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Corvette Odd-Ball: Is the “Grumpy” Corvette for real?

Question: Is the “Grumpy” Corvette for real?"Grumpy's Toy" Corvette at the K. C. Kerbeck tent at the Corvettes at Carlisle Show, August 2007.

Answer: I’m going to make a broad assumption that everyone reading this knows who Bill “Grumpy” Jenkins is. If not, we’re going to have to suspend your drivers license for a month while you take Muscle Car and Nostalgia Drag Racing Sensitivity Training Classes. There’ll be a test at the end.

But seriously folks, Bill Jenkins is a true living legend, right up there with Zora Arkus-Duntov, A.J. Foyt, Don Garlits, and lots more. Da’ Grump doesn’t live too far from the Carlisle Fairgrounds – just up the PA Turnpike a ways. It seemed that the bright guys from K. C. Kerbeck, in Atlantic City, thought it would be a lot of fun to dress up an out of the box, $44,950 Corvette with a few official Corvette accessory items, add some stripes, letter the car with “Grumpy” and “JENKINS/KERBECK” graphics. Then, to really send up the flag, they got the grumpy one himself to come by on Saturday, sign autographs, and grunt through endless bench racing stories.

Kerbeck wanted to celibrate the Corvette’s new “base” engine, the 430-horsepower, all-aluminum LS3. Remember when the all-aluminum ZL-1 seemed exotic? Now “all-aluminum” is stock. And that 430-horsepower figure is “net” horsepower. Back in the golden days, power ratings were based on “gross” dynamometer reading. That is, readings without a fan, mufflers, alternator, power steering pump, etc. That means that if the famous old ’67 – ’69 L-71 427/435 engine (the solid-lifter version with the 3×2 carb setup and the triangle air cleaner), the net power rating would have been somewhere in the high 300-range. But unlike the old L-71 beasty, ther LS3 is so trackable and easy to drive, your Mom could drive to the flower shoppe in your Vette.

The F.C. Kerbeck guys also added the official Corvette accessory stripes, wheels, and rear spoiler. So, to answer the initial question, was the Grumpy Corvete “real” or not… yes, it’s a real car, but no,it’s not for sale.

But I’m sure that if it was for sale, someone would have bought it.

Too cool!

PS – Don’t let that “Grumpy” thing fool you. He’s a pussy cat.

"Grumpy" being grumpy.

“Grumpy” being grumpy.

Bill Jenkins’ 1968 Pro Stock Camaro. At the 1970 NHRA Winternationals, Grumpy won the very first official Pro Stock  national event win over the Sox & Martin’s Pro Stock Hemi Cuda.

I have a HUGE collection of over 435 Corvette art prints that cover every production Corvette from ’53 to ’09. I’ve also covered almost every important Corvette show car, prototype, engineering study, and MANY famous Corvette race cars. You can check’m out here… http://www.IllustratedCorvetteSeries.com


One Response to “Corvette Odd-Ball: Is the “Grumpy” Corvette for real?”

  1. I have a large collection of Zora Duntov materials, and am looking for various Duntov art prints


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