By on January 18, 2016

2017-Mid-Engined-Chevrolet-Corvette-1011-876x535

It is no secret that GM has flirted with mid-engine Corvettes for decades. Until now, the company has lacked the motivation, consensus, and/or resources to move to a mid-engine layout.

However, this is the new GM.

The feds are no longer calling the shots and the General has been upstaged by Ford for too long. GM now possesses the financial wherewithal, control, and competitive spirit to harness its resources and once again compete for the title of America’s finest sports car.

In 1992, the Corvette’s leadership was challenged by the Viper. Dodge’s V-10 supercar failed to eclipse the Corvette in America’s imagination and GM could afford to ignore it. However, in 2005, the Corvette was unseated by the Ford GT as America’s finest sports car. The two products are not direct competitors, but GM has nonetheless been frustrated by its penultimate position vis-à-vis Ford. During and immediately following the great recession, GM had little choice but to pretend the GT did not exist. Full-line mainstream manufacturers like Ford who produce supercars do so for their intangible benefits, not for their financial windfall.

The mid-engine Vette will get thrust from an advanced derivative of the LT1/LT4 engine family. This one will feature a pair of parallel or sequential turbochargers with output north of 700 horsepower. It’s not clear if GM plans to get exotic with the transmission or if the mid-mounted engine will require a new or significantly adapted transmission. Nonetheless, a three-pedal seven-speed manual as well as a two-paddle eight-speed auto are almost certain. Down the road, GM may also employ the super-Vette as an early recipient of advanced NMC battery technology.

The C7 has been a critical and commercial success for Chevrolet. Sales have returned to pre-recession levels and its one billion dollar development cost is well on its way to being fully amortized. The C7 will remain in the Chevy lineup, at least through the end of its life-cycle. When GM introduces the mid-engine car, it and the C7 will share the Corvette moniker.

GM is not concerned about the mid-engine Vette cannibalizing C7 sales because the new car will slot well above the current front engine car, which will continue at the $55,000 to $120,000 price range. The new mid-engine model will be priced much higher. Our best guess is that it will sticker close to the $400,000 Ford GT and Lamborghini Aventador.

Look for GM to upstage the forthcoming Ford GT with an official announcement in late 2016 or 2017.

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145 Comments on “Mid-Engine Corvette Closer Than Ever...”


  • avatar
    jrhmobile

    Nice. But I’m more interested in a mid-engined Corvette like the one Road & Track described in 1975 … Or the one Motor Trend detailed in 1984 … or the one reported by Car and Driver in 1992 …

    Color me skeptical.

  • avatar

    But will a Mustang GT 500 at a quarter of that price still give it a run for all its money.

  • avatar
    heavy handle

    That picture is obviously a camouflaged El Camino. Which is way more exciting than a mid-engined Corvette.

  • avatar
    thelaine

    A family of Corvettes is a good idea. Miata competitor, C-7, supercar. Maybe even a 4 door SuperAmerica GT.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      Corvette, like Escalade, should be spun off into its own brand IMO. “Corvette Camaro” would be weird to say, but putting all the performance cars under one umbrella just makes sense.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      Every new GM Corvette & Camaro (as well other vehicle) is hyped relentlessly, as the coming of names age at GM, where they will field dominating vehicles.

      In reality, the shine fades fast as buyers realize that GM vehicles don’t live up the hype, and worse yet, are filled with cheap compromises that a short test drive or even month of ownership won’t reveal, but that long-term ownership will.

      GM designs and builds vehicles that rarely, if ever, bring long-term ownership satisfaction, unlike much of the Asian and European competitors.

      • 0 avatar
        gsp

        This summarizes my thinking for the last quarter century PERFECTLY.

      • 0 avatar
        RideHeight

        Moonshot disease won’t dissipate until the Boomers now running things die off. But victory disease has largely abated so a little more time will cure the former as well.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I’d say this might be true today but wasn’t always true. A co-worker was debating on putting money into an MY97 Buick Lesabre/90k (very clean) his daughter was already driving. The car was inherited so I said, if you put a grand in it (plugs/wires, fluids, plenum, tires, insp etc) you’ll get it back next year if/when your daughter buys her own or you and your wife want her in something newer because you can’t get a better car for the same money. I’d say this man’s father and family achieved long term owner satisfaction.

        • 0 avatar
          RideHeight

          But you’re talking a grand while the article is about something costing a few hundred of those. Who’s going to risk that kind of investment (of money and ego) on a Chebby?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            @RH

            I was responding to DW’s point here: “GM designs and builds vehicles that rarely, if ever, bring long-term ownership satisfaction, unlike much of the Asian and European competitors.”

            Although yes I agree what I’m saying doesn’t apply to a new Chevrolet.

          • 0 avatar
            redav

            So, the secret to long-term satisfaction with a GM car is to inherit it?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            @redav

            Nah its to stick to the things they didn’t screw up, which are few and far between.

      • 0 avatar
        ceipower

        All True. Sadly , there are still those who drink the GM Kool-Aid , who just know the Phoenix will rise again. Well , “Phoenix” might be a poor choice of words in GM’s case.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        …..GM designs and builds vehicles that rarely, if ever, bring long-term ownership satisfaction, unlike much of the Asian and European competitors….

        Well, Consumer Reports shows customer satisfaction with the Vette to be much higher than almost all other vehicles they compile stats for, even for those model years whose reliability is not that great. So much for your blanket statement.

        • 0 avatar
          CJinSD

          By now GM has raised morale by firing all the unhappy people, only in this case it is creating happy customers by driving all the discerning ones off to greener pastures.

    • 0 avatar
      ceipower

      There are no monkeys flying out of my butt.

  • avatar
    OneAlpha

    Why is it called “mid-engined,” rather than a more accurate “rear-engined?”

    A truly mid-engined car would have the powerplant literally in the center of the vehicle – where the center console is. The vehicle’s layout should be named for the engine’s placement relative to the cabin.

    If the engine’s up front, it’s front engine. If the engine’s behind the seats, it’s rear engined.

    • 0 avatar
      RideHeight

      Pssh… even I know this one.

    • 0 avatar

      Actually it would be a RMR configuration – Rear mid engine / rear drive, where the engine resides between the driver and the rear wheels.

      This picture looks nothing like a Corvette in any way. More like a ford pickup. Is that a Ford grille?

    • 0 avatar
      probert

      “MId” refers to “between the front and rear axles” The Corvette is already a front/mid engined car. A rear engined car has he motor out over the rear axle – like a 911. A mid engined car would be the caymen.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      If the engine’s location and weight is mostly between the front and rear axles, it’s mid-engined. Of course, there’s front-mid-engined, which is when the engine is between the axles, but toward the front of the car (also called front-midship, see Nissan’s entire FM platform). Typically we don’t distinguish front-midship cars from normal front-engined ones, probably because it’s not as exotic. Then, there’s rear-mid-engined, when the engine is between the axles, but toward the rear of the car, behind the cabin. This Corvette is the latter type, as are Lamborghinis, the Ford GT, etc.

      Rear-engined cars are rarer still. The best example is the 911…whose engine is mostly slung out behind the rear axle.

    • 0 avatar
      gmialumnus

      My Previa is a truly proper mid-engine placement; I sit directly over the engine.

    • 0 avatar
      msquare

      The difference between mid-engine and rear-engine is where the engine sits with respect to the rear axle.

      If it’s inside the rear axle, it’s mid-engine, if outside, rear. A Porsche 911 is a rear-engine car while the Boxster/Cayman is mid-engine. While it seems like a matter of semantics, the difference is obvious in terms of weight distribution and handling.

      Some sports cars have their engines behind the front axle for better balance, and sometimes they’re called front mid-engine, but traditionally they’re considered front-engine because the motor remains ahead of the cockpit.

    • 0 avatar
      jdogma

      Understand your logic, but it is an old tradition. Many early front engined cars had the engines well behind the front axle – Model T Ford for example. When it became clear that mid engined cars were superior race cars,manufacturers like to say that their cars were “front mid-engined). Mid-engined in the popular vernacular denotes the engine in front of the rear axle but behind the driver. These days, 2 of the disadvantages of mid-engined cars are nullified by modern tech – shift linkage and throttle linkage.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    For $400,000, I’d better not see the steering wheel from the Cruze, or any other parts-bin BS. You hear that, GM?

    • 0 avatar
      heavy handle

      The same rule applies here as it does for anybody considering a Chevy: maybe you should save-up your money and get a nice car instead. Work a few extra shifts, catch a few more touchdowns, release a hit record, do whatever it takes. The new-car smell will be gone soon, and all you’ll be left with is a Chevy. You can do better.

    • 0 avatar
      OneAlpha

      GM is probably the only company in the world, other than Toyota, capable of building a $400,000 car that’s actually a good AUTOMOBILE.

      A Corvette isn’t just a world-class sports car, it’s a car that you can actually use to get groceries, commute to work and on those rare occasions when it needs service, won’t bankrupt you while causing you to wonder why a window motor or an IAC is so difficult to make.

      If Ferrari’s cars didn’t wear badges with prancing horses on them, they would’ve been bankrupted by Lemon Laws many moons ago.

  • avatar
    Ihatejalops

    If it comes with a proper engine (i.e. V8) then I’m sold. The GT is lame because it has bitch ass turbos. You hear the engine on the commercial? Sounded like a euro knock off and not American. Euro’s don’t do everything right and engine noise is still #1 American.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      “It has a more technologically advanced powertrain? Worst. Sports car. Ever.”

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        Explain what’s so advanced about a turbo? We’ve used them for over 50 years, I can literally put a turbo on any car in my driveway. And explain what technology has to do, in this instance, with sound quality.

        This is a difference similar to a product made in America vs made in a 3rd world nation. Sure it will work for a while but it’s still low quality half-assery because someone couldn’t do it correctly.

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          the difference being we now have turbos which spool up nearly instantly, last for 200,000 miles without spitting up their bearings and oil seals, and DI lets us keep higher static compression ratios yet still apply boost.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al From 'Murica

      “The mid-engine Vette will get thrust from an advanced derivative of the LT1/LT4 engine family. This one will feature a pair of parallel or sequential turbochargers with output north of 700 horsepower”

      So, do turbocharges mounted on GM products qualify as “B!TC#-A$$” or is it only Ford installed ones? Just buy a lifted Silverado as that seems to be more up your alley.

    • 0 avatar
      ceipower

      So then when a Tesla blows your doors off you can pull over, rev your V8 and feel proud!

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        When a Tesla blows my doors off, it will sputter to a stop a few miles down the road. They’re the slowest cars on the 15 freeway, since their speed and range are so inversely related to one another. They’d own the road if we still had the 55 mph speed limit. They’re on a fool’s errand when So Cal traffic travels at 80+.

  • avatar
    wmba

    “GM now possesses the financial wherewithal, control, and competitive spirit to harness its resources and once again compete for the title of America’s finest sports car.”

    Spoken like a true PR flack and GM fanboi.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      Implying anything on TTAC is ever 100% unbiased.

      • 0 avatar
        Seth Parks

        I call it how I see it. And the way I see it is GM is producing better cars, relative to the competition, than they have in at least two decades. Probably longer. Moreover, based on conversations with insiders, I know GM has a group of dedicated car guys trying to get it right. They don’t always win, but they are passionate about making great cars and trucks.

        So yes, I do want to see GM create compelling products. That said, I have not owned one in over 20 years. For now, I’m more cheerleader than fanboi.

        • 0 avatar
          MeJ

          I wanted to ask you where this info is coming from. You stated the engine will be a LT1/4 derivative with turbo’s, that sounds like you have some very specific insider information. How do you know this? I’m not necessarily doubting you, I’m just wondering about your sources.

          • 0 avatar
            Seth Parks

            Totally reasonable question MeJ. And I wish I could ID the provenance of the info – so does TTAC. What I can say is that I trust it, or I would not have written the piece.

          • 0 avatar
            mcs

            >>> And I wish I could ID the provenance of the info – so does TTAC. What I can say is that I trust it, or I would not have written the piece.

            I’ll disclose the source for him:

            http://www.caranddriver.com/news/exclusive-mid-engine-c8-chevrolet-corvette-first-photos-news

          • 0 avatar
            Seth Parks

            mcs – Thank you for sending a link to the C&D article. You are right that we do not have new imagery for the car. But this is not a creative writing exercise. And if one compares the information contained in the two articles it will become evident that the story has been advanced. If we waited for OEMs to confirm all information prior to publication, we might as well just read their press releases.

          • 0 avatar
            mcs

            Seth, I don’t know what information you’re getting, but there is a Corvette performance plug-in hybrid coming and it’s called the Corvette E-Ray. It’s going to be competition for the upcoming 911 performance plug-in hybrid. It will be AWD via the electric motors like the 918. Let’s see which one of us has the best information sources! Although I have a feeling we will both be right. Ask your sources about the E-Ray and see if we’re talking about the same car.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      Evidently, if anyone says anything remotely pleasant about GM, he or she is a fanboi. Some fool recently called *me* such. I support GM, but I’m also very critical of the company and more likely to buy a Ford these days.

      • 0 avatar
        Eyeflyistheeye

        So If I’m being called a “fool” by a self-aggrandizing know-it-all who keeps getting rhetorically stomped on at Facebook or any other venue where you’re forced to defend your position, that must make me a genius! Looks like I struck a nerve when I pointed that out and your obvious biases against Lexus and for GM when like Fox News you claim to be fair and balanced but obviously not.

        Every time a remnant of the old GM is rightfully criticized, you come on your high horse to justify the car such as the outgoing Malibu, a car worse than its predecessor, with generic faint praise.

  • avatar
    bcweinstock

    That pic looks quite a bit like a Holden HSV Maloo…

  • avatar
    65corvair

    Get rid of the low tech fiberglass too!

  • avatar
    kmars2009

    They can call the mid engined one the CORVAIR. LOL. Seriously though, if the Corvette is selling well, why mess with success? Shouldn’t all the development money be spent on retooling factories in the U.S. to build cars here, instead of China and Mexico? Why isn’t this American company investing in American jobs?

    • 0 avatar
      jammyjo

      Assembly of high margin cars and trucks will stay in the US. For the assembly of lower margin cars, labor costs too much. Either you pay less for it, or use less of it. Most labor goes into sub-assemblies and components from suppliers like Visteon and Johnson controls.

      • 0 avatar
        kmars2009

        There is NO reason the Buick Envision and Cadillac CT6 HYBRID must be made in China. None! For the Chinese market, fine. But cars for the American market really should be made in North America. GM will eventually move all production elsewhere, if the Chinese trade is not stopped. The UAW should be worried, and/or step in and stop this travisty.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          I agree, but because they can, they will. The last figures I saw still showed the prevailing PRC wage was still half of the US wage, and PRC gives these companies more flexibility with regulations, environmental, and civil rights.

          “GM will eventually move all production elsewhere, if the Chinese trade is not stopped”

          That’s the idea.

          “The UAW should be worried, and/or step in and stop this travisty. [sic]”

          I suspect the UAW is more toothless than it once was.

  • avatar
    Polishdon

    “In 1992, the Corvette’s leadership was challenged by the Viper. Dodge’s V-10 supercar failed to eclipse the Corvette in America’s imagination and GM could afford to ignore it.”

    WHAT ????

    Before the Viper, the Corvette was producing about 300hp. When the Viper came out, the Corvette got gradually upped in HP (though it took like 10 years and a new gen to do it) to match the Viper. And the Viper was EVERYWERE!! It was the 1990’s equivalent to the Lamborghini Countach. It was the cool sports car that was unique, unlike the dime-a-dozen Corvette.

    The Corvette got complacent as the “American Sports Car” and it got a nice tight wegie from the Viper and the Ford GT.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      The ZR1 existed.

      • 0 avatar
        Polishdon

        Yes it did. As a very limited, high priced model. Well over the price of the Viper. And it still lacked the unique appearance of the Viper. Except for the rounding back end(which was grafted on ALL Corvettes a few years later).

        Unless you knew what ZR-1 meant, you didn’t know. But everyone KNEW what a Viper was.

        • 0 avatar
          msquare

          The Viper is a limited, high-priced model. Corvettes outsell Vipers by a ratio of more than 10 to 1.

          ZR-1 production is actually comparable to the contemporary Viper, of which no more than 2400 were built in any one given model year.

    • 0 avatar
      ceipower

      At some point in time after the spectacular 1963 split window sting-rays ,Corvettes began to morph in a “Barbies Sports Car” and GM had no problem with that. It’s more Buick than Chevrolet these days even with the latest design.

  • avatar
    ajla

    I’m excited to watch the GT racecar lose to the C7.R at Sebring and LeMans this year.

  • avatar
    outback_ute

    Flying cars are closer than ever too?

  • avatar
    "scarey"

    I am thinking that the switch to a “mid” engine layout would be to divert attention from the switch to the inevitable four, five, or six cylinder engines. The switch would need to be accompanied by overwhelming technology, which GM usually FAILS at either by poor design or execution, or just a loss of interest in the product. See in no particular order Corvair, Fiero, Allante, Reatta, Solstice, Vega, the Oldsmobile diesel, the Cadillac 5-3-1 engine (oops), etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      I was just about to say, “since when has GM dabbled in odd numbers?” Then I remembered the Atlas I5 in the Canyon/Colorado. Mileage of a V6, power of an I4.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      Yeah, GM tech is hit-and-miss for anything that’s not a straightforward port-injected LS. Did the fix the heat-soak issue on the new Z06, or no?

      Also, I was particularly surprised by the issue on the new BOF SUVs involving wind buffeting because the roof sheetmetal may not have been properly bonded. I didn’t think anyone could eff that up…especially not on such popular, expensive and important-to-the-bottom-line vehicles.

    • 0 avatar
      ceipower

      Don’t forget the Chevy Citation, another “Jewel” that GM wants us all to forget about. I won’t forget. The garbage GM sold to the public thru the 1980’s and beyond wasn’t washed away with the cancellation of Oldsmobile,Pontiac, and sorry Saturn divisions. Dig up Roger Smith , throw his carcass in the Detroit river , then come to me with the “New GM” spiel.

  • avatar
    jammyjo

    No matter what GM puts into the car, a buyer still has to go to a Chevy dealership for sales and service. Would you want a Sonic loaner while your $150k Vette is in the shop? Somehow they need to move the Vette over to Cadillac dealerships.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      Now that *is* one department in which GM is better than Ford. At least in my area, the Chevy dealerships have trashy, low-rent sales experiences…but the Ford dealerships have terrible service.

    • 0 avatar
      ceipower

      Oh Yeah , that’s what everybody wants a Corvilliac. Didn’t they already sort of try that and it flopped? Chevrolet is all GM really has left. Buicks are ugly rental cars and their market is dying off in America. AS to Cadillac , for all the money spent and hype over the past 15 years Cadillac is still stuck with an image problem and cars that are hardly the standard for the world.(That snow-plow front end hasn’t aged well at all) GM will never be what it once was, and it can no longer bully its way around.

    • 0 avatar
      Seth Parks

      Great point jammyjo. None of the Detroit Three dealer networks are organized to service customers who can afford $75,000 F-150s, Rams and Silverados, much less $400k super cars.

      GM is aware. Look for the limited run of mid-engine Vettes to be sold through a restricted set of dealers, selected by GM for their location, sales, showrooms, and customer service records.

  • avatar
    JimZ

    “It’s not clear if GM plans to get exotic with the transmission or if the mid-mounted engine will require a new or significantly adapted transmission.”

    The transaxle is already in the back, so other than a re-designed case I don’t see why they couldn’t adapt it.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    If they build it then it should be a “halo” model above the Corvette. Zora would be an appropriate name.

  • avatar
    raph

    Pretty cool, GM has been on rip lately with some fine cars.

    I don’t think it has been the Feds really holding GM back. They always see to react to a cat agora rather than define it. The results are always impressive though.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      Yeah. Historically, Ford usually pioneers a market niche or technology, and then GM and (sometimes) Chrysler get on board. I’m *really* surprised that neither GM nor FCA have an answer to the SVT Raptor, because that has proven to be a very lucrative and profitable niche.

      • 0 avatar
        JimZ

        RAM/Mopar did the Power Wagon, but that was kind of half-assed compared to the Raptor. Plus, maybe they don’t want to deal with idiots who would buy one, drive it off a cliff, then try to sue them because the frame bent.

        • 0 avatar
          hubcap

          The modern Power Wagon was in production way before the Raptor. It’s not a Raptor competitor and never has been, unless you view the two as competing because they’re both off-road focused trucks.

          Dodge/Ram did offer a kit, the Ram Runner, that would take a 1500 and make it into a Raptor fighter BUT, if I remember correctly, the resultant truck wouldn’t be street legal and wouldn’t carry a factory warranty.

  • avatar
    ceipower

    No mention of AWD?? With engines producing more and more H.P.and torque, without AWD this would be nothing more than a burn-out toy. Sure they’ll have a myriad of electric gadgets to defeat all that power , unless your a experience F1 driver , it’s just a foolish toy. In any case , I really doubt GM (old GM and new GM are the same GM)could pull it off properly. One thing we can agree on….Bring back the ElCamino. An Impala 2 door SS and a ragtop version as well, please. Demand for any of these 3 would be low I suppose , but would surpass any super-Corvette.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      I won’t say you’re wrong, but how could demand for those be reasonably calculated? Last time GM tried something like that, the SSR, they didn’t even sell 25K in 4 years.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      >> No mention of AWD??

      Given the fact that GM trademarked “Corvette E-Ray” on December 15th (Serial Number 86850510), at the very least it will be a performance hybrid along the lines of the 918 and the upcoming hybrid 911 driving the front wheels with electric motors giving it all wheel drive.

    • 0 avatar
      hubcap

      I kinda like foolish toys!

      Thank God for McLaren:-)

    • 0 avatar
      Seth Parks

      I suspect you are right ceipower – AWD makes sense and would help differentiate the two Corvettes. Unfortunately, I didn’t get any insight on that, so I elected not address it.

  • avatar
    el scotto

    This gives the gold chain crowd hope that they can score with a barmaid half their age

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    This article is like a ‘Forbes contributor’ op ed isnt it?

    Author cites no evidence and is merely speculating.

    How is GM the least bit interested in the ‘success’ of the Ford GT. The Corvette is a roughly $60k car that many Americans can afford and sells quite well.

    The Ford GT is a $250k (???) limited edition supercar.

    They are not comparable in any way. Here’s my prediction, GM will continue the sell the Corvette as it stands, they will continue to campaign the C7R at Le Mans as always. They will continue to ignore the GT and Vipers of the world and the C8 will be another pushrod V8 front engined rwd sports car.

    • 0 avatar
      hubcap

      Most of what I hear about the Ford GT has the price at around 400K.

      That’s a lot of monies for a car but the girls come free. Talk amongst yourselves about whether that’s a good or a bad thing.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    …The C7 has been a critical and commercial success for Chevrolet. Sales have returned to pre-recession levels and its one billion dollar development cost is well on its way to being fully amortized…

    True, but at what cost. Prior generation Corvettes starting with the C4 were known for their cheap, creaky interiors and balding gold chain driver reputation. But they were fast, they handled well within their class, the bang for the buck quotient was hard to beat, and they were for the most part very reliable*. Parts, compared to the far more exotic alternatives were cheap, tuner and upgrade systems were easy to find, and in the case of the C4 and the C5, you didn’t need an engineering degree to wrench your own.

    The C7 is absolutely gorgeous. The first one I ever saw was in Florida and I didn’t even register in my brain as a Corvette. But mechanical reliability was a very high price to pay to address the other issues.

    * And before you reply that the C4 was a complete dog, comparatively to your other 1984 malaise era options it was an affordable screaming rocket ship that handled and braked very well compared to its peers from all three continents.

    • 0 avatar
      TonyJZX

      I would agree with you but the world has changed. If I’m buying a $60,000+ flagship sports car, you want all the safety and luxury.

      The old C5/C6 are ‘wrenchable’ given then are relatively simple cars and the C7 has gone over the edge as far as complexity goes but this is a part of making it palatable to the middle aged men who buy them.

      The C6 is not ‘world class’ except for performance. The C7 is truly world class in every aspect. That is a significant achievement for GM but the price is that the car now needs specialists to maintain it.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I could see “complexities” but not at the expense of basic mechanical reliability. Z06 engines should not be failing a sub 1,000 miles into the ownership experience.

        • 0 avatar
          hubcap

          “Z06 engines should not be failing a sub 1,000 miles into the ownership experience.”

          You can say that again but as you know when you design and manufacture complex pieces of equipment sh*t happens.

          Should it? No. Will it? Yes.

          And here’s the thing. You ain’t seen nothing yet. Just wait until the F-35 goes operational.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Oh it’s going to be a $hit show. I suspect the Navy will be less than pleased with their version. They probably should just order more Super Hornets.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Maybe they could get some CPO Super Hornets somewhere?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I have two thoughts on the Z06 debacle.

            -This happened early enough in the motor’s life that GM engineers should have caught it in QA. I am left to conclude: 1. it was caught and the product released anyway or 2. it was missed because GM does not do sufficient QA on one of its most important products. Neither is really a good thing.

            -The Corvette in addition to being a halo product and profitable product line, also signals the future for other RWD lines as lessons learned in it are shared later. If they managed to engineer a drivetrain so complex it failed at 500 miles on multiple occasions either GM engineering is starting to lose its edge or the LS motor has been pushed to its limits. Again, neither is very good for GM long term.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The Navy/Marine Corps did buy some CPO Harriers from the British. Hopefully they have the Nikasil fix done already.

            And the Navy better get on ordering some Super Hornets. The line needs some orders to stay open into the 2020s. Current Hornets are wearing out because they have a service life of 20 years, which is based on 100 carrier landings a year. The Navy has been busy for the last decade and a half, so many of those F/A-18B/C/Ds (non-Super Hornets) have been wearing out faster. There are 300+ regular Hornets left. They need to be replaced faster than the F-35C will be operational.

          • 0 avatar
            hubcap

            @bball

            I get why the Corps wants what it does. I’m a former graduate of Parris Island and understand the weight of tradition that sometimes impairs clear and rational thought.

            I’m no fountain of information but I can’t recall a single instance when the Harrier was used as the Corps had envisioned which was, if I recall correctly, operating out of improvised bases, far enough away to be outside of artillery range, but close enough to dash in for close air support and other interdiction missions.

            There were other options but the Harrier was chosen and now it seems a v/stol jet kinda defines Marine Corps tactical aviation.

            @28

            I think that during testing, when the engine got hot, the ECU did what it was programmed to do and pulled timing. It worked, but it worked in a classroom/training environment.

            When the car got into customers’ hands for actual operational experience, the results we’re a bit different.

            It happens and it’s also why I say wait 18-24 mths so that those initial developmental bugs get worked out.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The F-35C will be the best VSTOL military aircraft ever. I think that the Pentagon should continue down that path. On the other hand, the Navy’s version will be expensive overweight garbage that won’t be as effective as the current Super Hornet.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            @bball

            I have no doubt the F/A-18 E/F line will continue well past 2020. From what I understand it is become a defacto standard asset in Western air forces both in cost/value propositions and proven track record. What I do wonder on is whether the F-35 becomes the $1.3 trillion dollar “Windows Vista” of our time.

            “Hopefully they have the Nikasil fix done already.”

            Let’s hope so. Anything built after July 2000 should have it.

            @hubcap

            Thanks for the info’ it appears GM does really bad QA then. This isn’t one of those things were it took 10,000 miles on the clock and a weird set of circumstances to occur, this is as simple as track one for a month before you sign off on it. I did an Oracle project with General Motors Corporate in March 2014 involving SAML security integration. This experience showed me why they went bankrupt the first time.

            @both

            “On 11 March 2010, a report from the Government Accountability Office to United States Senate Committee on Armed Services projected the overall unit cost of an F-35A to be $113 million in today’s money.”

            “In 2010, Pentagon officials disclosed that the F-35 program has exceeded its original cost estimates by more than 50 percent”

            “In February 2011, the Pentagon put a price of $207.6 million on each of the 32 aircraft to be acquired in FY2012, rising to $304.16 million ($9,732.8 million ÷ 32 aircraft) if its share of research, development, test and evaluation (RDT&E) spending is included”

            “In January 2011, Defense Secretary Robert Gates expressed the Pentagon’s frustration with the rising costs of the F-35 program when he said, “The culture of endless money that has taken hold must be replaced by a culture of restraint.” Focusing his attention on the troubled F-35B, Gates ordered “a two-year probation”, saying it “should be canceled” if corrections are unsuccessful”

            “In 2012, the total life-cycle cost for the entire U.S. fleet was estimated at US$1.51 trillion over a 50-year life, or $618 million per plane.[111] To reduce this high life-cycle cost over a 50-year lifetime, the USAF is considering reducing Lockheed Martin’s role in contractor logistics support”

            “In 2013, a RAND study found that during development the three different versions had drifted so far apart from each other that having a single base design might now be more expensive than if the three services had simply built entirely different aircraft tailored to their own requirements”

            “In 2014, the airframe cost went below $100 million for the first time, and the Air Force expected unit costs to fall”

            “In 2014, the GAO found that the F-35 fleet would have operating costs 79% higher than the aircraft it replaced.[154] The latest Selected Acquisition Report stated that the program cost has increased 43% from 2001 with Program Acquisition Unit Cost up 68% and Unit Recurring Flyaway up 41%”

            and my favorite:

            “As of 2014, software development remains the “number one technical challenge” for the F-35″

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lockheed_Martin_F-35_Lightning_II

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The F-16, F-15, and F/A-18 will all continue to be built for awhile. All are relatively cheap and excellent in their roles.

          • 0 avatar
            hubcap

            What a boondoggle. It gives you a greater appreciation of what Kelly Johnson was able to accomplish with the U-2, A-12 and SR-71 and later Ben Rich with the F-117.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Indeed. Thinking about this makes me think what the 1950/60s generation of aircraft engineers on both sides achieved was phenomenal in comparison. Aircraft which entered service then are still in service today and will be for decades to come.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The A-12 went from initial concept to flight in two years, WITHOUT COMPUTERS being used for design!!!!!

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Honestly I don’t think its the use of computers, I think its the current crop of engineers. Their fail is being felt in both the automotive and defense industries.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            It’s not the engineers. It’s the people running the companies. It’s more about the shareholders, profit, and how much cash is going in their pocket instead of the product. Add a supply chain that no one at Lockheed seems to care about, and you are [email protected]

            There are engineers at GM that could make whatever car better. But they have to use certain parts, can only spend so much money on engineering/design, GM contracts the cheapest supplier, and knowledge has been sucked out of some factories. This isn’t unique to GM either.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Was this somehow different in the West between say 1960 and 1990? How is it those other programs were completed?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Because the Pentagon is not spending our tax dollars wisely and is giving billions of dollars to a handful of companies that don’t have competition. What urgency does Lockheed have? The Pentagon is paying for cost overruns.

            Also, as designing things is more dependent on computers and programming, the Pentagon is having products developed before they are fully baked. Platforms are often based about weapons systems that don’t exist yet. The Navy has a new super carrier that has a catapult that was never tested before. It existed in digital form, so people assumed that it would work.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            @bball

            I realize many Soviet weapons systems were sh*t but they are laughing at us because their good systems work and can be produced much cheaper than ours. Meanwhile the Chinese steal our IP and secrets while we continue to spend more money for less return. Whatever the Russian weapon designers are doing should be studied, seriously. The Wehrmacht tanks had a much higher kill ratio but ultimately they were defeated by the cheap T-34 (among other factors).

            Pentagon fail and oligopoly aside, on an even playing field what is better, 100 F18s or 10 F-35s?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            15 F-22s :)

      • 0 avatar
        MeJ

        “…The C7 is truly world class in every aspect…”

        Except reliability, blown engines, blown tranny’s, overheating, orange peel paint jobs…

        (And believe it or not I used to love Corvettes)

    • 0 avatar
      hubcap

      “But mechanical reliability was a very high price to pay to address the other issues.”

      I had no clue the jury was in on that issue. Geez, can’t a guy step out to attend to some business without the sky fallin’ down.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    “Our best guess is that it will sticker close to the $400,000 Ford GT and Lamborghini Aventador.”

    HAHAHA

    You best change the badge on the front then. Corvette can’t carry no $400,000. That’s over $130,000 more than an Aston Martin Vanquish.

    • 0 avatar
      tonyola

      So how about calling it the Chaparral?

      http://media.chevrolet.com/media/us/en/chevrolet/news.detail.html/content/Pages/news/us/en/2014/Nov/1119-chaparral.html

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        I’d be okay with that. The word Corvette to my mind conjures up old guys in C4 automatics, wiping their fingerprints off the door with their beige Polo shirt after they get out.

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    The Corvette’s original front engine layout was designed to maximize use of GM pickup parts-bin plus other GM cars, and if it handled “great”, bonus!

    It also had to look fast, sexy and fun. It accomplished all of those to a great degree, on the way to becoming “America’s Sports car”, while hitting the right note with rock stars and celebrities of all sorts. What else are they gonna be seen in, a Camaro?

    But the Corvette was never designed for maximum performance at the track, from a chassis layout perspective.

    So to be truly “World Class”, and command the spotlight (from the Ford GT, Lambos, etc), not to mention $400,000, mid engine.

  • avatar
    jdmcomp

    Corvette misses the super car label by quite a bit as it now stands, being noisy, uncomfortable and poorly assembled. It is however, cheap (note the above as the reason why.) I cannot blame GM for any of this as the buyers still overlook all of this for cheap thrills. The auto press also bows down to the fun of hooning these plastic marvels to death and then still bragging about how good they are.

  • avatar
    Ol Shel

    If it looks like the prototype, I’m in.

    I have no intereste in a corvettey-looking generic supercar.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      If it’s a heavily modded Holden mid-engine pickup, you’re in? Yeah, so am I!

      Corvettes have never had any appeal to me. Zero. But a Corvette with a tonneau cover??

      If you knew me, and knowing Corvette specs, you’d think otherwise. They just don’t move the needle.

      Except I was completely and totally sucked in by the 1st generation MR2 (not the 2nd or 3rd gen spiders), which was a heavily modded Corolla chassis, engine in the back seat.


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