2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray: BoldRide Breakdown
Last night, we brought you the live reveal of the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette, and Chevy did not disappoint. To much fanfare, including an over-the-top guitar solo, the seventh-generation, or C7, Corvette was shown to the world, as was a return of an old name; "Stingray." Considering that we're exiting the "retro" design era that dominated the mid-to-late 2000's, it is an odd time to bring back such a name, but it's here, and here's what you need to know. The new 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray will be powered by the previously reported LT1 V8 engine. It is still 6.2-liters, like the outgoing V8 small-block and its estimated to produce 450 horsepower and 450 pound feet of torque. The engine features direct injection and cylinder deactivation to achieve better fuel economy. Power is sent to the rear wheels through either a seven-speed manual transmission or an available six-speed automatic, operated by steering-wheel mounted paddle shifters.
Visually, the C7 is a major design overhaul and looks like no Corvette before it. The overall appearance is, well, busy. The rear end looks like a Camaro, but worked over by a tuning house. But this was no tuning house, and we were REALLY hoping that the vented hood and black taillight mascara were part of the Z51 package. We're afraid these design elements will be employed across the lineup.
Inside, the cabin is finally attractive. Previously, to call the Corvette's interior "spartan" would be a grave understatement. The interior was the major shortcoming of the C6 Corvette. Everything gets soft-touch materials, while the choice of either comfort-oriented GT seats or race-ready Competition sport seats tailors to multiple driving styles.
The Chevrolet Corvette is arguably the best example of a halo car. It is the top of the performance pile for an automaker and its purpose (aside from the obvious performance credentials) is to draw buyers seeking other classes of car into Chevy dealerships, with the hopes that the Corvette's DNA rubbed off on other cars. While the Viper has come and gone, and you can argue whether the Mustang is a REAL halo car, the Corvette has always stood as the symbolic spearhead for General Motors.
That symbolism means that the Corvette belongs to the fans, as much as it does the actual owners and builders of the car. Chevy can't step outside certain constraints in formula, layout and design. What you see here is about as much as you can change the Corvette without rewriting what it's all about. Only time will tell if the fans embrace it, but it appears to have set the sportscar world ablaze overnight.