Author: Jason / Date: August 29, 2022 / Tags: classic cars
(RareCarMarket.com) – In 1971, General Motors (GM) set out to celebrate America’s astronauts. For the Apollo 15 mission, the company leased custom Corvettes, nicknamed AstroVettes, to astronauts for just $1. However, at the conclusion of the lease, which lasted only one year, the American heroes would have to return the vehicles, and GM would resell them to new owners. Now, the grandson of Al Worden, the command module pilot of Apollo 15, is looking to renew his grandfather’s AstroVette to its former glory.
William Worden-Penczak joined forces with Luna Replicas, which specializes in NASA memorabilia, to bring his grandfather’s 1971 AstroVette back to life. He told collectSPACE the car was a “symbol” for an important part of America’s aerospace history as well as his own family’s. The collaborative effort launched after the partnership purchased the vehicle five years after it was discovered sitting in a field.
Worden-Penczak and Luna Replicas are paying for the restoration themselves; estimated costs are likely between $150,000 and $200,000. They have said they might make a YouTube channel following the progress of the car, but for now, you can see some of the work on the Luna Replica channel. The partnership hopes to have the AstroVette ready for Apollo 15’s 53rd anniversary in 2024.
Worden’s Vette was white with a red and blue stripe. The other mission specialist, David Scott and Jim Irwin, each had an AstroVette of their own. Irwin’s was blue with a red and white stripe, and Scott’s was red with a white and blue stripe. The colors matched those of their personal belongings and food items on Apollo 15.
Worden-Penczak and Max Kaiserman, founder of Luna Replicas, hope the car will inspire people, especially those in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).
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