Video: In-Depth Retro Review of 1984 C4 Corvette

MotorWeek’s retro reviews give us a unique, and for the most part, unadulterated look at cars that were new at the time. They haven’t been influenced by decades worth of opinions and videos on these cars, so we get to see the 1984 Corvette through the eyes of someone who was seeing it for the first time. These videos are usually pretty brief and to the point, but this one goes deep into the ins and outs of the 1984 C4.

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1984 represented the major overhaul that started the C4 generation of the Corvette that ran through 1996. These models were quite a different car than before as it was the first totally restyled Corvette since 1968, and first totally re-engineered Corvette since 1963. Of course, it maintained the same two-seater design, rear wheel drive platform, and fiberglass makeup.

The one really interesting takeaway that we can relate to today is that while decisions were being made about the C4, they had conversations and debates about whether or not to keep it a front engine, rear-wheel drive car, sound familiar? We’ll soon see the mid-engine change in the C8, but the C4 could have actually been the first if the engineers had more faith in it back then. However, in 1977, the decision was made to stick to the same formula.

Because of how much work went into the redesign of the C4, there was no 1983 model Corvette, the 1984 followed the 1982 after a short hiatus. The result is a slightly shorter, but wider and lighter car with a sleek and modern appearance.

It wasn’t in 1984 that the famous LT engine was introduced, so this year model only got the carryover engine from 1982, the L83. A slight upgrade to the L98 would take place in 1985, but it wouldn’t be until 1992 when the LT1 engine was introduced.

That’s not to say the 1984 C4 wasn’t a triumph of its own right, the car represented a clean break from previous generations and a bold move into the future of the American sports car.

Elizabeth Puckett is a seasoned writer and hardcore gearhead. She was born with motor oil in her blood and a passion for everything that goes fast, especially if it’s also loud and smells of race gas. When her own LS build doesn’t consume her time, she is happy to go visit local performance shops, or do research on interesting industry news.

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