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The Ridler Award Is Given Out Each Year During Detroit’s Autorama Event

Kindig-It TwelveAir LS V12 C1 Corvette

2024 marked the 71st year of the Detroit Autorama, and the coveted Don Ridler Memorial Award found a new home after another spectacular year of judging. Out of the eight finalists, one car stood out above all the others, blending classic Chevrolet styling cues with modern design and enough wax to make the vehicle sparkle with the lighting of the building the event was in. This is the TwelveAir, an incredible spin on a GM Motorama show car, built by Kindig-It Design, owned by Dave and Tracey Maxwell of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with four years spent to bring this car to life where it debuted in Detroit. The centerpiece? An LS V12 engine.

Kindig-It TwelveAir: An LS V12 C1 Corvette

Inspiration for the TwelveAir traces back to the 1954 General Motors “Motorama,” where three Corvette concepts were unveiled at this traveling car show. One was “The Corvair,” which inspired future Corvettes, particularly the coupe that eventually debuted in 1963 as the split window model. Kindig-It Design took inspiration from this early Corvette concept and other European and American designs to bring about this all-aluminum-bodied C1 Corvette.

Kindig-It TwelveAir LS V12 Corvette C1 Ridler Award Autorama Detroit

Under the hood of this marvelous creation is a custom-built, naturally aspirated 9.2-liter LS V-12 engine crafted by Race Cast Engineering. Mated to an engine is a GM8L90E eight-speed overdrive automatic transmission. Hand-built stainless-steel headers connect to a custom 4-inch exhaust, exiting from the center of the car. As for the suspension, the vehicle features a single lateral coilover cantilever pushrod design. Connecting the car to the ground is a set of one-off EVOD custom wheels with Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires wrapped around them. Meanwhile, Wilwood Aero6 R front brakes and Aero4 rears and custom hats are mounted just behind the marvelous wheels.

The inside is dawned with Sienna leather stitched by JS Custom Interiors. A 3D-printed dash, console, and inserts add a bespoke touch while ambient lighting sets the mood. Finally, Haltec Nexus VCU handles the electronics. Altogether, the Kindig-It TwelveAir not only claimed the coveted Ridler trophy but also secured a $10,000 prize, which definitely deserves the rewards.


Kindig-It TwelveAir LS V12 C1 Corvette

Written by Zac Quinn

Zac's love for cars started at a young age, after seeing the popular Eleanor from Gone In 60 Seconds. From there, fascination and enthusiasm blossomed and to this day the Ford Mustang remains a favorite. His first job started out detailing cars, but also provided the opportunity to work on restoration including an 1968 Ford Mustang, Pontiac Firebird, and a C3 Corvette, though he left that job before further work and experience could be had. From there, he was a detailer at a car dealership before quitting that job to try and finish college.

Much of his free time while studying was spent watching YouTube videos regarding new cars, or off-roading. 4WD247 is a personal favorite channel which rekindled a dying flame in car enthusiasm, now tailored towards trucks and SUVs and the fun that can be had building up an overlanding rig, and going on adventures, though, that chapter remains unwritten for the time being.

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