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Still Rolling: Wrenching on and falling in love with Alex, a 1981 Chevrolet Corvette

This C3 lives in South Texas where it is a daily driver for a young Corvette enthusiast.

Photo by Jesus Garcia

You've heard of Mustang Sally, but what about C3 Alex? It may not be a Stingray but this yellow 1981 Chevrolet Corvette C3 has six figures worth of sentimental value that's been collecting interest for over 20 years.

Twenty-two-year old Evelyn Cortez has had Alex as her only means of transportation since she was a senior year in high school. Even though she has only been behind Alex's wheel for four years, the C3 has been a part of Cortez's life since birth.

You could say that she grew into this Corvette.

1981 Chevrolet Corvette Must of the Corvette is original.Photo by Jesus Garcia

During Cortez's childhood, she watched the Corvette evolve from a salvaged titled basket case to a T-topless, tire smoking, DIY hotrod.

Little is known as to how the 1980's treated this particular 'Vette. Cortez's father, a long-haul truck driver, found the car collecting dust in the corner of a freight warehouse somewhere in Kansas in the early 1990s. The car was in really bad shape with no interior, body damage, and a complication with its paperwork.

While it's true story has been lost to history, it is likely that this C3 was stolen early in its life. After being written off by the insurance company, the car was probably found and given a salvage title – a common practice for dealing with these sorts of occurances.

Despite its complicated history and condition, the car struck a chord with Cortez's father and decided to buy the press-molded fiberglass heap and take it home.

1981 Chevrolet Corvette Cortez is hoping to change out the interior from red to black.Photo by Jesus Garcia

The Corvette took a backseat to family life when Evelyn was born in 1997, but it was never forgotten. As Cortez grew up the Corvette became a vehicle for the young Texas and her father to bond over as they worked on it during moments of opportunity.

When Cortez turned 15, the keys to the Corvette were her birthday present. The car was now hers and motivation to get it road worthy was higher than ever before.

At age 18, Cortez became the Vette-girl at school as she drove the newly road legal C3 to school during her senior year. She named the the car Alex.

Under Alex's hood is the car's original 5.7 liter 350 small block V8 with some DIY modifications to keep it on the road while staying within budget.

1981 Chevrolet Corvette The Corvette has the car's original 5.7-liter engine under its hood.Photo by Jesus Garcia

The seats are correct for the year but not the original ones.

The C3 has survived with all its original dashboard gauges and the radio still works. The only thing that doesn't work, and is very high on the must-fix list, is the air conditioning unit. Daily driving a vintage Corvette with T-tops sounds romantic up until South Texas heat comes along and makes your head feel like an egg sunny side up on a flattop grill.

1981 Chevrolet Corvette All of the car's dashboard gauges and systems are original.Photo by Jesus Garcia

Evelyn adores her Corvette for many reasons that go beyond the horizon of the obvious. The car is a family member, an older sibling, a photo album of memories, and her ambassador to the automotive hobby.

To say that Cortez loves her Corvette is an underestimate as her Instagram account (@alex_vette.c3) is dedicated to her beloved C3.

1981 Chevrolet Corvette You can follow Alex's life on Instagram at @Alex_Vette.c3.Photo by Jesus Garcia

Cortez plans to restore and paint Alex in the future, changing the body to a royal blue. This blue will be matched with a black interior. If she is able to have her way, Alex will also add a third pedal to the firewall and convert the automatic to a 5-speed manual.

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The engine bay is decorated with images of the American flag.

Photo courtesy of Karl Kustoms

A new customized 2016 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 pays tribute to members of the U.S. military. Karl Kustoms, a Chevrolet Performance retailer and custom shop, recently completed the build in partnership with Bad Boy Vettes. Nearly every panel of the Corvette has been modified to honor a military branch. Even the underside of the hood and engine bay have been artistically sprayed.

"It is a privilege to take on a custom project like this and use our skills to honor our nation's military," Clint Quesinberry, Digital Marketing Specialist. "This Memorial Day, we are proud to recognize those who served."

Karl Kustons US military 2016 Chevrolet Corvette The model started its life as a 2016 Chevy Corvette.Photo courtesy of Karl Kustoms

Unique features include detailed lettering of the words "Honor, Duty, Country", three words given an important place in military history after they were uttered by General Douglas MacArthur in 1962 at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point as part of his farewell address. There's also imagery of a U.S. Army helicopter firing at a Russian helicopter, a serviceman with a German Shepard, the U.S.S. Iowa battleship, and Arlington Cemetery stones with Medal of Honor recipients from each major conflict.

Karl Kustons US military 2016 Chevrolet Corvette Military imagery features throughout the body work.Photo courtesy of Karl Kustoms

The car was created as a full-time show car and is currently on display at the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky. It will remain there through the end of 2021 before traveling throughout the country at a variety of car events throughout 2022.

The customized Corvette is also a contender for the 2021 International Show Car Association (ISCA) Car of the Year.

Karl Kustons US military 2016 Chevrolet Corvette Imagery is featured on the body and under the hood.Photo courtesy of Karl Kustoms

"We did what we could to take this thing over the top," said Ed Birmingham, Karl Kustoms Painter. "I sat there for hours doing the detail work. I spent more time than I would normally spend on a hood, but it all paid off."

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The 2022 Chevrolet Silverado HD goes on sale this summer.

Photo courtesy of Chevrolet

The 2022 Chevrolet Silverado HD isn't new, and neither is the Multi-Flex Tailgate. However, the combination of the two is fresh for the 2022 model year.

The Multi-Flex Tailgate will be offered as an option on all 2022 Silverado HD models, in addition to the segment-exclusive Power Up/Down Tailgate option on LT, LTZ and High Country.

General Motors, the parent company of Chevrolet, first offered the tailgate as the branded MultiPro Tailgate for GMC pickups. Then it was renamed for the Chevy trucks lineup and finally it makes its way to heavy-duty Chevy models.

2022 Chevrolet Silverado HD The 2022 Chevrolet Silverado HD will be available with the Multi-Flex Tailgate.Photo courtesy of Chevrolet

The Chevrolet version of the tailgate really isn't much different than the GMC version. The biggest difference is that it wears bow tie badging.

It's functionality includes:

  • Primary gate — opens from the key fob, from inside the truck or via a button on the gate.
  • Primary gate load stop — helps prevent items from sliding out of the box.
  • Easy access — the inner gate folds down, allowing a deeper reach into the box.
  • Full-width step — the inner gate folds into a large step for easy access and holds up to 375 pounds.
  • Inner gate load stop — helps prevent second-tier items from sliding out of the box.
  • Inner gate with work surface — when opened, provides a work surface as well as second-tier loading.

2022 models also will be offered in a new exterior color, Greenstone Metallic, when the truck arrives on dealership lots later this summer. Pricing has yet to be announced.

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