Cool Runnings - Surreal Tropical Scene 1961 Corvette Corvette styling was substantially upgraded in 1961. Although enthusiasts at the time did not know it, they were being given a sneak peak of things to come. The rear would carry over to 1963, which would be a pivotal year in Corvette history. The "ducktail" design (below) of the 1961 (and '62) with its four tail lights would be known as "transitional" years. The exhaust now exited below the body and not via an opening in the bumper as in previous years.