The other after the jump with a bit of story.
I had to go to Kentucky for Christmas festivities and I managed to convince the family a stop at the National Corvette Museum would be worthwhile. It was definitely a pretty sweet experience and the only thing I wish had been different would have been the plant being open so I could have taken a tour. They had everything from a few VERY low production number C1's to a Lingenfelter C6 that can do 0-200mph in less than 20 seconds. I was impressed with the lengths taken to show the history, technology, and design that has gone into the Corvette since the beginning and the fact that it wasn't just one big sales pitch.
The picture above is of a Vette that GM put a V12 in for some reason, definitely cool to see projects like this that actually came from the factory instead of someone's garage. Almost all of the cars in the museum are actually privately owned and on loan from owners all around North America. There was another C5 Vette in the same room as the V12 that was fully outfitted in offroad garb, rally lights, roofrack, spare tire, and rock deflectors included(no pic, sorry guys). One of the things that really surprised me about the cars there was the fact that most of them weren't in perfectly poised and polished condition, they had been driven and you could tell it. The race cars, including the 24 Hours of Sebring winning Vette, all had rubber on the fenders, battle wounds on the bumpers, and pieces of old tear aways on the windshields. The rally-spec Vette even had broken rock deflectors, chipped paint, limb scratches, and a cracked windshield from an enthusiastic rock.
Of all the things I saw in the museum, the most impressive and surprising thing was a picture on the wall. I'd seen the picture before in articles, and even though it was in the prototype section with many other Corvette ideas that never made it to production, I would never have thought I would find a picture in the actual Corvette Museum. It was the picture below.
The interesting thing about this particular picture is that while this is the GM prototype known as the Aerovette, and got canned in favor of selling DeTomaso Pantera's at Lincoln dealerships, this isn't the first form of this particular car. It was billed as a successor to the Corvette and you would think it should be in the museum, except, this particular picture was taken after none other than John DeLorean revived the project and made a full steelbody version(one of only 3 Vettes, prototype or not, made with a steel body) that used two GM prototype rotary engines sourced from a Vega project that had been modified into a working 4 rotor that was transversely mounted and put out 460hp, did I mention it was mid-engine? While this concept is by far one of the coolest things I've seen, I would never have thought such blasphemy would grace the wall of THE Nation Corvette Museum.
I highly recommend that anyone that is happening by Bowling Green KY stop and take a walk around the Museum, we spent just under 2 hours there and got our fill of reading and seeing. Definitely worth stopping to stretch your legs.