1981 Chevrolet Corvette User Reviews

1981 Chevrolet Corvette Review Ratings

  • Review your car

Average Ratings from 19 reviews

  • Performance:4.5 out of 5 stars4.5 out of 5 stars4.5 out of 5 stars4.5 out of 5 stars4.5 out of 5 stars 4.5 / 5
  • Appearance:4.8 out of 5 stars4.8 out of 5 stars4.8 out of 5 stars4.8 out of 5 stars4.8 out of 5 stars 4.8 / 5
  • Build Quality:3.9 out of 5 stars3.9 out of 5 stars3.9 out of 5 stars3.9 out of 5 stars3.9 out of 5 stars 3.9 / 5
  • Overall: 4.6 out of 5 stars4.6 out of 5 stars4.6 out of 5 stars4.6 out of 5 stars4.6 out of 5 stars 4.6 / 5

Review Highlights Click to filter reviews below

PROS
"ride" 7 reviews
"power" 4 reviews
"reliable car" 3 reviews
"part" 3 reviews
"speed" 3 reviews
CONS
"fuel economy" 4 reviews
"ride" 2 reviews

User Reviews

Displaying 1 - 10 of 19 1981 Chevrolet Corvette reviews.

dpanzerman writes:
1981 Chevrolet Corvette Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
5

Pros

Beatiful curves, timeless styling....she'll be your best friend

Cons

Don't drive if you are shy, and don't want to talk to people or be stared at longingly!

dpanzerman
185

1981 Corvette — Sharks are the BEST! Cost of ownership is low, these cars are reliable...and every single nut and bolt is available Fun factor is off the charts, you get more stares and longling glances is a Shark...that you will ever get in 99% of the cars out there. Quality of the car itself matters...anything between $17000- 25000 these cars wont let you down...buy a $4000 beater...well its gonna be expensive, but gorgeous when you restore it. Performance...stock not so great....good news...its a chevy small block.....it's cheap and easy to make it stupid fast. Also, the chassis and engine bay was designed for a big block...yeah you can go that route too! A multitude of performance parts are available, race tuned suspensions, upgrade brakes, everything. The only cars with more tuning stuff available (and then its a tie) are Camaros and Mustangs.

16 of 16 people found this review helpful.
Is this helpful? Yes | No
Corvette
Looking for a Used Corvette in your area?
CarGurus has 11,063 nationwide Corvette listings starting at $3,900.
ZIP:
Chris10974 writes:
1981 Chevrolet Corvette Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
5

Pros

amazing looks, handling and quality

Cons

not good on gas

145

Amazing Car — this car is a gorgeus car and its performance was allmost amazing, the turning was almost on a dime,the acceleration was the best i have ever seen. the quality on the car was good its an almost solid car, it was vary fun to drive. this car is not that grate on gas.

12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
Is this helpful? Yes | No
Moe writes:
1981 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
5
Moe
145

My First And Not My Last Corvette — After wrecking up my dependable 1991 Miata I decided to buy a newer and larger car. That promise lasted until I saw this beautiful 1981 Corvette. It was all yellow (one of only a few thousand made that year) it had a stick and looked almost new. I bought it a few days later and I still find reasons to drive it every day. It has been in ths shop often however. I warn all new buyers 'origional parts' may sound good in the sales speach but when you are buying an old car that means parts means some slouch didn't bother with regular service and saftey issues. All of those nice origional parts will be worn and will need replacing quickly. For me it was u joints, front and rear brakes and a master cyl. The power window motor is shot, that is small but pricey. The shocks are qustionable and I have a leak in my windsheild and the idol races between stall speed and light speed and nowhere in between. But as each repair gets done we all know I am getting one step closer to having a collecter's car that could still out race the new Mustangs and could out shine any car built today. It is my first Vette and if I ever do get rid of it I know it won't be my ast Vette. It's a beauty eh?

Owner for 1 years, 3 months

Miles Driven per Year:2,000

11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Is this helpful? Yes | No
MaxPowerdjx writes:
1981 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe Review
Cargo Capacity:
Family Car:
Fuel Economy:
Front Seats:
Handling:
Maintenance Cost:
Price:
Power:
Reliability:
Looks/Style:
Overall:
5

Pros

Looks. Performance. Reliability.

Cons

Gas Mileage.  Cheap Interior. Cabin Noise(with T-Tops On)

MaxPowerdjx
105

The Penultimate Shark! — The last time I owned a C3 was 1985. It was a Red on Oyster 4 speed. I was 27 and had owned the car since new but thought it was a good idea to trade it for the new fuel injected 1985 Corvette. Bad idea. Like all 85 Vettes, it was terrible. So recently I got the fever and decided to get a 3rd Generation one more time before I die. So I started searching until I found one at a reasonable price in decent condition. And I did luck out. 81 one is the Penultimate Shark, and in my opinion the last year of the C3 to buy. 82 with the "Cease Fire Injection" system should be avoided unless a previous owner has replaced the engine. 81 has only the ignition timing controlled by a computer system. It's still a Carb system so you can replace the Rochester with a Holley or other choice. Nothing looks like the C3. The best looking car in American history I say. The 3rd gens ride isn't for anyone who is opposed to feeling every pebble on the road. The interior isn't the quietest either. And the interior is also pretty cheap material, although I do love the deep dish seats. And in 81 the driver's seat was power adjustable! The car while a VERY thirsty beast is very reliable. The engine if you change the oil regularly and do all the other normal maintenance will run forever. Chevy small block 350's are that good. The Transmissions on the Vettes of this era(say 78-81) are also durable and reliable. Mine is a automatic. Sticks are a tough find since of the 40 plus thousand made only one in about 8 in 81 were manuals. Only one in 10 of the nearly 42 thousand in 1980. It is listed at 190HP, but it seems to have much more. I had a Grand Prix GTP previous and it's 230HP was not nearly this quick or fast. It's pure FUN and even the most jaded ass wipes in their BMWs and Benz will stare at you with envious eyes. In this you are not a Sheep in the flock or just another Lemming packed into a shinny metal box. No way. You is wrapped in fiberglass!! Parts are easy to find and reasonable in price(although these days what is reasonable can be debated). So if you want to have fun driving again. Reconnect with your lost youth. Feed your mid life crisis. Or just want to dare to be different, find ye an 81, or a 1980, 79 even. The Sharks from 79-81 were the best. and from 80 - 81 the "Coke Bottle" Vette as they became known have it all. I would not lie to you. May tease you from time to time but I try not to lie on such serious Corvette matters.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Is this helpful? Yes | No
Neil writes:
1981 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
5

Pros

Power and handling.

Cons

Gas guzzler!

125

Get One If You Can Afford One Now. — Classic Power, handling, and torque. Limited capaciity and leg room, but a "Chick magnet"! One of Chevy's best models for the time. Best value for price. Definately a fun can to drive and comfortable for the driver and one passenger.

Primary Use: Commuting to work

8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Is this helpful? Yes | No
Rob2736 writes:
1981 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
5

Pros

She's just so sleak!

Cons

She's a bit short on power.

105

81 Corvette — Performance - I love that it's carb... but it's a bit low on acceleration. Build Quality - Most are pretty impressed with how it rides. Appearance - Nothing beats the 81 look. Gas Mileage - It's a Corvette.. are you really worried about gas mileage? Is this car FUN? It's a Corvette... DAMN STRAIGHT IT IS!!!

7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Is this helpful? Yes | No
Dave writes:
1981 Chevrolet Corvette Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
4

Pros

Great power, Killer looks, and it's a Vette!

Cons

Seems to always be needing something. It'll cost you a lot if you can't repair it yourself.

85

You're 18 And Drive A Corvette? — This car all in all is a great car. I bought the car for $6000 in 07, and I've probably got about that much into it, putting me right at about $12,000. Since then, I've put in a new 350 crate engine, put on a new hood, rear bumper, quarter panel, transmission, 2 different exhausts, new suspension parts, and a bunch of other goodies. It runs like all hell. It's got a .30 over 350 (355), 10.1 compression, good flowing heads, aluminum intake, 750cfm carb, and longtube headers into sidepipes. It moves damn well. It has independent rear suspension and coils up front, so it handles nicely, too. It does seem, however, that I'm always fixing something, but then again, it is 27 years old.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Is this helpful? Yes | No
mike7171956 writes:
1981 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
5

Pros

fun to drive

mike7171956
65

Na — i love my vet it is in great shape never seen the rain runs like a clock. it is white with red int. wish it was a 4 speed but had to get auto so my wife can drive it too. we have alot of fun in the summer with it.

Primary Use: Family transportation

4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Is this helpful? Yes | No
a68cord writes:
1981 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe Review
Accessories:
Battery Life:
Brakes:
Cargo Capacity:
Daily Commute:
Family Car:
Fuel Economy:
Front Seats:
Handling:
Interior Noise:
Interior Space:
Maintenance Cost:
Parking:
Price:
Power:
Reliability:
Ride Comfort:
Safety:
Snow/Ice:
Looks/Style:
Visibility:
Warranty:
Weight:
Overall:
4

Pros

Great looks , Easy to get parts, Everyone can work on this car. America`s true sports car, It is what I perceive my idea of what a sports car should be in a specific time.

Cons

Gas consumption, People want to touch it ! , No bumpers , Very bright inside on a sunny day (a cap cures that). As I get older , getting in and out is harder.

a68cord
65

Everyone....everyone ! ....examines A Vette In The Garage (4 Year Owner). — First of all I love the looks of my car. I haven't gone on any log trips yet ( more than 3 hours) ,but with the power seat it adjust so that I have never found it to be uncomfortable. I have had 3 classic cars (Cord, Porsche, Corvette) and this is the easiest and least expensive to maintain. As far as performance ,braking and handling, there are newer cars that do it better. But I stopped driving cars to the edge in my thirties. Being a older car I have gone through it completely to stop leaks, rattles and to be sure its safe in every possible way .. That costs, but it also removes almost all doubt of disappointment. When I go to my toy after its sat for 5 days or 5 months (winter) . I`m good to go . Lastly ,every person who enjoys cars should own something they wished they could have had when they were younger. House payments , wife , kids came first . Now its my turn. I have had this itch since I saw the 1958 corvette , then it was the 63 through 67 and the 1978 thought 1982. Cost factored into the purchase. A wise man told me " Buy what you can afford ... then multiply that by at least two ". Boy was he right on . So in closing , I would say put a list together of your top five choices. Check your funds to spend. Give yourself at least five years if its even slightly a project. Then enjoy talking with people about your car .Going different places for both the drive and the destination. And hearing some weird comments.

Primary Use: Sport/fun (spirited driving, track racing, off-roading, etc.)

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Is this helpful? Yes | No
David writes:
1981 Chevrolet Corvette Review
Back Seats:
Cargo Capacity:
Family Car:
Fuel Economy:
Front Seats:
Handling:
Maintenance Cost:
Price:
Power:
Reliability:
Looks/Style:
Overall:
5

Pros

Simple and easy to work on.  Gets looks and compliments everywhere.  Handles great and is very fast.

Cons

Rattles a lot.  Some electrical issues.

45

I Love Love Love My Shiny Red Vette — I bought this car for $4,000 a couple of years ago. It had been in a minor accident and needed a little body work up front, needed paint, and the automatic transmission was slipping. But under the hood was a very strong 383 stroker motor with Elderbrock intake, Holley 750 carb, and long tube headers. I spent a couple of weekends fixing the body work - using fiberglass body filler bought at Wal-Mart. Had the car painted at Econo-Bake for $500 and it looks darn good for what I've got in it. I bought a rebuilt TH350 transmission out of a wrecked Malibu for $125 and installed myself. I added a B&M shift improver kit ($30) to the transmission, bought the side pipes for $200 from Summit Racing and the car is perfect for me. She will smoke the tires as long as you hold the gas pedal down, looks great, and gets compliments everywhere. I absolutely love my Corvette but a car like this is not for everyone. You need the time, place, and tools to tinker and tune on this car.

Primary Use: Sport/fun (spirited driving, track racing, off-roading, etc.)

2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Is this helpful? Yes | No

Displaying 1 - 10 of 19 1981 Chevrolet Corvette reviews.

Review your car

Reviews From Other Years

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Reviews

Awesome By royal123

A true winner! Latest version of corvette brings back some of the traditional design elements of earlier models. Car is very responsive in all areas. The interior is a major step up from older mode... Read More

Stingray By LilNasty

My 1st new car & what a shock. I used to build hotrods & I thought I'd never have a new car. Wrong. The electronics on this car just obsolete almost anything else man currently makes. Direct injection... Read More

Read all 4 2014 Chevrolet Corvette reviews

2013 Chevrolet Corvette Reviews

2013 60th Anniversary Corvette. Performance, Classic Corvette Styling By MSHLH

The 2013 Grand Sport is a fantastic car with a Classic Corvette look. Tremendous acceleration, superb handling and braking. Comfortable daily driver. The Grand Sport interior is good quality with nice... Read More

Exciting, Fast, And Fun - But A Daily Driver Nonetheless! By Irene

Seating was very comfortable - acceleration, braking, excellent - handling requires attention and experience - I felt in control of the car once I realized the power - It is a BLAST to drive a Z06! T... Read More

Read all 5 2013 Chevrolet Corvette reviews

2012 Chevrolet Corvette Reviews

I Am Extremely Impressed With The Car. By wilscaal

If looking for a performance car that is also a great daily driver, you can't beat this car. For a car with 430HP the mileage of 19-24MPG is excellent. Outstanding cargo capacity with the hatch rea... Read More

2012 Corvette Gs Coupe By scole665

I dreamed about having a Corvette my whole life. I came from somewhat meager beginnings and it finally happened a few years ago. It was like dream. I almost cried upon delivery. It a gorgeous car that... Read More

Read all 6 2012 Chevrolet Corvette reviews

2011 Chevrolet Corvette Reviews

Only Drivin To Car Shows By tashkentzoo

This is an outstanding example of a Grand Sport. The color which is Supersonic Blue draws your attention. In fact, I've been told it's one of the most attractive colors of that model year. I get a lot... Read More

My Daily Race Car By mgheberger

This car is stock and kicks the butts of other Z06's with modifications!! This car, with one simple performance Dyno Tune is running stronger than all other stock Z06 C6 Corvettes!! I've had four Z06'... Read More

Read all 8 2011 Chevrolet Corvette reviews

2010 Chevrolet Corvette Reviews

Best Vette Yet By MB119

I waited for years for Chevrolet to produce a C6 wide body convertible. The 2010 Grand Sport was the first C6 offering. The look of this car leaves no question as to what it is......Corvette. A pe... Read More

Loved It By vettedude69

This car is a legend. The best bang you can get for your buck. This is the kind of car the kids give you thumbs up when you pass them. Kind of car you hear coming from down the street. Read More

Read all 18 2010 Chevrolet Corvette reviews

People researching a 1981 Chevrolet Corvette contacted a dealer about

LeRoy1706's 1981 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe, exterior
Chevrolet Corvette
53% of the time
Chevrolet Camaro
4% of the time
Ford Mustang
3% of the time
Corvette
Looking for a Used Corvette in your area?
CarGurus has 11,063 nationwide Corvette listings starting at $3,900.
ZIP: