Click here for the Corvette Museum’s C5/C6 Bash schedule of events
Click here for the Corvette Museum’s C5/C6 Bash schedule of events
Last week we introduced you to a new super car project from Stile Bertone that utilizes the chassis of the 2009 Corvette ZR1. This week, the finished Bertone Mantide made its public debut at the Shanghai Motor Show. The distinctly Italian super car features an aggressive look that you’ll either love or hate. Interestingly, Bertone keeps the polycarbonate window showcasing the ZR1′s 638-hp LS9 which reinforces our belief that its what’s inside that counts.
According to the press release, the Mantide promises even greater performance than the Corvette ZR1 due to significant weight savings and highly advanced aerodynamics. Carbon fiber was used everywhere – body panels, interior trim, seats and even the wheels – reducing the overall vehicle weight by 220 pounds (100 kilos). Bertone says these changes give the Mantide a 0-62 mph in 3.2 seconds and a top speed of 217 mph.
Check out the press release below for more details:
Stile Bertone is proud to present the ULTRA HIGH PERFORMANCE one-off MANTIDE. Few, if any, automobiles have been as awe-inspiring as the show-stopping prototypes and “fuori serie” cars designed by Stile Bertone – the Alfa Romeo Carabo, the Lancia Stratos Zero and the Lamborghini LP500 prototype to name just a few
Stile Bertone has a long history of creating one-off prototypes based on the mechanicals of Chevrolet’s sporting automobiles spanning over 50 years. Today, Stile Bertone is proud to utilize the mechanicals of the formidable 2009 Corvette ZR1. Employing know-how from the Le Mans winning Corvette C5R, the ZR1 is the greatest all-round performance car in the world, the undisputed “King of the Ring”, posting the fastest ever lap time for a true production car at 7:26:4 seconds on the famed Nurburgring Nordschleife in Germany, long considered the benchmark for a car’s true performance. Mantide has been designed and fully engineered in collaboration with the renowned Danisi Engineering and aims to be the world’s greatest street legal performance car, wrapped in an iconic and radical Stile Bertone design.
Mantide’s futuristic design draws equal inspiration from modern aerospace and the world of Formula One. The iconic theme is clear to see: a teardrop-like fuselage which tightly encases the mechanicals and the passenger cell which is embraced by two prominent wrapping aerodynamic appendages. While shockingly bold and technical, Mantide’s unique design maintains a sensuality unique to Italian sports cars thanks to a futuristic interpretation of the classic Kamm Back two volume silhouette.
The aerospace inspired design aesthetic is further characterised by innovative yet beautiful forms which are fully driven by performance: the low-slung nose, jet fighter style teardrop canopy and butterfly opening doors, as well as the numerous air inlets and exhausts for maximum air efficiency.
Mantide also boasts cutting edge aerodynamic performance fine-tuned in an advanced full scale wind tunnel. Features include a Le Mans prototype-derived flat floor and diffuser as well as “flying buttresses” which help to increase aero efficiency, guarantee a lower drag coefficient and greater levels of down force. The final aerodynamic results are class leading, with drag reduced by 25% (Cd 0.298) and a 30% improvement in down force. The Mantide not only delivers greater speed and stability, but also more efficiency and therefore lower fuel consumption.
The Mantide promises even greater performance than the ZR1, due to significant weight savings and its highly advanced aerodynamics. Using carbon fibre for all body panels, interior trim, seats and even the wheels, the overall vehicle weight has been reduced by 100 kilos. The result is a staggering 0-62mph in 3.2 seconds and a top speed of 351 kph (217mph) Safety and chassis rigidity have been increased with the incorporation of an FIA regulation triangulated roll cage, light-weight carbon fibre racing seats and 4pt racing harness for track use.
Stile Bertone invites you to follow Mantide on its year-long journey as it travels to major auto events around the globe at www.insideprojectm.com
Inside Project M
I came across this photo on a Spanish-language antique car blog similar to Hemmings called BLOG dos Carros Antigos. No caption needed, the photo pretty much says it all.
Click here for a larger version.
BLOG dos Carros Antigos
General Motors made another round of cutbacks with 1,600 white-collar workers losing their jobs as the company accelerates cost cuts to qualify for additional government aid. Among the positions cut was that of GM’s Road Race Group Manager Steve Wesoloski. Over the last few months, GM has significantly scaled back its road racing efforts until the Corvette program is all that remains and that must have been enough to make Wesoloski’s position vulnerable.
My first encounter with Steve was just last month at the 12 Hours of Sebring when he addressed the Corvette Corral. I found him to be very passionate and enthusiastic about the Corvette Racing program. It’s sort of prophetic that during one part of his stump speech he asked everyone to please keep buying cars because he doesn’t want to have to go back to the real world.
Steve was with GM since 1989 where he started as a release engineer on the C4 Corvette and joined Corvette Racing in 2001. He served as a liaison between the factory and racing programs and when Road Racing Group Manager position opened up, he took that and ran with it. The only downside to being the boss he said at Sebring was that he wasn’t allowed to go over the wall anymore during pit stops.
All those who are fans of Corvette Racing should raise a glass to Steve tonight and wish him well. We thank you Steve for your dedication and infectious enthusiasm during your tenure and hope your future is as bright as that of the racing team you helped build.
Here again is the video of Steve’s presentation from the Corvette Corral at Sebring, which we titled as “Racing Sells Cars”.
Corvette Quarterly, the official magazine of Corvette from General Motors has told readers that in an effort to better the magazine, the spring and summer issues will not be published. We also have heard that subscribers have been mailed refunds and the mailers lead us to believe there will be no more print issues for the foreseeable future.
On Corvette Quarterly’s website, the following statement is at the top of the page:
Corvette Quarterly News
Because we value the readers of Corvette Quarterly, we are taking some time to make Corvette Quarterly the best source of Corvette news available. As part of this process, we will not publish our spring and summer issues for 2009.
But please check the website often to find the latest news on Corvette and information on the magazine.
Thank you! Your Corvette Quarterly Team
We contacted Corvette Quarterly through their Twitter account regarding the statement on the home page:
CorvetteBlogger: What’s the word on Corvette Quarterly? Saw the message on the site. Is it moving to an online addition only?
CQMag: The post at the top of our website (cqmag.com) is the official update regarding Corvette Quarterly from General Motors.
The Magazine has a subscriber base of 250,000 and an annual circulation of 1,000,000 copies per year. According to Echo Media, the demographics for Corvette Quarterly are:
Online at Corvette Quarterly you’ll find full and partial issues going back to Summer 2006. You can view the magazines in a pdf format that is friendly to the magazine experience. That leads us to speculate that the magazine may try to cut costs by going digital only. But the move to cancel issues altogether in the name of providing a better product is lost on us.
The LG Motorsports #28 Corvette is known for its Black and Flames livery on its GT2 Corvette, but at Long Beach this weekend the heat was turned up a notch following a collision with one of the BMW M3s. The BMW tried an inside pass as LG Motorsports co-driver Boris Said had the angle. The two cars both spun out with little damage appearing to the GT2 Corvette. However a couple of laps later, flames were seen surrounding the car as Said stopped in the safety runoff lane at Turn 1 and bailed out of the Corvette.
The team was running in seventh place when fire broke out. Replay clearly shows flames inside the cockpit. We’re very much glad that Boris is alright, but this has got to be a devastating loss for car owner Lou Gigliotti and the LG Motorsports team. We’ll check with Lou to find out more later this week.
Lou gives us an update via AmericanLeMansFans.com
I just want to thank the corner workers for putting out the fire fast and helping boris out.
their quick action turned what would have been a 100% totaled car into only 20% damage, and they probably helped to squelch the fire as boris was exiting.
Either way it was a bad day.
The contact with the BMW crushed the right side exhaust pipe which then caught the carbon fiber on fire. Then on the high speed straight it blew the flames onto a fuel line with pressure in it. When that burst, the car essentially blew up into flames.
Boris is ok but he will have a few weeks of sleepless nights with the burns on his arms and eyes.
His face is swollen today and he is not happy.
Thanks to all the forum members that came by.
We will see you at the races but not sure when. Thanks
Video Credit: ABC
The dynamic duo of Oliver Gavin and Olivier Beretta took to the streets of Long Beach on Saturday and won the final ALMS GT1 race for Corvette Racing’s C6.R. The win at the 100 minute Tequila Patron American Le Mans Series at Long Beach was the 43rd ALMS victory for Beretta and 32nd for Gavin. For the sister car, the streets of Long Beach were not quite as forgiving as a broken half-shaft retired Johnny O’Connell and Jan Magnussen after 58 minutes of racing.
Beretta started on the GT1 pole but O’Connell was able to jump the #4 Corvette C6.R on the first lap to take an early lead. A punctured tire forced the #3 Corvette to make an unscheduled pit stop at 18 minutes into the race. O’Connell came out of the pits with fresh medium-compound Michelin tires that help cut down Beretta’s lead. The #4 Corvette pitted at the 41-minute mark with Gavin replacing Beretta. But at the 58 minute mark the #3 Corvette broke a half-shaft effectively sealing the win for Gavin and Beretta.
“When I woke up this morning, I said I want to win the race, I want to stay out of trouble, and I want to have no mechanical problems,” Beretta said. “All three came true today.”
“Racing Johnny was a lot of fun,” Beretta recalled. “I was pushing hard, and seemed to have an advantage in the braking zones, but as everyone knows, Long Beach has hard concrete walls and I could not overtake him. I tried to stay out of trouble because the main targets today were to win the race and to keep both cars in good condition to take to Le Mans. We could not afford to make any mistakes.”
“Those opening laps show just how hard we race at Corvette Racing,” O’Connell said. “Olivier had a bit of a bobble and I got by him. I was just trying to control the pace; I knew where he was stronger and was just managing things to keep him behind me. Then he had a big moment in a corner and that opened a nice gap. Suddenly I got a low tire pressure alarm, and had to pit for tires. I felt our pace was good and everything was going great for the No. 3 Corvette, but then coming out of the hairpin something in the driveline broke.”
“You don’t want to end the last ALMS GT1 race being towed in, but the Corvette Racing team gave me a very sweet race car,” O’Connell continued. “The number of problems we’ve had is so incredibly small, I’d much rather have an issue today and then go to Le Mans and win that one. That’s what we’re really thinking about.”
With the No. 3 Corvette C6.R on the sidelines, Gavin had an uncontested run to the checkered flag.
“It was shaping up to be a great race at the end,” said the Briton. “They’d had some misfortune at the start with a puncture, and then switched tires. Olivier was having real problems on the softer tire, and Johnny was catching him on the medium compound. We then switched to that tire and it was obviously the right move for these warm conditions. The car was fantastic from then onwards. After they had a mechanical issue, it was just a matter of being smart, hitting my marks, being mindful of the prototypes, and trying to pick my way through the GT2 cars sensibly.”
“Although this is our last ALMS GT1 race, it isn’t the last hurrah for the GT1 Corvettes,” Gavin noted. “We still have unfinished business in Le Mans.”
Jan Magnussen was ready to take over the No. 3 Corvette C6.R when it slowed on the course, denying the Dane the opportunity to compete in the ALMS GT1 class for one last time.
“This isn’t the way we wanted to end the GT1 program, and these things don’t happen very often for us,” said Magnussen. “To be completely honest, I don’t mind it so much here as long as we don’t have any problems at Le Mans. Johnny did a fantastic job, he raced really hard and was absolutely mega.”
“We’ll come back at Le Mans strong and reliable. Finishing off a decade with this car with everyone involved in the program at Corvette Racing, Chevrolet, Compuware, Michelin, and Katech, we owe them a big thanks.”
For Corvette Racing program manager Doug Fehan, the end of the GT1 era in ALMS was a bittersweet experience.
“This was not exactly the conclusion we had hoped for, but it shows how much luck plays a role in racing,” Fehan said. “Regardless of what the problem might be, the positive side is that we’re going to go back and learn from it, and that’s what has made Corvette Racing a great team. We try to turn every adversity into opportunity.”
“When you compress almost 11 years of racing memories, with so many highs and lows, so many victories and so much success, it’s really difficult to choose between them. It’s been a great run for the Corvettes in GT1, and we have one more to go – it’s going to be a great 24 Hours of Le Mans, and we are tuned up and ready to go.”
Corvette Racing will make its final challenge for the 24 Hours of Le Mans GT1 crown in France on June 13-14.
Corvette Racing’s Johnny O’Connell gives us a tour of what he calls his office – the drivers seat of the Corvette C6.R. O’Connell shows us all the innovations that keep the drivers safe, comfortable and focused on going fast. We also get a walk-through of the controls the drivers use and the information available on the dash.
Olivier Beretta added his 23rd pole after Friday’s qualifying for the American Lemans at Long Beach. Beretta laped the temporary street course in 1:17.952 to finish 0.192 seconds faster than Johnny O’Connell in the #3 Corvette C6.R. This is the second pole this season for the #4 Corvette C6.R as Gavin started first on the GT1 grid at Sebring.
Beretta and co-driver Oliver Gavin last won at Long Beach in 2007 and would really like this win of the final U.S. race for the GT1 Corvettes.
“Long Beach is a very special place,” Beretta said. “The track is very fun to drive and challenging in some places. I am very happy to be here today because I saw the team in 1999 when they first started and I was with my old Viper team at that time racing against the Corvette team.”
“The No. 4 car wants to win, the No. 3 car wants to win. Within the team we are racing for Corvette. I think everyone is very happy to be part of the team. Itâ€™s the last race for the GT1 but weâ€™ll be back in GT2 with a strong car and a strong team.”
The Tequila Patron American Le Mans Series at Long Beach is scheduled to start at 4:15 p.m. PT on Saturday, April 18. The one-hour, 40-minute race will be televised by ABC on April 19 at 12:30 p.m. ET.
The SmokingVette.com Corvette Forum has launched their second annual online “Virtual Car Show” and the list of cash and prizes is impressive. There are two categories open to participants – Corvettes and non-Corvettes. Registration is free. Simply upload 2-3 photos to www.SmokinVette.com and you’ll have a shot at over $10,000 in prizes including the grand prize of a BendPak Four Post Lift!
Here are a list of prizes for the C1-C6 Corvette Category:
Prizes for the non-Corvette category:
The contest opened on April 14 and already there are 12 pages of entries and comments. You can check out the entries in this thread.
The “Virtual Car Show” runs through May 14, 2009 and winners will be announced no later than May 21st. If you decide to do any car shows this season, the SmokinVette.com “Virtual Car Show” should be at the top of your list.