SEMA 2012: Flex-A-Lite Cools Off this Red Hot C3 Corvette

If you think about it, Flex-A-Lite is a head gasket company’s worst enemy. They’ve been helping car nuts keep their cool since 1962, and at this year’s SEMA show we got to see their latest releases – a complete set of cooling solutions for one of our favorite cars, the 1968-1982 C3 Corvette. Flex-A-Lite’s Lisa Chissus showed us Jeff and Ellen Blue’s 1970 Corvettte, which features their 52181C3 radiator and fan combo, 4116C3 transmission cooler, and 32017 overflow tank.

The T-slot end tank construction offers an ideal mounting point for the fan brackets and overflow tank.

The 22″ x 18.5″ x 2.25″ radiator core provides superior cooling capacity, even in air conditioned cars, and the 180-series fan pulls 3,300 CFM while drawing just 18 amps. Flex-A-Lite’s signature T-slot tank design provides the perfect mounting surface for the fan, transmission cooler support, and the overflow tank, and actually serves as an auxiliary heat exchanger. 

Cars equipped with automatic transmissions will require the Flex-A-Lite transmission cooler, which features a 16,000 GVW rating.

The radiator and fan combo comes with an adjustable electronic thermostat and A/C relay, making installation about as easy as it gets. Per Chissus, the cooling capacity of typical stock replacement radiators just isn’t up to the task of keeping C3 Corvettes in warmer climates cool, and in terms of quality, Flex-A-Lite’s hand welded aluminum end tanks are far superior to the epoxied plastic ones typical for replacement pieces. The radiator is available in both front and side outlet configurations to match your Corvette’s plumbing.

Flex-A-Lite is also introducing a similar radiator and fan combo for 2nd Gen Camaros, and 1999-2012 GM truck and SUV applications.

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About the author

Paul Huizenga

After some close calls on the street in his late teens and early twenties, Paul Huizenga discovered organized drag racing and never looked back, becoming a SFI-Certified tech inspector and avid bracket racer. Formerly the editor of OverRev and Race Pages magazines, Huizenga set out on his own in 2009 to become a freelance writer and editor.
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