Wikimedia Commons // Public Domain
Wikimedia Commons // Public Domain

10 Fast Facts About the First Corvette

Wikimedia Commons // Public Domain
Wikimedia Commons // Public Domain

Happy birthday to the Corvette, which turns 63 today! The classic sports car may be approaching retirement age, but it doesn't look like it will be driving off into the sunset anytime soon. In honor of the big day, check out these 10 facts about the OG Corvette.

1. THE C1 DEBUTED AT THE GENERAL MOTORS MOTORAMA ON JANUARY 17, 1953.

The first Corvette, now known as C1, made its debut as a concept vehicle at the General Motors auto show in New York City. Held at the Waldorf-Astoria and featuring dancers, singers, and an orchestra, the 1953 Motorama also marked the debuts of the Buick Wildcat, the Oldsmobile Starfire, and the Cadillac Orleans.

2. IT’S NAMED AFTER A SMALL WARSHIP.

Though it was originally called "Project Opel," the board expressed interest in a “C” name for the alliterative effect. So Chevrolet PR exec Myron Scott grabbed a dictionary and started flipping through. When he ran across the word “corvette,” which refers to a fast ship that’s easy to maneuver, Scott knew he was onto something. He was right—the name was quickly approved (after rounds and rounds of previous attempts).

3. PRODUCTION WAS LIMITED TO JUST 300—BUT THEY DIDN'T SELL.

To create demand and an aura of exclusivity, GM first marketed the C1 to VIP customers only. Unfortunately, the plan backfired, and they didn't even sell through the first run. Even though availability was opened up the following year, the public was still lukewarm on the car, and it was nearly discontinued.

4. THEY DIDN’T ACTUALLY “ROLL” OFF OF THE ASSEMBLY LINE.

The first Corvettes had problems starting due to electrical grounding problems due to the fiberglass body. So instead of "rolling" off the assembly line, the first Corvettes had to be manually pushed off.

5. YOU COULD GET IT IN ANY COLOR, AS LONG AS YOU WANTED WHITE.

There’s an old saying that you could get the Ford Model-T in any color you want, as long as it’s black. The first Corvette was similar—but “any color” was Polo White, with a “Sportsman Red” interior and a black top.

6. OF COURSE, IT WAS FAST.

The car lived up to the "fast" reputation of its seafaring predecessor: It could go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 11 seconds, which was pretty impressive for 1953. And for the speed demons, the first Corvette could max out at 110 miles per hour. Here's one in action at the Top Gear Test Track:

7. IT CAME WITH A FEW AMENITIES ...

Whitewall tires and chromed-mesh stone guards made the car look extra sporty, and all 300 production models came with AM radio and a heater.

8. ... BUT IT ALSO LACKED A FEW AMENITIES.

There were no exterior door handles. But that wasn't really a problem, because there were also no windows—just plastic curtains.

9. EVEN SO, THE '53 CORVETTE WAS DEFINITELY A WORTHWHILE INVESTMENT.

The base price of the 1953 Corvette was $3498. That’s $31,473.62 today—but if you still have a 1953 Corvette in decent shape, it’s worth far more than the original sticker price. In 2006, the third one to ever be produced sold for a record $1.06 million.

10. THE CORVETTE HOLDS THE RECORD FOR LONG-TIME PRODUCTION.

Starting with the C1, the Corvette holds the title for the longest-running, continuously produced passenger car.The longest-running vehicle of any type also happens to belong to Chevy: It’s the Chevrolet Suburban.

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The Best Way to Fight Sky-High Gas Prices This Summer
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Thanks to crude oil prices and increasing demand, it's getting very expensive to operate a motor vehicle in the U.S. In Connecticut and New York, gas prices have hit over $3 a gallon. According to AAA, the national average—which fluctuates on a daily basis—is hovering around $2.90. As a result, motorists might spend up to $200 more fueling up in 2018.

Whether that will translate into fewer people taking road trips this summer remains to be seen. But you don't necessarily have to be at the total mercy of Big Oil every time you pull up to the pump. While credit card programs and other discount offers can shave pennies off a refuel, it's what you do once you leave the station that has the greatest impact on fuel economy.

Automotive expert Ron Montoya of Edmunds, an online automotive information hub, spoke with NBC News recently and suggested that drivers can anticipate significant savings based on one simple rule: drive less aggressively.

Depending on the model, cars tend to maximize fuel economy around 50 miles per hour (mph). When a car joins the racing flow of traffic on a highway, accelerating from 55 mph to 75 mph, fuel consumption speeds up right along with it, shaving up to 15 miles per gallon (mpg) off the vehicle's fuel efficiency. Even going 65 mph will eat up four to eight mpg more. Overall, the act of threading through traffic by speeding, braking, and rapidly accelerating is responsible for a 15 to 30 percent reduction in gas mileage. It's like paying 20 cents more per gallon for every 5 mph driven over a cruising speed of 50 mph.

In addition to maintaining a moderate speed, road trippers may also want to consider leaving cargo off the roof—it increases drag—and sticking with regular unleaded. Most cars don't need premium, even if it's "recommended" on car doors. Only use more expensive fuel if the manufacturer labels it "required."

As for those credit card deals? They vary by issuer, but paying cash usually results in a 10 to 15 cent savings per gallon because gas stations don't have to cover transaction fees. If you don't normally carry a lot of cash, consider paying with a debit card—but make sure the station will treat it as cash, not credit.

[h/t NBC News]

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LinkedIn Now Lets You Search for Jobs by Commute Time
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A long commute can have a major effect on your health and happiness. Studies regularly find that the longer it takes for people to get to work, especially if they’re driving, the less satisfied they are with their lives in general, and polls suggest that many people would happily take a lower salary in exchange for a shorter ride to work. You can put that latter theory to the test with LinkedIn’s new job search tool, which lets you look for open positions based on potential commute times, according to Lifehacker.

The new “See Your Commute” feature on LinkedIn will let you enter your address to see how long it would take to get to the office in a particular job listing by car, public transit, or walking. It will also let you set your preferred commute time as a preference so that when you’re searching for openings, the results won’t include companies that would require a longer commute than you’re willing to undertake. You can set your commute preferences for between 15 and 120 minutes and factor in traffic based on what time you typically start your commute.

Screenshots of LinkedIn's mobile commute-search function
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How you get to the office every day (and how long it takes you) may be as relevant to your happiness at work as the job requirements or the size of the company. If a terrible commute can make you feel worse about your job, it makes sense to hunt for your new workplace based in part on how long it will take you to get there every day.

The feature seems to only be available on the LinkedIn mobile app for now. Test the feature yourself within LinkedIn’s job search portal here.

[h/t Lifehacker]

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