When we talk about the performance of American automobiles, the first that comes to mind is the Corvette. The C8 Stingray challenges its rivals with its design, performance, and driving features.
Automobiles in the super class display significant differences according to the country they are manufactured. Or at least that was the case until recently. American cars in which high-volume atmospheric motors were used, were known as automobiles that displayed a high performance on straight roads, but were difficult to control on bends. Although they contained the latest innovations in terms of technology, the materials and workmanship quality were poor. Whereas their European rivals used both atmospheric and turbo motors and offered models that stood out not only with performance, but also with their vehicle-handling features. These cars that used the latest technology were also pioneers in redetermining the standards in materials and workmanship quality. The Japanese automobiles had a simpler design and offered performance at a reasonable price, mainly meeting automobile enthusiasts’ expectation of “excitement.” While the differences were felt so distinctly in the past, today this gap has gradually closed because the European models are being taken as examples. The best example is the new Corvette C8 Stingray model.
The F-35 Has Landed
Even though it was stressed that no special effort was made to move away from the Corvette’s characteristic design with the new model that looks like a cross between a Ferrari and Lamborghini, a look at a photograph and you can decide for yourselves how successful they were in achieving this. Thanks to the lines created with inspiration from a F-35 fighter jet, the C8 Stingray appears to be gaining speed even when it’s stationary. It also contains details from F1 racing cars.
The position of the motor in the back stands out as one of the most important features of the new model. This is a first in the brand’s history. Possibly the reason behind this decision was the idea of earning a better place in the super sport class that is dominated by its Italian rivals.
Moving the motor from the front to the back provided the Corvette with better weight distribution, and therefore better vehicle handling. The removal of the motor from the front allowed lowering of the bonnet, and widening the visibility angle made the car easier to use. Thanks to the changes, the cockpit sits more forward (42 cm). As the driver seat is at the car’s center of gravity, this enables the driver to feel the car’s response uninterruptedly, allowing better control.
The 12-inch digital instrument panel that can be personalized, and the cool information-entertainment screen accompanying this makes the fighter jet theme continue in the inner space. Another point that stands out is the increase in material quality. There is the choice between aluminum and carbon fiber for the dashboard and inner door covers. The G8 Stingray offers a vast range of personalization: there are six color choices for the seatbelt, and apart from the standard grey, there are two color alternatives, red and yellow for the stitching. As for the seats, there are three alternatives to choose from according to your preferred automobile usage, including the most comfortable GT1, the GT2 that combines comfort and performance, and the track-driving Competition Sport.
One of the main features distinguishing the new Corvette from the old generation models is the new mid-rear mounted V8 that produces a 495 hp without turbo support. The C8 Stingray goes from 0 to 60 mph/100 km in less than three seconds, and reaches a top speed of 194 mph (312 km/h). So imagine what will happen when the ZR1 version is on the agenda.
Chevrolet gave as much importance to appearance as it did to motor performance. Mounted under a 3.2 mm thick glass panel on the rear hatch so the owner can show off the engine proudly, the 6.2-liter motor is paired with an 8 speed dual-clutch automatic transmission DTC gearbox, another first for the brand. The new gearbox adapts itself to the user’s driving characteristics. It is possible to keep track of the car’s performance. The gear transition occurs at a higher rpm than programmed, independent of the selected driving mode. Aborting the standard gear shifter, buttons giving a more modern appearance were used for park, reverse, and drive. In the new model, two new driving mode alternatives were added to the existing Weather, Tour, Sport, and Track driving modes. The MyMode, a configurable setting for programming the preferred driving style, and the Z Mode, allowing adjustments to the motor settings and activating of the steering wheel, will particularly delight drivers that want full control. Another detail that will be a hit with performance-focused drivers is the Performance Data Recorder (PDR). This allows you to analyze the rights and wrongs after laps on the course, and develop your driving style. Another benefit of the camera recording system is that it leaves no questions unanswered when you give the car to a valet.
Chevrolet also offers the Z51 Performance Package for those who want more than the standard specs. This alternative offers a different performance exhaust system with larger brakes and a larger back spoiler, as well as the option of the Magnetic Ride Control feature that includes electronically controlled dampers. The system increases comfort with normal use, and when things become more serious on winding roads and you put your foot down, it automatically changes character in a split second enabling the automobile better grip of the road. As you approach road bumps, to prevent any damage to the body that looks as if it will touch the ground, the front bumper can be risen by 40 mm with the touch of a button (in 2.8 seconds).
Another feature that makes the Stingray different is the removable roof panel that can be concealed in the rear trunk when you want to integrate with nature. Although the luggage space is reduced because of the motor’s new position, the second trunk added in the front (375 l) offers sufficient space for short journeys. In brief, the new Corvette Stingray combines all the features of the super sport class with comfort, making it suitable for daily use. We will have to wait to see to what extent the electronic systems, which have become an absolute must today, influence the traditional American style that depends more on the driver’s skills and manpower.