1998 Chevy Corvette Review

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List Price Estimate:$3,267 - $7,216
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Edmunds' Expert Review

  • World class performance. Amazing cargo capacity. Easy to drive.
  • Interior materials are not world class.

Vehicle overview

More than 40 years after the 1953 Corvette debuted, Chevrolet introduced the fifth-generation Corvette for 1997. The C5 almost didn't happen. Originally scheduled for release in 1993, the Corvette was killed for a short time before performance zealots within General Motors resuscitated the project and made the new car a reality.

Pushrod power continues, in the form of a reworked 5.7-liter V8 engine dubbed the LS1. Horsepower is 345 at 5,600 rpm, while torque measures 350 foot-pounds at 4,400 rpm. The result? Equipped with the standard four-speed automatic transmission, the Corvette will hit 60 mph in a shade over five seconds. Opt for the six-speed manual transmission and you'll cut less than half a second off the trap time. To help reign the power in on slippery surfaces, acceleration slip regulation (aka traction control) is standard equipment. EPA mileage figures are phenomenal for a high-powered sports car; the Corvette will return 28 mpg on the highway with the manual tranny.

Four-wheel disc antilock brakes keep stopping distances short with larger rotors than previous Corvettes. Front tires are 17 inches in diameter, and rears are a whopping 18 inches across, which contributes to an excellent .93g of road grip. The rubber stays planted well too, thanks to a fully independent four-wheel short/long-arm height-adjustable suspension.

Body panels are still composed of a material other than metal, though no longer fiberglass. Sheet molded compound wraps around an ultra-stiff structure that features a full-length perimeter frame with tubular steel side rails. The windshield frame is aluminum, and the instrument panel is attached directly to a beefy cross member designed to reduce noise and vibration. A sandwich composite floor with a lightweight balsa wood core damps noise and vibration while making the floor exceptionally stiff.

Inside, a dashboard with real analog gauges and intuitive radio and climate controls greets passengers. Luggage space beneath the coupe's rear hatch glass is an incredible 25 cubic feet, made possible with the use of dual mid-ship mounted fuel tanks that are snuggled within the Corvette's structure. The car feels more airy inside, thanks to a narrower door sill and taller height combined with a low cowl.

Yes, the Corvette is an outstanding effort and competes favorably with the best in the class. Unfortunately, to our eyes, it doesn't look like a million bucks. Long, low and lean, the Corvette is certainly attractive. We take issue, however, with the thick truncated tail and the odd-looking air scoops for the front brakes. Other critics have complained of derivative styling cues and the lack of chrome-finished exhaust tips. Still, the Corvette's new shape will wear well into the next century, particularly in convertible format.

Don't let the fact that the C5 will swallow two golf bags sway you into thinking this a gentrified sporting coupe. The 1998 Corvette is among the best true sports car your money can buy.

1998 Highlights

Two fresh colors are available, but the available convertible model is the big news. Equipped with a manual-folding top, a hard tonneau that extends along the rear wall of the passenger compartment and a trunk that holds golf bags. Lower-powered airbags are not available on the Corvette.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 1998 Chevrolet Corvette.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

5 out of 5 stars
Long term owner
Lynn Hondo,01/21/2006
2dr Coupe
I bought vehicle new in 1998. It has given me many years of almost trouble free performance. I've only had two problems; a sensor in the active handling system failed, which was replaced under warranty, and I encountered a steering wheel lockup. There was a recall for the steering wheel lock up that I had not taken care of, so I was somewhat at fault for having an untimely lock up. I've read where a number of people have had the lock up. In my case the car was in a parking lot, I got in to leave and the steering wheel would not unlock. Had to tow into dealer for fix. The car is quick, and hard acceleration is a real kick. My driving style results in mileage of 24 miles per gallon.
4 out of 5 stars
C5 problem
Dennis Mulholland,09/30/2016
2dr Convertible
Great handling, great power, fun to drive in the canyons, great gas mileage for a car with this much power.......what's not to like? Most all c5 owners have had "column lock failure " and had to call a tow truck at least once to get it to the dealership and usually a hefty repair bill. The solution may be as simple as a bad or slightly discharged battery, check it first. And, a permanent repair harness is available in the aftermarket for about $50. Get the harness before it happens, leaving you stranded. Only takes a few minutes to install.
5 out of 5 stars
Loving Life After Divorce
2dr Coupe
Bought my first Vette at 25 yrs old for 22K. Loving the car in every sense. The seat of the pants feel is amazing and other the a few mechanical problems she is alot fun to cruise in. Headlight gear bad at 42K, Turn signal bulb bad 3 times in 20K, coolant overflow tank replaced at 46K, Oil pressure sensor replaced at 43K, belt tensioner at 58K and battery at 55K. I push this car like a sports car should be pushed and at 65K I can still muster up a 13.4 @104mph at the track. Only mods are a catback exhaust and Blackwing Intake. GM keep up the good work and I cannot wait to see what the 2006 Z06 can put down for a 1/4 mile time!!!
4.88 out of 5 stars
So Far, So Good
Mark Christ,02/03/2007
2dr Convertible
I have dreamed about owning a red Corvette convertable since I was a young boy. At the age of 53 and after selling my parent's home when they passed away, I finally had enough disposable income to purchase the car of my dreams. I think of my parents almost every time I drive the car, I'm sure they are smiling down at me, knowing how 'Corvette crazy' I've always been. I live in the upper midwest so I only have about 6-7 months a year to drive it so I do so as much as possible. The car had 34,000 miles on it when I bought it and in the 18 months since I've owned it I have put on another 15,000 miles. Except for a bad O2 sensor and an ocassional check engine light glitch it has performed well


IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 1998 Chevrolet Corvette

Used 1998 Chevrolet Corvette Overview

The Used 1998 Chevrolet Corvette is offered in the following submodels: Corvette Coupe, Corvette Convertible. Available styles include 2dr Coupe, and 2dr Convertible. The Used 1998 Chevrolet Corvette comes with rear wheel drive.

What's a good price on a Used 1998 Chevrolet Corvette?

Price comparisons for Used 1998 Chevrolet Corvette trim styles:

  • The Used 1998 Chevrolet Corvette Base is priced between $16,990 and$16,990 with odometer readings between 67296 and67296 miles.

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 1998 Chevrolet Corvettes are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 1998 Chevrolet Corvette for sale near. There are currently 1 used and CPO 1998 Corvettes listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $16,990 and mileage as low as 67296 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 1998 Chevrolet Corvette.

Can't find a used 1998 Chevrolet Corvettes you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Chevrolet Corvette for sale - 6 great deals out of 10 listings starting at $14,371.

Find a used Chevrolet for sale - 1 great deals out of 24 listings starting at $19,568.

Find a used certified pre-owned Chevrolet Corvette for sale - 2 great deals out of 17 listings starting at $17,712.

Find a used certified pre-owned Chevrolet for sale - 4 great deals out of 13 listings starting at $10,435.

Should I lease or buy a 1998 Chevrolet Corvette?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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Check out Chevrolet Corvette lease specials