The ‘Vette is Back
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And turning heads everywhere it goes
The legendary American muscle car is back, and looking more exotic than ever
We’ve been hearing about it forever, and with the unveiling of the $60k 2020 Chevrolet Corvette, it seems the wait was worth it. The ‘Vette is back, and the changes are as dramatic as we thought they’d be.
The biggest change is, of course, the engine placement, with the new powerplant moved some six feet back, from the front of the car to behind driver compartment.
That’s right, the ‘Vette has gone mid-engined like the European exotics with much pricier names that GM execs are hoping you’ll compare it to.
The new LT2 engine’s specs themselves might not have changed much – still a 6.2 liter naturally aspirated V8 – it bucks the trend of moving to turbos for power with efficiency.
Horsepower has only increased by 35, with torque numbers only up by five.
One notable concession to modern times is the lack of a manual transmission, this an admission – as with other makes – that modern buyers just aren’t that into stick shifts any more, when it comes time to plunk their cash down.
Instead drivers will be treated to a very modern dual-clutch transmission that helps the new model along to 60mph in, get this, less than 3 seconds when equipped with the z51 package (about $12k). Even with that added expense, the C8 Corvette is punching way above its weight, hanging with cars costing twice as much.
Exterior & Interior
The C8 has grown noticeably, now 5 inches longer, 2 inches wider, and 70 pounds heavier that the outgoing C7.
It’s more aggressive, too, with a everything at the front pulling to a point, and a high and very sporty rear wing available on all trims. The engine is fed air via a couple of large air intakes on either side, their openings accented in glossy black to better grab attention.
Like the exotics, the C8 can go topless, but unlike those more costly options, the top is manually operated here; It’s feather light, though, and can lifted off by one person, and stowed in the sizeable trunk (which is apparently large enough for two golf bags).
Inside there’s yet more modernity and sophistication, with the center console elevated and packed with buttons and switches to give the feeling of being in a fighter’s cockpit, and it’ll be interesting to see whether this lends to a slightly claustrophobic experience on long drives.
True performance is still a mystery, but we expect the C8 to trounce the outgoing C7 around benchmarks like the Nurburgring. The looks alone are worth the price tag, with the car turning heads like no other ‘Vette before it, and that’s the point of the car, really.
GM wants to start from scratch with this generation, expanding the market for the car, and hoping younger buyers will see it as an option to the Porsche Cayman and Jaguar F-Type.
Judging by the initial response, those other car maker’s had better be on notice. The C8 is sure to steal numbers from overseas manufacturers. The only question at this point is how many.