Cotrofeld Automotive, Inc. – ‘America’s Oldest Corvair Shop’ – specializes in the repair and restoration of the Chevrolet Corvair (the Corvair rolled off Chevrolet’s production line from 1960 through 1969). The family owned and operated business began in 1939, with the Corvair shop thriving for the last 49 years.
Cotrofeld Automotive principal – Bill Cotrofeld Jr. – represents the second of three generations immersed in the automotive industry. Bill Sr. started an automotive repair business in 1939 and today Tim – Bill’s grandson – manages the Corvair shop in Arlington, Vermont. Rounding out the family effort, Bill’s wife, Kathy, manages the office.
Bill’s adoration with the Corvair began with its debut back in late 1959. Working at the Westfall Chevrolet dealership (Altamont, NY), Bill trained at the Chevrolet School (Tarrytown, NY) for the model introduction – and quickly became a Corvair specialist.
A short time later, in 1961, while the Corvair underwent several changes (the four-door station wagon, a window van, a panel van and the pickup were introduced), so did Bill. He built a shop behind his home and began working on Corvairs day and night. As the years progressed, Bill exited the dealer network and moved his rapidly expanding business to several larger locations. Today, it has found a permanent home at the former Arlington Industries building on Main Street in Arlington.
True pioneers in the field, Cotrofeld Automotive repairs, rebuild and restores Corvairs – either in their entirety or any of their component parts. While the shop performs regular maintenance and repair work, their specialty is superior street restoration and detailing for concours quality shows. They also specialize in interior and convertible top restoration; and complete body and paint work.
Though the family sold the NOS Corvair parts business in 1994, Cotrofeld Automotive remains responsible for many of the US made reproduction Corvair parts available in today’s market – including virtually all rubber weather stripping.
The Cotrofelds own several Corvairs themselves – with the most notable being the Yenko Stinger #002. In fact, Tim drove the Yenko to FTD and won the prestigious Fitch Award at Lime Rock Park (Lakeville, CT) in 2001. Tim has also had considerable success with another of their Corvairs in select SCCA events.
Cotrofeld Automotive is a member of the Corvair Society of America and the Antique Automobile Club of America. In pursuit of their Corvair passion, through the years, the Cotrofelds have traveled to over 600 car shows. They are also fixtures on several regional racing circuits.