Suggestion on Corvette year to buy

I am interested in purchasing a Corvette and would like a suggestion on a year or year range. I am just going to use it as a fun "driver"
and I would like it to be probably no older than 12 to 15 years old. I have owned two others in my lifetime (a '63 gold split window and a '78 silver anniversary) and had them for just the same reason--fun to drive and they were very nice looking.
Importance in highest to lowest order:
1. Best year for reliability and overall general performance 2. Price 3. Low mileage
I have found in the past that there is a sweet spot where the price is a minimum and the year is somewhere between 5 and 15 years old where you can get a reliable car with relatively low mileage (say around 50,000 to 60,000 miles maximum). It has been around 20 years since my last purchase, so I am out of touch with what are the ideal years. I worked with Dave McLellan about 8 years ago and at that time he suggested a 1996 or newer based on the technology it had.
What are your suggestions?
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You don't say how much you can spend, but if you can find a C5 that's affordable, go that way. Bet you wish you still had that '63...
AJM '93 40th Anniversary coupe, 6 sp (both tops)
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Like AJM said, you didnt list a price range. Assuming you have $20-25 k. to spend , youd be wise to look at 1998 to (hopefully) 2002 . These years had the LS1 motor which is pretty responsive with incredible fuel economy , mileage should fall in between 30-60 k . , and reliablility seemed acceptable from those ive talked with. Id check with www.corvetteforum.com and corvette trader online. Lots of guys are needing to sell their car due to the bad economy and you just might get an extremely sweet deal.
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eganders wrote:

I think items #1 and #2 place you in the C5 category. But, if you're not competitive with regard to handling, look at 95-96.
I don't throw stones at my own '02 but I'd suggest going for an '03 or '04. Bowling Green was still sorting out minor issues toward the end of the C5 run. (Dad sometimes notes that the C5s got better as the years went on.)
There was better data integration in the '03 and '04, one less major module (than in the '02) and fewer connectors that carry system-critical data. ...that pays off as the car ages. -- pj e-blu '02 // '89 driver
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The OP might be interested to know of a current article in CORVETTE magazine , Sept. 2009, page 63, where the Author discusses best buys for $15,000 . Its a detailed analysis consisting of 5 pages, and covers best buys for C3,4,and 5's for $15 k. I believe you can access this magazine online or get it at your local larger Bookstore.
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