We caught up with Corvette Product Marketing Manager Harlan Charles at the 2011 12 Hours of Sebring and he graciously gave us a few minutes to talk about a variety of subjects relating to Corvettes. Some of the topics we discussed include the latest changes for the current 2011 model year, the new Corvette Z06X track concept car and the progress of the C7 Corvette.
More good news from General Motors regarding Corvettes. Sales of America’s sports car continue to gain momentum as outlined in GM’s monthly sales report for March 2011. 1,163 Corvettes were delivered last month, a 17.3% increase over the 955 Corvettes delivered during March 2010. This was the best sales month for Corvettes since July 2010 and the first 1,000+ selling month since October 2010. For the calendar year, Corvette sales were 2,839, a 16.7% increase over last year’s 2,433 Corvettes sold January-March 2010.
Nissan’s GT-R made a run in 2009 against the ZR1 on the world famous Nordschleife and they came within .3 of a second of the Corvette’s 7:26.4 lap. Two years later, the newly upgraded 2012 GT-R goes at it again, this time besting the Corvette by two seconds with a 7:24.22 lap. Check out the laps after the jump.
Definitely the most talked about story this week is the huge crash of the 230 mph Corvette Z06 at the Texas Mile. Hinson Motorsports was running the 1400 hp twin-turbo Corvette when it crashed spectacularly off the runway. Posting on Facebook yesterday, Hinson Motorsports promised to release their own footage and they did so today.
When you see the enormity of this crash on video, its amazing that the driver not only lived, but walked away. With 1,400 awe-inspiring horsepower on tap, the Hinson Motorsports twin turbo Corvette Z06 was on its way to breaking speed records at the Texas Mile this weekend when the car left the runway at 230 mph, flipping once and coming to rest on its wheels in the grass.
Becoming an annual tradition, Corvette Product Marketing Manager Harlan Charles and Chief Engineer Tadge Juechter made the trip down to Sebring Florida last weekend to show off some cool Corvette concepts and several 2011 regular production cars as well as give a couple seminars with Corvette owners. The first seminar was held Friday afternoon and the topics were the latest updates on the 2011 Corvette as well as some non-specific C7 Corvette news.
Fans of Corvette and readers of this blog are familiar with the extra attention Corvette owners can receive from the factory as well as some of the advanced personalization options when buying a new Corvette. If you thought the ZR1/Z06 Engine Build Experience was cool, wait until you hear about the new PIN RPO. Yes, Corvette owners can now choose your own VIN. This is great for collectors who want to match an older Corvette’s sequence number with a brand new Corvette. The special RPO does come with a hefty price of $5,000 and like the Engine Build Program, you’ll be working a Corvette concierge to coordinate the special order.
Consumer Reports’ April 2011 edition ranks the Best and Worst of 2011 and the 2011 Corvette Z06 has earned a “best” rating with a score of 92. A car’s overall road-test score is the result of more than 50 individual tests and evaluations from Consumer Reports subscribers. For years we’ve derided Consumer Reports for its negative reviews on Corvette and what looks to be a bias against American-made cars in general. But it looks like the data is in and they can no longer dispute the fact that GM makes a very reliable car and that Corvette owners love them and would buy a Corvette again.