The distinguishing features of a Chevrolet Corvair convertible are its aluminum, air-cooled, rear engine design and drop-down top. Flat passenger and driver floor pans, low weight and a low-slung profile similar to European cars were other features.
A unique feature at the time, Corvair convertibles had an engine, transmission and rear axle combined as a single unit, much like European cars including Porsche, Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz. The Corvair convertible was available with a turbocharged engine, only the second production car to offer the horsepower-adding feature. The Corvair had very good fuel economy for the early 1960s of up to 26 miles per gallon.
Models prior to 1965 famously or infamously featured a swing-axle rear suspension, an innovative design aimed at improving ride. It was General Motors' first fully independent suspension offering. The design was criticized as a safety risk by consumer activist Ralph Nader in his book “Unsafe at Any Speed.” The concerns led to the system's replacement in 1965 with a fully independent suspension similar to the one used on Chevrolet's Corvette Sting Ray.
Other features include a roomy interior due to the boxy shape of the car. It featured a wide and deep trunk in the front. The spare tire could be stored there or in a special mount in the rear over the engine to provide more trunk space.