1955 Corvette Fact Sheet

The Corvette
Gets a V-8!


The big news at Chevrolet was that there would now be an optional V-8 engine with 195 HP!



General Year Information

Although not a part of the original Corvette project, Zora Arkus-Duntov was responsible for the addition of the V8 engine and three-speed manual transmission. Duntov improved the car’s marketing and image and helped the car compete with the new V8 engined Ford Thunderbird, Studebaker Speedster and the larger Chrysler C-300, and turned the Corvette away from its lackluster performance and into a credible performer.

The overwhelming majority of 1955 Corvettes were V-8 powered (694).  A V-8 powered 1955 Corvette could go from 0 to 60 mph in 8.7 seconds and from 0 to 100 mph in 24.7 seconds.


Models Offered

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The 1955 Corvette’s fiberglass body, chrome-framed grille with 13 heavy vertical chrome bars, rounded front fenders with recessed headlights, no side windows or outside door handles, a wraparound windshield and protruding, fender-integrated taillights were retained. The big change was the 195 HP V-8. The “V” in “Corvette” on the front fender side emblem was enlarged and gold colored, touting the V8 engine under the hood.

1955 V-8 and I-6 Corvettes continued with the mandatory-option Powerglide automatic transmission, however a new three-speed manual transmission was released later in the year for V8 models only. Exterior color choices were expanded to at least five, combined with at least four interior colors. Soft-tops now came in three colors and different materials. and 12 volt electrical systems, while 6-cylinder models retained the 6-volt systems used in 1953-54. Only Pennant Blue and Polo White returned as Corvette colors. New was Corvette Copper, Gypsy Red (red/orange) and Harvest Gold. Convertible tops now came in white, dark green, or beige. red, yellow, light beige and dark beige.  “Elascofab” interiors were available.

The interior retained its floor­ mounted shifter for the Powerglide automatic and the new 3-speed manual transmission.


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lnline Six Cylinder.  Overhead valves. Cast iron block. Displacement: 235.5 cubic inches. Bore and stroke: 3.56 x 3.93 inches. Compression ratio: 8.0:1. Horsepower: 155 @ 4200 RPM. Torque: 225 @ 2800 RPM Four main bearings. Solid valve lifters. Camshaft Timing: Intake 243 degrees; Exhaust: 244 degrees; Lift: 0.4051″. Carburetor: Three (3) Carter Type YH one-barrels (#3706989) Model 2055S.

V-Eight Cylinder.  Overhead valves. Cast iron block. Displacement: 265 cubic inches. Bore and stroke: 3.75 x 3.00 inches. Compression ratio: 8.00:1. Horsepower: 195 @ 5000 RPM. Torque: 260 @ 3000 RPM. Hydraulic Lifters. Camshaft Timing: Intake 266 degrees; Exhaust 268 degrees. Lift: 0.4043″. Five main bearings. Carburetor: Rochester Four-barrel Model 7008005 or Carter Four-barrel Model WCFB 2218S.

Chassis Features

    • Wheelbase: 102.00″
    • Overall length: 167.00″
    • Front tread: 57.00″
    • Rear tread: 59.00″
    • Tires: 6.70 x 15

Body Paint Color Codes

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1955 Corvette

Corvette Copper
Gypsy Red
Harvest Gold
Pennant Blue
Polo White

1955 Chevrolet
Corvette –
Current Market

Significant Options

    • Parking brake alarm ($5.65).
    • Signal-seeking AM radio ($145.15).
    • Windshield washer ($11.85).
    • Heater ($91.40).
    • White sidewall tires

Power Train Options

    • Automatic transmission with floor shift was standard.
    • Mid-year, the Chevrolet 3-speed manual transmission was an added option for the V-8.

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