The mid-engined Corvette will arrive in July. Here's everything you need to know.
More anticipated than the Toyota Supra, Ford Bronco, and every new Star Wars film combined, Chevrolet will debut its long-awaited mid-engined Corvette after more than a half-century of teasing and empty promises. Don't worry, we have plenty of photos and videos as proof of its existence. More than that in fact – we know when and where the camouflage wrap will finally come off. Save the date for July 18, because Chevrolet has a special event planned in Southern California.
While we all wait impatiently for that day to arrive here's everything you need to know until then.
What Is It?
It all started with a prototype. In 1964, Zora Arkus-Duntov (father of the Corvette) built the XP-819, a mid-engined vision of what the Corvette could be. Multiple mid-engined Corvette prototypes followed, and more than 50 years later, we're finally seeing the near-production prototypes in action.
Our first look at the mid-engined C8 Corvette came in 2016. Soon after that, it seemed like photos and videos of the vehicle popped up monthly. Now with dozens of spy photos, artist renderings, and multiple videos, we're closer than ever to the production model.
By all accounts, it will be the most hardcore Corvette ever. Chevrolet will offer the mid-engined Corvette with a range of power options (potentially even a hybrid variant). It's Chevy's answer to European super coupes like the McLaren 720S and Ferrari F8 Tributo, and American competitors like the Ford GT.
What Does It Look Like?
The renderings above from our friends at MidEngineCorvetteForum.com are based on numerous spy shots of prototypes, and though details might vary, it should look a lot like what you see here. It could even have a targa top, and a convertible is expected at some point as well. But just because the engine is moving behind the cockpit, don't expect a huge departure from the current design language, outside of proportions. These renderings, along with many others, borrow heavily from the current C7.
Most of the early prototypes don't give us a ton of clues as to its final design. But recent spy shots show what appears to be production front and rear design elements, while the rest of the body remains covered in camouflage. Overall, the C8 maintains the Corvette's signature sporty shape, while sharper headlights, and extended rear, and new wheels, among other things, should separate it from the current version.
What Will It Be Called?
Outside of "Corvette," the new C8 could have a few different names. The base model will likely retain the name "Stingray," while the range-topping model could adopt the "Zora" moniker. Early in the mid-engined Corvette's testing, some referred to it internally as "Emperor," but we don't expect that name to carry over to production trim.
What's Under The Hood?
Probably the mid-engined Corvette's most widely varying detail is the engine. Chevy hasn't confirmed anything yet, but reports suggest the coupe could come with three engine options. The entry-level engine should be a naturally aspirated 6.2-liter V8 producing somewhere around 460 horsepower (343 kilowatts). Reports hint at a new twin-turbo overhead-cam V8 with a flat-plane crankshaft, possibly producing 650 hp (485 kW).
At the top of the Corvette range, a twin-turbo 5.5-liter V8 with up to 850 hp (634 kW) is likely. Other rumors hint at a 1,000-hp (745-kW) all-wheel-drive hybrid version, but there isn't a ton of evidence to back up those claims just yet. Also, don't' expect a manual transmission. GM's patent for a new clutch-by-wire system means the Corvette could get a fancy new dual-clutch gearbox exclusively.
How Much Will It Cost?
A new report from Hagerty says the C8 Corvette will start at around $60,000 to $70,000. Considering the current Corvette Stingray starts at $55,900, and the range-topping ZR1 is a relative performance bargain at $118,900, a $60,000 starting price sounds reasonable. Prices for the mid-engined Corvette vary wildly, though, depending on reports.
Some say the C8 Corvette could cost as much as $170,000. But, our best guess is that only high-end models will hit the six-figure mark. With a range of engine options, it's possible those numbers could represent both a starting price and a range-topping option, but we'll have to wait for confirmation from Chevy to be sure.
Some Chevy dealers, like Kerbeck Chevrolet in New Jersey, are already taking pre-orders for the mid-engined ‘Vette. On its website, the dealer asks for a $1,000 refundable deposit but doesn't have any actual pricing info.
When Will We See It?
July 18, 2019 is the magic date revealed by GM as when the covers will officially be lifted. As for the location, media and VIP invitations went out at the beginning of May for an event in Orange County, California. Unless you're on this short list of attendees you'll have to wait a bit longer to see the new supercar in person, but Motor1.com will be there to bring you live photos and video.
Production of the C8 Corvette should then kick off late in 2019, with customers receiving their cars sometime early to mid-2020.