3 Big Tank from the Richard Cohen's Collection going to the 2018 Mecum Auction Indy. It is on display Bloomington Gold Collection in 2017. Photo Credits: Jack Doke
1967 Corvette NO3 Big Tank from the Richard Cohen’s Collection going to the 2018 Mecum Auction Indy. It is on display in the Bloomington Gold Collection in 2017. Photo Credits: Jack Doke

This 1 of 2 produced in 1967 Big Tank Corvette is painted Ermine White exterior with the Bright Blue vinyl interior.

1967 Corvette NO3 Big Tank from the Richard Cohen's Collection going to the 2018 Mecum Auction Indy. It is on display Bloomington Gold Collection in 2017. Photo Credits: Jack Doke
1967 Corvette NO3 Big Tank from the Richard Cohen’s Collection going to the 2018 Mecum Auction Indy. It is on display in the Bloomington Gold Collection in 2017. Photo Credits: Jack Doke
1967 Corvette NO3 Big Tank from the Richard Cohen's Collection going to the 2018 Mecum Auction Indy. It is on display Bloomington Gold Collection in 2017. Photo Credits: Jack Doke
1967 Corvette NO3 Big Tank from the Richard Cohen’s Collection going to the 2018 Mecum Auction Indy. It is on display in the Bloomington Gold Collection in 2017. Photo Credits: Jack Doke

Documented with the original Protect-O-Plate and original Corvette Order Copy (tank sticker) showing its extremely unique option list, this N03 Corvette is arguably the rarest 1967 Corvette in the world.

Protect-o-plate for 1967 NO3 Big Tank Corvette from the Richard Cohen's Collection
Protect-o-plate for 1967 NO3 Big Tank Corvette from the Richard Cohen’s Collection
Protect-o-plate for 1967 NO3 Big Tank Corvette from the Richard Cohen's Collection
Protect-o-plate for 1967 NO3 Big Tank Corvette from the Richard Cohen’s Collection
Tank Sticker for 1967 NO3 Big Tank Corvette from the Richard Cohen's Collection
Tank Sticker for 1967 NO3 Big Tank Corvette from the Richard Cohen’s Collection

OPTIONS:

  • N03 36.5 gallon gas tank
  • L79 327/350 HP engine
  • M20 4-speed transmission
  • C60 air conditioning
  • A31 power windows
  • N40 power steering
  • J50 power brakes
  • U69 AM/FM radio
  • A01 tinted glass
  • P92 Whitewall tires
  • G81 3.36 Positraction Rear

The story of why the rarity of the 1967 Tanker Corvette lies in the fact that a new generation of Corvette had been planned for that year. However, full of design problems, the new Corvette was delayed until 1968, and the supply of handmade 36.5-gallon tanks was allowed to wane in expectation of the new models. The Mecum website explains that “By the time production began on the holdover 1967 models, few tanks remained in inventory, and it is known that several orders for the big-tank option were left unfulfilled.”

Results:

  • LOT S154 1967 Corvette NO3 1 or 2 Produced Sold for $418,000
  • LOT S154.1 1963 Corvette ZO6/NO3 Sold (Amount not available at this time)
  • LOT S155 1964 Corvette NO3 1 of 38 Produced Sold for $231,000
  • LOT S156 1965 Corvette NO3 Sold $368,500
  • LOT S156.1 1966 Corvette NO3 Sold for $412,500

 

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