2021 Chevrolet Corvette Reviews

2021 Corvette New Car Test Drive

The following review is for a 2020 Model Year. There may be minor changes to current model you are looking at.

Introduction

Chevrolet topped the news from the automotive world with its announcement of the boldly redesigned 2020 Corvette Stingray. Echoing a long-ago prediction by Zora Arkus-Duntov, considered the “father” of the Corvette, the C8 generation has switched to a mid-engine configuration. After nearly 70 years, the conventional front-engine, rear-wheel-drive layout has faded into history. 

Adopting such a radical change gives Chevy license to claim supercar-level performance for the Corvette, known throughout its life as “America's sports car.” Bountiful power and intensified traction have reduced 0-60 mph acceleration to a startling 2.9 seconds, in a Corvette equipped with the Z51 package. 

As before, the Corvette comes in coupe and convertible form, but a manual transmission is no longer available. For now, every Corvette Stingray gets the same 6.2-liter V-8 engine. Fitted with a new aluminum block, it generates 490 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque. Adding the Z51 package boosts output to 495 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. 

The electronically controlled 8-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission can be shifted manually using steering-wheel paddles. A low-ratio first gear was developed to take advantage of the V-8's available power. Middle-range gears (2 through 6) are close-ratio, but tall top gears promise greater fuel economy ? similar to that of the outgoing Corvette. 

Considering the available power, fuel economy isn't horrible. The Corvette is EPA-rated at 15 mpg city, 27 highway, and 19 combined. Under light load conditions, half of the cylinders shut down to boost fuel economy a bit. 

Although the Corvette has adopted GM's latest electrical architecture, some vital active safety features have been omitted: most notably, forward-collision warnings and automatic emergency braking. Such an omission is troubling, considering that many moderately-priced cars now make those items available, and often standard. 

Only front and side airbags, a rearview camera, and rear parking sensors are standard on the base Corvette. The 2LT and 3LT trim levels add GM's rear camera mirror, a surround-view camera system, blind-spot monitors, and rear cross-traffic alert. 

Outward visibility has improved with the new mid-engine design, creating clearer sightlines to both the front ? past a hood that falls away quickly ? and the sides. The mid-engine design places the driver farther forward than usual, creating a better sense of where the car is headed. 

Views through the rear window, in contrast, are restricted. That's a problem with the base model, but upper trim levels include a rear camera mirror that provides a clear display of the rearward view. 

Lineup

The Corvette is offered in three trim levels: 1LT, 2LT, and 3LT. Prices include a $1,095 destination charge. 

The base 1LT starts at $59,995 and comes with LED headlights, leather upholstery, 19-inch front and 20-inch rear alloy wheels, a 12.0-inch digital instrument cluster, eight-way power-adjustable seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, a power tilt-and-telescopic steering column, a 4G LTE wi-fi hotspot, a 10-speaker Bose audio system, HD and satellite radio, Bluetooth, and an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. 

The $67,295 2LT adds heated and cooled seats with power lumbar adjustment, a heated steering wheel, memory for both seats, a 14-speaker Bose audio system, navigation, a surround-view camera system, a head-up display, GM's rear camera mirror, and wireless charging. 

The 3LT costs $71,945 and comes with GT2 bucket seats, extended leather upholstery, and synthetic suede wrapped upper panels. A Performance Data Recorder can take video and report track lap times. 

For $5,000, the Z51 Performance Package includes a performance-tuned suspension with threaded spring seats to adjust dampers, bigger brakes, additional cooling, a unique axle ratio, and a performance exhaust. Magnetic Selective Ride Control also is available. 

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