First Chevrolet Corvette race car on sale for nearly $7 million

The 1956 Corvette SR-2 had a top speed of over 150 mph.

The Chevrolet Corvette has always been one of the greatest performance car bargains in the world, but there’s at least one that won’t come cheap.

The first Corvette ever built for racing is currently on sale for $6.885 million, according to the DuPont Registry. The 1956 Corvette SR-2 was developed for GM design honcho Harley Earl’s son, who had been racing a Ferrari. Dad thought he could do better.

With the help of GM’s director of high performance, Zora Arkus-Duntov, a stock Corvette was modified with racing brakes and suspension, and a sleek new style that included covered headlamps, twin chopped windscreens, cooling scoops, and a small stabilizer fin down the center of the trunk lid.

A year later the fin was replaced with a much larger one behind the driver’s head, and the car’s 336 cubic inch V8 was upgraded with fuel injection and rated at 331 hp. The car had a top speed of over 150 mph.

Only three of the vehicles were produced before Chevrolet and the other American automakers officially pulled out of racing at the end of 1957 due to public sentiment about the safety of the sport. It was sold and privately raced for many years afterwards, on everything from road courses to drag strips, and is now in fully restored condition. Its current owner purchased it in 1986.

The car is being sold via "private treaty" by Corvette Mike and won’t be crossing the block at of those televised auctions, but it will be on display at Scottsdale Sport and Classic Autocars during the Scottsdale auction week, from January 12-14.