What’s better than one of the rarest American sports cars? How about one that was owned by a two-time Daytona 500 winner?
A 1999 Callaway C12 formerly owned by Dale Earnhardt Jr. is currently up for auction on Bring a Trailer. It’s not a race-winning stock car, but this heavily modified Chevrolet Corvette isn’t all that far off.
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Callaway Cars has been upgrading road cars since the 1970s, but it wasn’t until the Connecticut-based shop unveiled its take on the C4 Corvette near the end of the 1980s that it really established itself. The company has applied its touch to several vehicles from manufacturers around the world over the decades, but the car remains most closely associated with Chevy’s iconic sports car.
It’s hard to pick a favorite Callaway ‘Vette, but the C12 has to be near the top of the list. The shop’s 12th vehicle was founder Reeves Callaway’s attempt to build a true American supercar, according to Road and Track. It was based on the C5 Corvette but the entire exterior, aside from the glass and doors, was jettisoned in favor of a longer and sleeker fiber and Kevlar body designed by Paul Deutschman.
The work was far from complete, though. Callaway has always placed an emphasis on performance. Sure enough, it equipped the C12 with a modified version of the C4 Corvette’s 5.7-liter LS1 V-8. This example, though, features an even more powerful 6.2-liter SuperNatural V-8. The mill produces 482 hp and 466 ft lbs of torque which is sent to the rear wheels via a six-speed manual transmission. Other upgrades include four-wheel disc brakes with Alcon front calipers and a set of 19-inch Azev wheels.
Dale Jr.’s C12 is one of just 25 the shop built during the two years the cars were in production. He purchased the vehicle, which is finished in Mauritius Blue Mica over a two-tone grey leather, in 2004 and held onto it until 2015, when it was acquired by its current owner. It has 25,000 miles on the odometer, which isn’t too bad considering it left the factory a quarter-century ago. The car also features the NASCAR Hall of Famer’s signature on the headliner, as well as a couple of signs of minor wear and tear.
If you want to add Dale Jr.’s C12 to your garage, you have until Sunday, February 11, to place your bid. As of press time, bidding stands at $80,000, but it wouldn’t be too surprising to see that number climb in the next few days.
Click here for more photos of Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s former Callaway C12.
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