We have to wonder how many young baby boomers were transformed into lifelong Corvette fans by the television drama Route 66, which aired on CBS from October 7, 1960 to March 20, 1964. Seldom has roaming aimlessly through the countryside without a home or a job looked so glamorous.
Every Friday night at 8:30, Tod Stiles (played by Martin Milner) and Buz Murdock (George Maharis) managed to find a new adventure, hopping from one town to the next, one thought-provoking drama to the next, in Tod’s new Corvette. Who hasn’t wanted to be Tod or Buz, at least for a week or two? And who hasn’t lusted after a Corvette like Tod’s, if for only a moment?
While the program was a critical and commercial success for several years, fans agree that the story began to lose its steam midway through the third season, when George Maharis left the show and was ultimately replaced by Glenn Corbett, playing a new companion named Lincoln Case. The last Route 66 Corvette was a 1963 Stingray convertible (below) in Saddle Tan, which was used through the final show aired in March of 1964. There have been several attempts to revive the program, including a 1993 series reboot that lasted only a handful of episodes. There was talk of a new series a few years ago, but nothing more came of it.