14 January 2013

Chevrolet Corvette C7 Stingray Revealed

There's new Chevrolet in town, and it is not the new Cruze or Orlando. It is the legendary Corvette, the seventh iteration of the iconic American sportscar. Styled to impress the newer generation of performance car buyer who has been spoilt by the edgy design paired to explosive performance, C7 Corvette wears a well-cut suit.

The front end of the the new Chevrolet Corvette Stingray wears an familar traditional face, but has been made crisper with a strong characterline. The bodyline continues to rise towards the back, where the traditional wrap-around rear glass has been ditched, and in comes a normal C-pillar that also housed the rear quarter glass, previously unfound on any Corvette except the earliest coupe model. The rear end too is controversially new, where the quad-rounded rear light has been replaced with a squarer, recessed unit. Quad tail pipes complete the dramatic rear end styling.

The new Corvette retain the familiar chassis architecture of removable targa roof, but it is also packed with innovative construction. The hood and the removable roof are made of carbon fibre, while the fender, doors, rear quarter panel and some underbody panel are manufactured from composites. The body structure is aluminium and the weight distribution has been optimized for perfect 50:50 balance front to rear. 

The chassis main frame is composed of five aluminium segments including and extrusion panel at each end and centre main rail jointed by cast nodes at suspension interface points. Each segment thickness is tuned to meet their respective strength requirement, thus thickness vary from 2mm to 11mm. These results in 45kg weight saving, plus it is also 57% stiffer. More photos and details after the jump.

The powertrain unit is an all-new LT1 6.2L V8 small-block unit. It is equipped with a host of power and efficiency enhancer such as direct injection, Active Fuel Management and continuously variable valve timing. The unit delivers 450hp and 610Nm, sufficient to propel the C7 Corvette to 100km/h in around 4s. Drive is channelled to the rear wheel via 6 speed automatic or 7 speed manual gearbox with rev-matching function.

The suspension setup retain the transverse leaf spring unit, a hallmark of Corvette generations since forever. The arms are racing proven SLA with the lower arms hollowed out. The wheels size 18 x 8.5 inch up front, and 19 x 10 at the back for standard configuration. Braking power is provided by Brembo 320mm disc at the front and 338mm at the back.

The interior is where Chevrolet has concerted its effort the most. The last Corvette was criticized for its appalling cabin where the mediocre design and material are badly used. The new one aimed to changed that, and, apart from Audi R8-inspired arching fascia, trimmed in high quality material that include hand crafted leather upholstery and carbon fibre and aluminium garnish. Seat frames are magnesium to save weight.

Small gallery can be found below.


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