The 1957 Corvette Continued to Improve in Both Speed and Handling Departments
The 1957 Corvette saw little changes to the outside and really it didn’t need any changes as the 1956 improvements were working just fine. What did change for the super car in 1957 however was yet again more speed and better handling. The biggest gain however came with the introduction of a new technology called fuel injection.
The 283 V-8 that Chevy was using at the time was fast becoming a very revered engine and while many of GM’s competitors were fast making new and improved engines, the Chevy boys just kept figuring out new ways to pump more ponies out of what they had. This came by the way of what was to be known as fuel injection.
Back in the 50s there was little known or done with the technology of fuel injection, but as other name plates began to use the technology Chevy was forced to throw together a team of engineers to work on the new project. The results were trying at times but when Chevy got it right, they got it right in a big way.
The 1957 Corvette already had improved upon its horsepower output with a four barrel carburetor helping the 283 belch out 220 horsepower and this was improved upon even more with twin four barrel carburetors that saw the car get between 245 to 270 horsepower. But the biggest development for the year was that of the ‘Ramjet’ fuel injection system which gave the 283 cubic inch engine 283 horsepower. This ‘fuelie’ helped Chevy hit the coveted mark of one horsepower per cubic inch and they did not miss the opportunity to let everyone know about their achievement.
Also new to the 1967 Corvette was the new four-speed transmission which had been sought by enthusiasts since the car had first been brought to production. This new transmission was basically just the typical three-speed of the past with the reverse gear being moved to the tail shaft housing thus allowing the fourth forward gear to be added. This was complimented by Chevy’s optional Positraction which helped drivers get the most out of their engines and gearboxes.
To combat the complaints of the poor handling and break deficiencies of the past models, Chevy answered the call by offering the RPO 684 package. This package included a heavy duty racing suspension, Positraction, a thicker anti-sway bar, a faster steering ratio, and ceramic-metallic brake linings that featured finned ventilated brake drums. Add this package to the Ramjet 283 fuelie and you had a car that was darn near ready to be driven off of the showroom floor and right on to the racetrack.
Finally it all seemed to be coming together at a rather rapid pace for Chevy. The 1957 Corvette proved that the car maker could not only be tops at the sports car game but also let the car maker flex its muscles just a bit in the technology game as well. Sales for the 1957 Corvette stayed steady and the car gained much acclaim from the critics and the enthusiast that seemed to be multiplying by the year.