Unpopular opinion: The base Corvette Stingray is better than the Z06. Hear me out. The 460-horsepower LT1 engine is plenty, and works really well with the standard car’s chassis – the Z06 just feels like total overkill by comparison. This new Grand Sport, then, should prove to be the real sweet spot of the range, using the base Stingray’s V8 with a host of Z06-esque aerodynamic and performance upgrades. Plus, we now know it’ll cost $66,445, which may be $11,000 more than the base Stingray, but it’s a full $13,000 less than the supercharged Z06.
With the Grand Sport, you get new front fenders, a wider track, a wide body kit, an aero package for added downforce, an upgraded cooling package, an electronic limited-slip differential, and Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires. If that doesn’t sound good enough, Chevrolet will also sell you a GS with the Z07 package, which adds outrageously grippy Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires. Chevy says the standard Grand Sport’s upgrades are enough to allow the car to pull up to 1.05 Gs of cornering force. The Z07 pack ups that to 1.2 Gs. That’s serious stuff.
It’s no slouch in a straight line, either. The Grand Sport Z07 will allegedly run a 0-60 time of 3.6 seconds and can rip off a 11.8-second quarter mile at 118 miles per hour. You’ll need the eight-speed automatic transmission to run those numbers, though – Chevy hasn’t released performance specs for the seven-speed manual-equipped car.
You can have all that with the wind in your hair, too – the Corvette Grand Sport Convertible starts at $70,445. A Heritage package includes hashmark fender graphics, and a Collector Edition (pictured above in Watkins Glen Gray with blue accents) will be available later this year. It’s unclear if that car will carry any special price premium.
Look for the Grand Sport models to arrive at U.S. dealers in the summer. If you’re considering a Z06, trust us, you'd be smart to look at this Grand Sport. It should be a real honey for those who can get behind the idea that less is sometimes more.
Gallery: 2017 Chevy Corvette Grand Sport
2017 CORVETTE GRAND SPORT PRICED AT $66,445
Track-focused model offers 1.2g cornering, 3.6-sec. 0-60 time with Z07 package
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – Chevrolet announced today the track-bred 2017 Corvette Grand Sport will be priced at $66,445 for coupe models and $70,445 for convertibles, when they go on sale this summer. The prices include the destination charge, but not tax, title and other dealer fees.
With heritage-inspired design cues combined with track-focused chassis and suspension elements, the new Grand Sport builds on a legacy established in 1963, when five Grand Sport race cars were built under the direction of the Corvette’s first chief engineer, Zora Arkus-Duntov.
“The racing DNA of the original Grand Sport race cars is in the 2017 model, adding greater dimensions of capability and driver involvement to the Corvette’s award-winning architecture, for a purer driving experience,” said Harlan Charles, Corvette product marketing manager. “It is a worthy successor to the spirit of the originals.”
The 2017 Grand Sport’s lightweight architecture, downforce-producing aerodynamics package, enhanced cooling package, electronic limited-slip differential and Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires combine to offer a Chevrolet-estimated 1.05g in cornering capability – and up to 1.2g with the available Z07 package, which includes Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires.
The new Grand Sport also offers estimated 0-60-mph performance of 3.6 seconds and quarter-mile capability of 11.8 seconds at 118 mph, with the available Z07 performance package and available paddle-shift eight-speed automatic transmission. A seven-speed manual with Active Rev Match is standard.
Further, engineers adapted the Brembo braking system from the Corvette Z06 to give it estimated 60-0-mph performance of less than 100 feet with the available Z07 package, which adds carbon ceramic-matrix brake rotors, along the PS Cup 2 tires.
In addition to the track-focused chassis and suspension components, the Grand Sport features unique exterior elements, including specific front fender inserts and Z06-style grille, as well as wider fenders and rear quarter panels to accommodate a wider track.
Grand Sport models are offered with the Stingray’s full exterior and interior color palette, including 10 exterior colors:
Admiral Blue Metallic (late 2016 addition)
Watkins Glen Gray Metallic (new for 2017)
Black Rose Metallic (new for 2017)
Sterling Blue Metallic (new for 2017)
Long Beach Red Metallic Tintcoat
Blade Silver Metallic
Corvette Racing Yellow Tintcoat
An available Heritage package includes hash-mark fender graphics in six colors, with the hash mark detail carried onto the interior’s brushed aluminum trim. Full-length stripes are also offered in five colors. They are joined by the available Z07 package, five wheel choices and available carbon fiber ground effects to offer a wide and diverse range of customizable choices.
“The choices are almost endless,” said Charles. “The Corvette Grand Sport’s custom ordering options take personalization to an unprecedented level, enabling customers to create their own Corvette Grand Sport statement.”
A Grand Sport Collector Edition will be offered later in the model year, featuring Watkins Glen Gray Metallic exterior with Tension Blue hash-mark graphics, satin black full-length stripes, black wheels and a unique Tension Blue full leather and suede-wrapped interior. A three-dimensional representation of an original Grand Sport race car is embossed in the headrests and that shape is also used on an instrument panel plaque that carries a unique build sequence number.