Juan's been on my mind for a few days now, ever since I wrote this Bring a Trailer piece on a '90 Corvette ZR-1. You see, back when I met him about 13 years ago, he had a visually identical black on black '87 C4 with updated square taillight rear valance. Juan's car was a base L98 model with an automatic, but it looked and sounded the business. I remember once teasing him about not driving a manual, and the car being a big poser-mobile - his reply was "sticks aren't good for road head, though!". I'm paraphrasing, actually, as he went into quite a bit more graphic detail on the presumed incompatibility of gear changing and moving sex acts.
|ergonomics optimized for road head|
C4's are trashy, sleazy things. I've read that even hardtops will banana with both doors open while on a lift, making it impossible for them to shut until lowered back onto solid ground. They have interiors, as aptly described by one BaT commenter, with "fit and finish suggesting that they were assembled by blind children in UNICEF hospitals." They have notoriously bad electrical systems, weak brakes, insufficient engine cooling, and aren't all that powerful in base form. They place grip and grunt over delicacy and adjustability, flash over substance. They're rude, crude and obviously built to a price.
Yet despite all these glaring shortcomings, the C4 somehow remains a charming, unique and cool car. I'd love to own one, but I can't really say why. Perhaps flawed cars, like the flawed people in our lives, are simply the most interesting. If the soul is nourished through struggle, and character defined by the personal challenges and limitations one overcomes, then by those measures their can't be many cars more soulful or full of character than a C4 Corvette.
Juan proudly called his the "Whorevette", and it was as if God himself had designed and built that car just for him.
Love you man, hope all is well up in ol' East L.A.
|in reality, quite a sophisticated car for its time|