Seeing one of these rare Corvettes is a treat for the eyes.
Towards the end of the C4’s run, Polo Green became a popular hue. Anyone who was alive then knows that, for a brief period in the 1990s, dark green was a popular color for sports and luxury cars. In 1996, for example, Chevrolet sold around 4,000 red Corvettes, and about 2,400 in Polo Green.
For the first year of the C5, Chevrolet offered a similar color called Fairway Green. It was brighter and deeper than Polo Green, and it accented the Corvette’s curvaceous new shape well. However, as the world looked toward the impending new millennium, the appeal of green cars softened. Maybe green didn’t seem futuristic enough to ’90s sensibilities. Silver reigned supreme.
In 1997, GM sold just 155 Corvettes in Fairway Green, representing less than two percent of total Corvette production. That same year, they shipped 3,000 Torch Red and over 2,000 Sebring Silver Corvettes. Apparently, folks just didn’t want green cars anymore.
Hard to Find
Regardless, Fairway Green soldiered on for 1998. That year, 223 Corvettes left Bowling Green painted Fairway Green. However, with C5 production ramping up, that increase meant that the color represented less than one percent of total 1998 production.
1998 also brought us Light Oak interior trim. Many believe that the Fairway Green/Light Oak combo is the best way to own one. In 1998, 129 coupes and 60 convertibles were painted Fairway Green. The remaining 34 cars were fixed-roof coupes, which was the same body style eventually employed by the Z06.
Unlike Aztec Gold, there were no dramatic paint match issues or supply problems. People simply voted with their wallets and decided that black, white, silver, and red Corvettes were the ones they wanted. It’s a shame because Fairway Green is a stunning color on the C5.
Some say that the paint has an almost pearlescent look to it, with subtle gold metalflake adding to its shine. At dusk, a Fairway Green Corvette is simply stunning. It gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “golden hour.”
Due to their rarity, we don’t see Fairway Green Corvettes very often. That’s a real shame, since the color is so dynamic. We’d still like it even if they had built thousands. It would still be among our favorite C5 Corvette colors.
Photos: Corvette Forum members