Central Valley Corvettes - March 2015 Magazine

cfosnaugh

Central Valley Corvettes of Fresno - March 2015

‘In the Garage’ with Charlie Fosnaugh

The Chevrolet Corvette (Possibly) Goes Mid-Engine

By Arthur St. Antoine, Automobile Magazine - February 25, 2015

It seems a mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette has been in the works ever since, well, ever since

there was a Corvette.

After joining GM shortly after the ’Vette’s debut in 1953, Corvette chief engineer Zora

Arkus-Duntov soon began scheming for a mid-engine version. He understood the

responsive handling afforded by such a layout, but despite numerous internal design studies

over the ensuing decades, some development stops and starts, a few mid-engine Corvette

concepts, and always-rampant rumors that a mid-engine package was “right around the

corner,” no such car ever materialized. During development it seemed the

current Chevrolet Corvette C7 might finally take up the mid-engine mantle until budget

considerations axed the project.

Now the rumors are alive again, especially since the introduction of the mid-engine Ford

GT at the Detroit auto show. An intriguing prototype has been spied, and Chevy insiders

aren’t swatting aside the giddy conjecture it’s caused. More to the point, a mid-engine

Corvette at last makes business sense. As evidenced by our track drive in the Corvette Z06,

650 hp is nearing the limits for a front-engine design to handle. What’s more, a younger

generation of potential buyers doesn’t care that “a ’Vette has to look like a ’Vette.” Probably

they’d rather its proportions more closely resembled a McLaren. Or a Ferrari. Or even a

Porsche Cayman.

Due date? If the project doesn’t stall, look for a mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette to bow as a

top-tier model of the Corvette C8 in 2017. A version of the current small-block V-8 is almost

assured; a dual-clutch transmission with shift paddles on the steering wheel will likely also

appear. Were he still around, the “Father of the Corvette” would love the rumored name for

the mid-engine car: Zora ZR1.

URL: http://www.automobilemag.com/features/magazine/1505-the-chevrolet-corvetteprobably-goes-mid-engine/#ixzz3T5hVsb6Z

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