When Porsche introduced the Cayenne, the SUV was met with a sea of laughter. No one had attempted a sports-oriented utility vehicle before; on paper, the idea sounded totally daft. Yet Porsche quickly proved everyone wrong. Sales of the model have remained relatively consistent in both the United States and Europe since its 2002 production launch — paving the way for similar products around the globe.
While most of these models have taken the form of amped-up versions of mainstream SUVs and crossovers, a swell of performance utilities are blurring the line. Ferrari is supposedly working on an SUV called the Purosangue, Lamborghini developed the Urus, and Ford will reveal its “ Mustang-inspired” crossover later this month.
During General Motors’ third-quarter earnings call, one analyst wondered if the manufacturer wanted to follow suit with a utility vehicle modeled after the Corvette. Sure, it sounds crazy, but so did those other aforementioned vehicles at one time.
The poor server at the Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Convertible launch had just dumped an entire tray of backwash onto her chest, thanks to the raucous, deafening, unholy rumble of the C8.R Corvette that had been started and revved up nearly fifty feet away from her. I stifled my laugh and reassured her from my nearby hi-top table.
“Don’t worry,” I said to her as she stood there shaking with a combination of laughter and disgust. “I don’t think anybody else saw that.”
If you want to read all about how great the new Corvette Stingray Convertible is, I encourage you to go to your web browser and read any one of the literally hundreds of stories that were posted the instant the embargo dropped last night. There, you will be able to read all about the nearly 500 horsepower and the 3-second zero-to-60 times and the 16-second-folding-hardtop and the $67,499 price tag, plus you’ll be able to see some very flattering photos of an orange Vette that have been photoshopped within a pixel of their lives. I was doing “Triometrics” at the hotel while everybody else was breathlessly regurgitating the stats, so I apologize that you’re only getting this vital information this morning instead of last night.
But, if you want to read about how the Corvette Stingray Convertible is the ugliest, most Playskool looking car I’ve ever seen in person, plus some stuff about how the C8.R shows us how terribly executed the coupe/convertible is, stick around and click the jump.
With the Corvette ZR1 currently off the table, Chevrolet has eased the existing Stingray into a comfortable 450 to 650 horsepower. While that might be enough to trounce just about anything you might encounter on the daily commute, it doesn’t have the necessary might to embarrass a Lamborghini Aventador with total assurance.
That’s unfortunate, as one of the Corvette’s best attributes is being able to bully European exotics sitting at a much higher price point. While America does have a handful of muscle and pony cars that can do the job, the majority would have trouble accomplishing that feat going any direction other than straight. So, with Dodge’s Viper now absent from the automotive landscape, we could really use the ZR1 right about now.
Fortunately, it’s coming soon and it’s bringing 750 horsepower with it.
(From “HW” comes a tale of a Corvette, a hot-blooded Alfa Veloce, and a young Italian wife with romance on her mind.)
Sam, a good friend of mine, had lusted after a particular 1965 Corvette Stingray, and had somehow finally acquired the object of his desires. However, the cost of putting on 23 coats of a gorgeous, dark, lipstick red paint and clear coat, of making mechanical improvements, and paying for necessary auto insurance (Sam was under 25 and single) kept him totally broke for a period of time.
We had a lot of fun running around Louisiana in the ‘Vette, but his automotive mistress was keeping him in the poorhouse. Sam wasn’t some rich kid, so he reluctantly decided to sell his mistress. But he had a plan. He would get another car before he sold the ‘Vette. That way he could hold out for the best money on his beauty.
Not too long ago, General Motors brought comfort to many a new 2015 Corvette Stingray owner with a feature that would do for them what teddy-bear cams did for concerned parents, recording audio, video and vehicle data when the key was given to the valet. Alas, the spyware could land the owner in legal hot water in a dozen states, to say the least.
Production on the all new seventh generation 2014 Corvette Stingray has begun, though they haven’t officially gone on sale yet while the inventory pipeline fills. It’s the first time in decades that the Stingray name has been used by the Corvette. However, it turns out that you can buy a brand new Stingray right now, and for only about $7,000. There’s just one catch. It’s not a Corvette, made by Chevy or even sold in the United States.