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News

Chevrolet's Ed Peper and the C6.R Corvette

One of our biggest fears in a GM Bankruptcy was that the automaker would be forced to cancel the company’s racing programs including Corvette Racing’s final assault on the GT1 class at the 24 Hours of Le Mans as it focuses on reorganization. But recent comments by GM Vice President of Chevrolet Ed Peper appears to put those fears to rest.

“Win on Sunday, Sell on Monday” is still very much a part of the company’s DNA, Peper told the Detroit’s Free Press. Auto racing will remain “a stout marketing and advertising tool in its reorganization”.

That’s good news as the Corvette Racing team and enthusiasts converge on France next week for the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Corvette Racing will run its pair of Compuware-sponsored Chevy Corvette C6.Rs in the GT1 class and hopes are high that this final GT1 race for the team will end with a 1-2 podium finish.

“The 24 Hours of Le Mans is one of the key marketing activities of the brand,” Peper said. “Corvette is the marquee brand for the company, but we’ve got to get maximum return for minimum spending.”

“We have a great presence in motorsports, but we need the returns to be even better,” Peper said. “I love racing, but the most appealing part of it to me is delivering on sales.”

Peper says the government’s auto task force has not gotten involved in GM’s racing programs during the company’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing. “They concentrated on the core business — they didn’t get into marketing and advertising,” Peper said. “They just wanted us to use good judgment with our promotions.”

Peper says “we race to win, and we get a great return on it.” But, he added, all GM’s racing programs, including NASCAR, will be under pressure to deliver greater efficiencies and return on investment despite tough times.

“We have a great presence in motorsports, but we need the returns to be even better,” Peper said. “I love racing, but the most appealing part of it to me is delivering on sales.”

Practice for Le Mans will take place on June 10th and qualifying will be held on June 11th. The 77th running of the worlds most prestigious sports car race will start on Saturday, June 13th at 3 pm local time (10 am EST) and the checkered flag will drop 24 hours later on Sunday, June 14th. Much of race will be carried by SPEED.



Source:
Detroit Free Press

Related:
Take No Prisoners: The Story of Corvette Racing’s Mascot
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Doug Fehan Talks about Le Mans, Green Challenge and Jake
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing: Gavin and Beretta Win Final ALMS GT1 Race at Long Beach

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GM CEO Fritz Henderson Discusses Corvette's Future

GM CEO Fritz Henderson spoke out again on Corvette through another live chat on GM’s Fastlane blog. The comments on Corvette were the first from GM’s leader since the company entered bankruptcy proceedings earlier this week.

A participant named John asked if the “Corvette will survive as the V8 engined rear wheel drive icon we all love”.

Fritz Henderson’s response:

Yes. My wonderful baby is my 2005 Corvette coupe. We have more in store for the future and this iconic brand will retain its powerful place within the new GM.


Source:
GM FastLane Blog
Photo Credit: Adnan Abidi/Reuters

Related:
GM Bankruptcy: Corvette Plant Safe (for now)
[VIDEO] GM CEO Fritz Henderson Discusses Corvette’s Future

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Official pricing for the 2010 Corvette coupe and convertible models was released today. For those of you trying to decide between ordering one of the regular Coupe or Convertible body styles or going with the new Grand Sport, this price comparison should be helpful. The good news is that pricing for the 2010 is only being increased by $365!

Here is the pricing for the 2010 Corvette Coupe and Convertible models:

  • 2010 Corvette Coupe Base MSRP $49,880 including destination.
  • 2010 Corvette Convertible Base MSRP $54,530 including destination.

As we posted last week, the Grand Sports will open at:

  • 2010 Corvette Grand Sport Coupe Base MSRP $55,720 including destination.
  • 2010 Corvette Grand Sport Convertible Base MSRP $59,530 including destination.

So the difference between the two models for each body style:

  • 2010 Corvette Coupe vs Grand Sport Coupe Price Difference – $5,840
  • 2010 Corvette Convertible vs Grand Sport Convertible Price Difference – $5,000

Pricing for the 2010 Corvette Z06 and ZR1 has not yet been released but we are expecting it shortly.

Thanks goes to Dave Salvatore @ Kerbeck for supplying us with the pricing. If you are interested in ordering a new 2010 Corvette or are looking to deal on remaining 2009′s, give him a call at 877-537-2325 or visit Kerbeck Corvette.


Source
Kerbeck Corvette

Related:
Official 2010 Corvette Grand Sport Pricing Released
Download the 2010 Corvette Order Guide
What’s New for the 2010 Corvette
[VIDEO] Introduction and Reveal of the 2010 Corvette Grand Sport
Exclusive Photo Gallery: The 2010 Corvette Grand Sport

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May 2009 Corvette Sales

by Keith Cornett on June 3, 2009

The news about Corvette sales just keeps getting better. For the fifth straight month, Corvette sales were stronger than the month prior. Chevrolet dealers sold 1,643 Corvettes in May, a 14% increase over April’s 1,407 deliveries. The May 2009 sales figure was also the highest since 2,318 Corvettes were sold in September of 2008.

READ MORE →

GM Bankruptcy: Corvette Plant Safe (for now)

by Keith Cornett on June 1, 2009

Corvette's on the assembly line in Bowling Green

As expected, General Motors filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection this morning in New York. The 100 year old company lists $82 billion in assets and $172 billion in debts. On the positive side, the Corvette plant in Bowling Green was not on the list of the 14 plants that General Motors will close as part of the bankruptcy reorganization.

Tim Lee, Vice President of Manufacturing for GM North America says the company has “100% confidence” in the Corvette and is pleased with the Bowling Green Assembly Plant where the Corvette is made. Speaking in a conference call with media, Lee said the company plans to build the car based on customer demand while noting that demand isn’t great “right now”.

Lee called the Corvette “very, very profitable” and said the Bowling Green plan should continue to annually produce between 35,000 and 50,000 cars.

That figure does seems like a distant memory: 35,310 Corvettes were produced in 2008 but the 2009 production total is expected to be about half that. There is currently no indication that another model will replace the Cadillac XLR which was also built at the plant but was discontinued earlier this year.

The Bowling Green Assembly Plant was also expected to become the home of the Saturn Sky and the Pontiac Solstice in 2012, but those models are expected to be sold or discontinued as part of the reorganization that will focus on the four key brands: Chevy, Cadillac, Buick and GMC.

The Corvette plant is currently closed for a planned two week hiatus.


Source:
Bowling Green Daily News

Related:
More Corvette Comments from GM CEO Henderson
[VIDEO] GM CEO Fritz Henderson Discusses Corvette’s Future
[VIDEO] 2010 Corvette ZR1′s Performance Traction Management System

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2010 Corvette Production Constraints

by Keith Cornett on May 21, 2009

2010 Corvette Production Constraints

The first list of order constraints on the 2010 Corvette are out and we are pleased to see that there are no major options constrained for the new Grand Sport models other than the expected delay of the Z15 Heritage package. It’s normal for the factory to limit some of the new options as production ramps up and for the most part that is what we are seeing. The allocation groups for 2010 have changed slightly as well so that all Corvettes except the ZR1 are in one group and the ZR1 is by itself in another.

Vette Group (Coupe, Convertible, GS Coupe, GS Convertible, Z06)

  • 70U Torch Red Exterior – limited to 54 available
  • US8 Audio System – Single CD with 12 months XM – 22 available
  • Z15 Grand Sport Heritage Package – 0 Available

ZR1 Group

  • 70U Torch Red Exterior – 12 available
  • 10U Artic White Exterior – 3 available
  • 89U Crystal Red Exterior – 3 available

In regards to the Grand Sport Heritage Package, the Z15 option includes two-tone leather seats, Grand Sport logo seat headrest embroidery and dealer-installed fender stripe hash marks. GM told us at the NCM’s C5/C6 Birthday Bash that this package probably wouldn’t be available until sometime in the Fall of 2009. We do understand that the Hash Marks will be available through dealers as part of the Corvette Genuine Accessories catalog.

Although 2010 Corvette pricing hasn’t been made public yet (expect another 2 weeks or so), dealers can and are taking 2010 Corvette orders. If you are interested in ordering a 2010 Corvette including the new Grand Sport, get in line now by calling Kerbeck Corvette’s Dave Salvatore today at 877-537-2325 or visit Kerbeck Corvette online. Make sure you tell them CorvetteBlogger sent you!


Assembly Plant Schedule

Finally, here is the latest schedule of operations for the Bowling Green Assembly Plant through the end of August. The schedule is subject to change based on GM’s ongoing restructuring:

June: Closed the weeks of June 1, June 8 and June 29. Open the weeks of June 15, June 22.
July:  Closed the weeks of July 6, July 13. Open the weeks of July 20, July 27.
August: Closed the weeks of August 3, August 10. Open the weeks of August 17, August 23.

The model year change over is expected around the end of July, however, new production could be postponed should GM go into bankruptcy proceedings this summer. We’ll know more about that process in the coming weeks as well.


Contraint Report Sponsored by:
Kerbeck Corvette

Related:
Download the 2010 Corvette Order Guide
What’s New for the 2010 Corvette
[VIDEO] Introduction and Reveal of the 2010 Corvette Grand Sport

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More Corvette Comments from GM CEO Henderson

by Keith Cornett on May 11, 2009

GM CEO Fritz Henderson Discusses Corvette's Future

Last week General Motors CEO Fritz Henderson sat down with Autoweek and essentially said the Corvette isn’t going away because it pays the rent. Henderson repeated those comments in an online live chat this morning on GM’s FastLane blog. In addition to repeating his support for the Corvette, Fritz gives us a peak inside the Henderson garage.

From the FastLane Chat with Fritz Henderson on MOnday, May 11th:


Dr. Ron McGarry:
I know that shuttering popular brands is difficult, but as a former Pontiac owner and now with a Corvette, I am concerned about the whole Corvette/Bowling Green operation. Destroy this and it will be bad for GM on a whole. Any hints on plans for Corvette?

Fritz Henderson:
Corvette remains a force within our product lineup. It is a superb high performance car, the equal or better car relative to cars that sell for 3x the price. The corvette pays the rent in terms of profitability and cash flow and is one of our strongest (if not our strongest) nameplates in the entire GM lineup. We intend to keep this car fresh and in a segment leading position. I also own one and love it.


Brian Watters:
What do you drive presently and what is your favorite gm vehicles?

Fritz Henderson:
The Henderson family fleet. My wife drives a cool 9-3 Saab convertible. My baby is my corvette, I am also driving a camaro, and my daughter drives a Malibu.


Click here to read the transcript from the 30 min chat.


Source:
GM FastLane Blog

Related:
[VIDEO] GM CEO Fritz Henderson Discusses Corvette’s Future
What’s New for the 2010 Corvette
[VIDEO] Introduction and Reveal of the 2010 Corvette Grand Sport
Exclusive Photo Gallery: The 2010 Corvette Grand Sport

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GM CEO Fritz Henderson Discusses Corvette's Future

Autoweek.com sat down with new GM CEO Fritz Henderson and the Corvette’s future came up in the discussion. Fritz made it clear that the focus for Corvette is on the current C6 platform and making changes and upgrades to insure “it maintains its leadership position”.

When asked about the hold placed on the C7 development, Henderson commented that it would take a significant investment to have the car make another leap forward, but since the current architecture is so good, the plan for now is to make sure the current Corvette continues to improve every year.

I don’t know about you, but Henderson’s comments left me feeling very uninspired. Not just on the future development of the C7, but his discussion of the current C6 was very bland, almost clinical. Anyone else have that opinion?


Source:
Autoweek.com

Related:
What’s New for the 2010 Corvette
[VIDEO] Introduction and Reveal of the 2010 Corvette Grand Sport
Exclusive Photo Gallery: The 2010 Corvette Grand Sport

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April 2009 Corvette Sales

by Keith Cornett on May 4, 2009

We received good news regarding new Corvette sales via GM’s monthly sales report. GM posted 1,407 deliveries of new Corvettes last month, the highest amount since September 2008 and the fourth straight month of growth. Sales of Corvettes climbed 18.9% over March 2009′s figure of 1,183. During the month, the total inventory of Corvettes available fell 9.4% to a total of 6,416 units available nationwide.

READ MORE →

Download the 2010 Corvette Order Guide

by Keith Cornett on May 4, 2009

2010 Corvette Grand Sport Convertible

As Corvette Product Manager Harlan Charles promised at the NCM’s C5/C6 Bash, the 2010 Corvette Order Guides were delivered to Chevrolet dealers today. We’ll be reviewing it shortly and will post anything interesting that we find. In the meantime, you can download your copy after the jump.

A special thanks goes out to Dave Salvatore at Kerbeck Corvette for making this available to us so quickly. If you’re looking to purchase the new Grand Sport or any other 2010 Corvette, Dave is your go-to guy. Call him at 1-877-537-2325 and make sure you tell him CorvetteBlogger sent you!

Related:
[VIDEO] 2010 Corvette ZR1′s Performance Traction Management System
[VIDEO] Juechter: Corvette Grand Sport is the New Z51
[VIDEO] The 2010 Corvette’s Launch Control System Explained
What’s New for the 2010 Corvette
[VIDEO] Introduction and Reveal of the 2010 Corvette Grand Sport
Exclusive Photo Gallery: The 2010 Corvette Grand Sport

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