Corvette C8 Stingray: mid engine
The Corvette C8 adopts a mid engine layout.
After years of rumours, camouflaged mules spy shots, then camouflaged mules official shot, it is the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing that Chevrolet chose to unveil the new mid engine C8 Corvette. Since the 1960s, astronauts have been driving Corvettes, hence the legitimacy of the historical reference.
Why a mid engine layout ? The official line is that the C7 brought the front mid engine configuration to its optimum in terms of performance and could not be improved upon. As a result, V8 and occupants are trading places, but the wheelbase only increases slightly:
|Corvette C7||Corvette C8|
The new LT2 V8 bucks the trend toward forced induction and remains naturally aspirated. Displacement remains identical but the new unit gains in power and, for the first time on an entry level Stingray, gains a dry sump lubrication system. It is mated to a new 8 gear dual clutch gearbox. The first gear is shorter to exploit the increased traction of the mid engine layout, while 7th and 8th are tall to improve gas freeway gas mileage. GM claims a sub 3 seconds 0-60 mph (96 km/h) acceleration with the optional Z51 package, the fastest of any Corvette in history. The limited slip differential is electronically controlled.
|C7 Stingray – LT1||C8 Stingray – LT2|
|Engine||V8 6162 cm3||V8 6162 cm3|
|Power||466 / 6000||495 / 6450|
|Torque||630 / 4600||637 / 5150|
|Acceleration||0-100 km/h: 4.2s||0-96 km/h: 3.0s|
The chassis is in aluminum, with large casted parts supporting each wheel and connected by a central backbone. The shorter steering column is stiffer, and repositioning the driver 42cm forward sharpens the perception of chassis reactions. A new Magnetic Ride Control 4.0 suspension system is available as an option. Tires are 245/35ZR19 front, 305/30ZR20 rear, with Michelin Pilot Sport ALS on the standard Stingray or Pilot Sport 4S with the Z51 pack.