The 1959 Corvette is almost identical to its older sibling from the previous production line. The few changes included a toned-down styling on the front and rear design and less chrome running through the car when compared to the 1958 model. The instrument panel changed a bit, with the gauge glass convexed to reduce the glare problem that riders reported in previous years. All tachometers offered redline and “safe limit” indicators in an effort to save drivers from blown engines during zippy Saturday drives.
The 1959 model also added a small storage bin next to the door grab handles. The base model Corvette was a three-speed manual transmission, but a T-shift, four speed was optional for an additional $188.30. The shifter required the driver to pull the stick up to shift into reverse as a way to prevent reverse-gear engagement while shifting the forward gears. Chevrolet also began offering a black interior in its Corvette in 1959.
Some 9,670 Corvettes were made that year and they sold for a base price of $3,875. They offered a 230-horsepower engine and convertible. Engine options ran up to 290 horsepower for a premium cost. Cars came in colors with names like Snowcrest White, Roman Red, Tuxedo Black, Frost Blue, Crown Sapphire, Classic Cream, and Inca Silver. They sell for between $60,000 and $100,000 in collector circles.