In a Car & Driver interview with GM’s Vice Chairman Bob Lutz, GM’s great pontificator spoke about the development process of the Blue Devil/SS Corvette. Apparently, development of the fastest Corvette yet is moving through the development stages and nearling completion. That’s a good thing to hear considering that GM has frozen the development of other large and powerful rear-wheel drive cars due to the proposed new CAFE regulations. The freeze has put the brakes on the next Chevy Impala and several Cadillac models. But development of the Blue Devil/SS is very much on track, according to Lutz:
“It’s a very difficult vehicle development. This thing has so much power that we have to explore a dynamic envelope that we’ve never explored before. We want the vehicle to be safe and we want it to be predictable, even at speeds that no mortal is ever going to attain in the United States. That’s our obligation. We’re really into a speed and power realm that General Motors has never been in before. Weâ€™re way up there with Porsche Carrera GTs and Ferraris.”One question not yet settled is the horsepower rating for the new Corvette.
In terms of horsepower, Lutz said: “We’re certainly not going to be at 600 because some of our competition is at 600. So, 600 is a number that is not satisfactory for us. I would say comfortably in excess of 600 is the way I would term it.” As for 700 horses, “that would be a stretch. Tom Stephens (GMâ€™s head of powertrain) would say, ‘maybe in the second year.'”Expectations are the Corvette Blue Devil/SS will make its debut early next year at one of the large autoshows (NAIAS anyone?) and will be produced as a 2009 model.
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