Two years ago, Dave Kindig of Kindig It Design revealed his CF1 Roadster at the 2021 SEMA Show. Think of it as a modern take on the 1953 Corvette with every panel, dimension, and finish massaged to perfection. For those of you not familiar with Kindig’s CF1, here’s the cheat sheet. Kindig wanted to produce his own turn-key car, designed by his team and sold by his company, so he assembled some of the best suppliers in the business and hit the drawing board.
Let’s start with Kindig’s completely reimagined body. Doug’s Performance Corvette (formerly Classic Reflection Coachworks) makes the carbon-fiber composite body in Lakewood, Washington, and ships it to Kindig It Design in Utah. The new body is a much bigger and wider car than the original Corvette. Kindig once said, “Back in the ’50s, it seems like people were smaller. We wanted our car to be comfortable and fit modern humans.”
Kindig also brought GM Design Chief Harley Earl’s legendary C1 Corvette proportions into tack-sharp focus, by tightening the space between the top of the wheel wells and the fenders to create a smooth and aggressive look. The CF1 Roadster body weighs in at a svelte 291 pounds, and the car’s curb weight tips the scale at roughly 3000 lbs.
For power, Kindig stuffs a special LS7 engine package under the hood, all suited up in velocity-stacked, polished glory. The Lingenfelter Performance Eliminator LS7 427 cubic-inch V8 engine produces 673 horsepower and 618 lb-ft of torque. The mill is hooked up to a GM automatic transmission, all sitting in a Roadster Shop Spec 7 chassis, with Wilwood brakes, Dakota Digital gauges, and a Borla exhaust system.
The CF1’s cabin retains the look and feel of the 1953 Corvette’s interior, but with all the modern conveniences that today’s drivers expect. JS Customs stitches the interiors, with a loving recreation of the original car. The steering wheel is especially understated and cool, with a nod to classic early-’50s Chevrolet design.
Kindig was very clever here, as most of the difficult aspects of the CF1 are handled by suppliers. Essentially, Kindig It Designs handles the final assembly of the finest components on the market amalgamated into the CF1. However, it would be too simple to imply that just anyone could create the CF1. Kindig and his team’s keen eye for design and years of building cars is a killer combo and is absolutely the magic sauce that makes the CF1 so cool.
What does all this cost? Rumor has it the CF1 Roadster retails for around $375K, and #008 sold at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale in February of this year for over $500K. Since 2021, Kindig has produced nine examples of the CF1, including an EV version. However, there seems to be a bit of mystery regarding CF1 #006 as there are no images of the car on Kindig’s site, nor do any images of the car turn up in an internet search. Regardless, let’s take a look at the rest of the CF1 builds Kindig has produced so far:
CF1 Roadster #001
CF1 Roadster #002
CF1 Roadster #003
CF1 Roadster #004
CF1 Roadster #007
CF1 Roadster #008
CF1 Roadster #009
Finally, the CF1 Roadster reminds us of the 2002 Ford Thunderbird, the Chevy SS Roadster, the New Beetle, and yes Chrysler’s PT Cruiser. That might seem like underhanded praise, but the CF1 is so deftly executed, with just the right amount of firepower and style, that it shows that the retro car thing works when presented lovingly by true car guys. An unlimited budget and low production of the CF1 are key differences with respect to the aforementioned cars, but you get the drift. In the meantime, Kindig It Design would love to build you a CF1, just bring lots of money.
Kindig It Design CF1 Roadster Specifications
- Designed and built by Kindig It Design in Salt Lake City, Utah
- Engine: Lingenfelter Performance LS7 427 V8 with ITB velocity stack induction
- Horsepower: 673 hp
- Torque: 618 lb-ft
- Transmission: GM Performance 4L80E automatic
- Chassis: Roadster Shop independent Spec 7 chassis to Kindig specifications
- Composite Carbon Fiber Body – Doug’s Performance Corvette in Lakewood, Washington
- Wheels: 21-inch & 22-inch custom wheels built by Forgeline
- Tires: Michelin Pilot S4 tires
- Brakes: Wilwood Engineering disc brakes
- Exhaust: Custom full stainless Borla Exhaust
- Interior: Custom leather interior by JS Custom Interiors
- Gauges: Dakota Digital
- Steering wheel: One-off
- Heating & A/C: Vintage Air
- Paint: Custom colors using Modern Classikk by Kindig