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Tom Wallace Podcast

by Keith Cornett on April 29, 2006

Christopher Jensen of the Cleveland Plain Dealer contacted us to make us aware that there was a podcast available of his interview with Corvette Chief Engineer Tom Wallace. The interview was the basis for his article published earlier this week called “Building A Better Corvette”. The podcast contains information and statements from Wallace that didn’t get published in the story. Listen to the interview or download the MP3.

Corvette Plant Breaks Build Numbers

by Keith Cornett on April 28, 2006

The National Corvette Museum announced yesterday that the Corvette Assembly Plant produced 4,059 Corvettes in March. This was the first time in 21 years they have exceeded 4,000 Corvettes in one month.
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Wallace Discusses Building a Better Corvette

by Keith Cornett on April 27, 2006

Chief Corvette Engineer Tom Wallace talks to the Cleveland Plain Dealer about building the C7 Corvette. All options are currently on the table according to Wallace including right-hand drive, all-wheel drive, midengine, bigger displacement, swoopier styling and hybrids. While nothing earth-shattering comes from the article, it is always nice to hear the new chief talk about what may be in store for the new Corvette including the demand for more horsepower at a time when gas is $3.50 per gallon:

“Obviously fuel prices tend to make you step back from that once in a while, but the winners will increase horsepower and increase fuel economy. If you can do both of those, you can win. That is where we are going to continue to press. The Z06 is 505 horsepower and the only vehicle in the United States with 500 horsepower that doesn’t pay a gas-guzzler tax. ” said Wallace. When asked about supercharged Corvette, Wallace said “GM really knows how to supercharge and turbocharge engines. Clearly that is one of the alternatives we will continue to look at. You have to be careful about just continuing to increase displacement, because that does cost a lot of fuel economy.”
Wallace also confirms what Bob Lutz said about the production life of the C6 Corvette being around five years.
“We used to go eight, nine, 10 years, and that is too long. I keep thinking five or six years is about the most you want to stretch a major one in this segment. I think you start to get long in the tooth in the sixth year, and year seven and eight you’ll be in trouble.”
Read the entire article at the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
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2007 Corvette Order Guide

by Keith Cornett on April 26, 2006

Last week, GM released the official order guide for 2007 Corvettes. While we already alerted you to the major changes for the 2007 model, I thought it would be appropriate to post the entire guide with options and colors offered for each Corvette model: 2007 Order Guide Information Three models:
1YY07 Corvette Coupe
1YY67 Corvette Convertible
1YY87 Corvette Z06 Coupe
1YY07 Coupe Information:
3 Packages; 1LT, 2LT, 3LT
2 Transmissions: MX0 Automatic, MN6 6 Speed

Options:
F55 Suspension Package
Z51 Suspension Package
QG7 Polished Wheels
QX1 Competition Gray Wheels
QX3 Chrome Wheels
R8C Museum Delivery
U3U Navigation with Single CD
VK3 Front License Plate Bracket
CC3 Transparent Top
C2L Transparent and Painted Top

Interior:
023 Cobalt Red
193 Ebony
313 Cashmere
843 Titanium
026 Cobalt Red Two Tone
316 Cashmere Two Tone
846 Titanium Two Tone

Colors:
10U Arctic White
19U LeMans Blue Metallic
41U Black
45U Velocity Yellow Tintcoat
67U Machine Silver Metallic
74U Victory Red
80U Monterey Red Metallic
83U Atomic Orange Metallic Tintcoat
1YY67 Convertible Information:
2 Packages; 2LT, 3LT
2 Transmissions: MX0 Automatic, MN6 6 Speed

Options:
CM7 Power Convertible Top
F55 Suspension Package
Z51 Suspension Package
QG7 Polished Wheels
QX1 Competition Gray Wheels
QX3 Chrome Wheels
R8C Museum Delivery
U3U Navigation with Single CD
VK3 Front License Plate Bracket

Interior:
023 Cobalt Red
193 Ebony
313 Cashmere
843 Titanium
026 Cobalt Red Two Tone
316 Cashmere Two Tone
846 Titanium Two Tone

Colors:
10U Arctic White
19U LeMans Blue Metallic
41U Black
45U Velocity Yellow Tintcoat
67U Machine Silver Metallic
74U Victory Red
80U Monterey Red Metallic
83U Atomic Orange Metallic Tintcoat

Top Colors:
29T Storm Gray
35T Beige
41T Black
1YY87 Z06 Coupe Information:
2 Packages; 1LZ, 2LZ
1 Transmissions: MN6 6 Speed

Options:
QL9 Polished Wheels
Q44 Competition Gray Wheels
R8C Museum Delivery
U3U Navigation with Single CD
VK3 Front License Plate Bracket

Interior:
023 Cobalt Red
193 Ebony
843 Titanium

Colors:
19U LeMans Blue Metallic
41U Black
45U Velocity Yellow Tintcoat
67U Machine Silver Metallic
74U Victory Red
83U Atomic Orange Metallic Tintcoat
New Dealer Accessories Available for 2007: Racing spoiler
Body side moldings
Racing stripe package
Z06 sillplates
Z06 427 hood badge
Hood blanket with color logo

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Missing Roof Panel? No Big Deal!

by Keith Cornett on April 24, 2006

Automotive pundits have jumped all over the story of a Z06 that lost its roof at 60 mph as told by the owner on CorvetteForum.com:

“I still can’t believed this happened. Had just shifted out of first @ around 6900-7000k, hit 2nd and hear a loud crack, pull over and my roof is missing…”

Some want you to believe that this problem is a result of shoddy workmanship or inferior materials. If we are talking about multiple examples, then I would be open to listening to these arguments. Others are all over the story because they think they finally found the Achilles heal of the Z06. GM did issue a recall for C6 Coupes relating to the laminate separating from the panel. Whether or not the Z06 has a similar problem has yet to be decided.

All manufactures from Porsche to Kia have defects in their products. Some have more than others. Corvette has won kudos from owners and industry awards for one of the smallest reported defects per car. Now, when the Z06 in question lost its top, was it scary for the owner? Yes. Could a flying roof panel cause safety issues with other vehicles on the road? Yes! But until it happens more than once, I’m unconvinced that this is a systemic problem to the Z06 in particular and Corvette in general.

In a related note, I got a good laugh listing to the Jalopnik podcast (precast) about this story. Seems there is some confusion on what to call a Corvette’s roof:

“First off, we have to say that the Corvette that had a roof fly off was a Z06. So when you’re listening to Farago and I talking about it being a coupe with a bolted on Targa top we’re talking about a Z06 that only comes as a coupe and not the regular Corvette C6 that only comes with a removable Targa. So when we say “coupe” we really mean Z06. It’s all very confusing.”

Let me help set the record straight with a little lesson on the vernacular when discussing Corvette body styles:

Corvette Coupe: A single roof panel that stretches across the entire top. Some are painted, some are tinted glass. Porsche owns the “targa” name, so technically you can’t call it a targa top. It’s a roof panel.

Corvette Z06: The Z06 evolved from the early C5 hardtop or Fixed Roof Coupe (FRC). It’s not a coupe because the roof is not removable.

Corvette Convertible: The soft top folds into a storage area behind the seats allowing the passengers to bask in the sun.

 

Featured Corvettes at VetteFinders.com

by Keith Cornett on April 21, 2006

The prime Corvette selling season is underway and our classified ads site VetteFinders.com currently has over 500 Corvettes for sale. The following six cars were highlighted in our April Featured Corvettes Newsletter which contains 18 of the hundreds of Corvettes we have available:

1958 Convertible
$59,995
1963 Coupe
$65,000
1968 Convertible
$22,500
 
1993 40th Coupe
$19,000
1998 Convertible
$27,500
2006 Coupe
$52,690
Interested in receiving the Featured Corvettes newsletter? Click here to subscribe. Selling Your Corvette? Now is the time and VetteFinders.com is the place to reach more qualified Corvette Buyers. Corvette Classified Ads are only $25 and run for 3 months. You can post unlimited photos and you have access to make any changes at any time.
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Corvettes For Sale Down Under?

by Keith Cornett on April 20, 2006

Thanks to the success of the C6 in foreign markets, especially Europe and Japan, the Corvette may be sold directly in Australia. This year, 400 Corvettes were sent to Japan which was expected to account for their entire yearly allocation. They sold out in a month. And in Europe, Corvette has sold three times the number of Corvettes in 2005 than in 2004. GM already has a presence in Australia with the Holden and is in the process of establishing distribution for Cadillac and Hummer. Corvette could possibly be sold at select Holden dealers. So will the Corvette be modified for Right Hand Drive? GM’s Bob Lutz says no with the current C6 model, but the C7 should be designed for both markets. Lutz said “With the next iteration of Corvette we really need to look at right-hand drive seriously. There is clearly a demand there, if we get the car right, as the latest model has shown.” “That way you get the economies of scale and all the development is done at the same time. The Corvette is one of GM’s treasured products, so we should make the most of it.” While the C6 has been for sale for two years, Lutz says GM is considering introducing the C7 model “sooner rather than later”. The C5 Corvette had a nine year life-span but GM may cut the C6’s life to five years, which would mean the new model could be available in 2009. Source: www.drive.com.au
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GM Opens The Drive in Las Vegas

by Keith Cornett on April 19, 2006

GM opened its “autotainment” experience, The Drive last week at the Sahara casino in Las Vegas. “The Drive” will feature two professionally-designed driving courses, including a high-performance loop and an off-road adventure with two trails over a dirt terrain. Located at the Sahara Hotel & Casino and just steps from The Strip, “The Drive” is situated on 11 acres leased by GM from the hotel. The performance course features a half-mile paved route with jogs and turns complete with chicanes to enjoy both the speed and handling control of pure sports car driving thrills. Vehicle choices unleashed on the Performance course include: the Chevy Corvette; the Pontiac GTO; the 400-horsepower Cadillac CTS-V; the Pontiac Solstice, the Cadillac STS-V; and the Saab 9-3 convertible. The off-road course gives consumers looking to navigate a tunnel, hill climb, v-ditch and sloped banks, moguls and obstacles. While the HUMMER H2 and H3 are the stars of the off-road course, you can also test the Chevy Silverado Diesel, and once available, the redesigned 2007 models of the Chevy Tahoe, GMC Yukon Denali, Cadillac Escalade and Chevy Suburban. “The Drive” hours of operation are preliminarily set to be 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. seven days a week, including holidays. The Drive is accessible from the GM Monorail station at the Sahara Hotel & Casino, and parking is available at the hotel’s self parking structure or valet. Drivers must be age 18 or over, and present a valid driver’s license. Professional drivers (as passengers) will accompany each driver to help them get the most out of their driving experience. For the safety of all guests, on-site breathalyzer tests will be part of the mandatory registration process before guests can enjoy The Drive experience. More information about “The Drive” can be found at www.TheDriveVegas.com
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NCM Needs 100 New Corvette Enthusiasts

by Keith Cornett on April 17, 2006

The National Corvette Museum is giving away 100 “free” New Generation Memberships purchased and donated by an NCM member who requested to remain anonymous. The memberships are for young Corvette enthusiasts 16 years and under to introduce the Museum and our mission to. If you know of a young enthusiast, of no family relation, that would be a great addition to the Museum family please email our Membership Services Manager, Stephanie Morrill at: stephanie@corvettemuseum.com or via mail to Stephanie’s attention. New Generation Members receive “free” admission to the Museum, a membership card and certificate, a special gift and a subscription to the NCM quarterly newsletter – New Generation Newz. Wednesday, May 31 is the deadline to submit your entry for the drawing.
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2007 Corvette Production Changes and Forecast

by Keith Cornett on April 11, 2006

Rick Conti is always good for some interesting Corvette news on his site (CorvetteConti.com) and today he comes through in spades. In addition to posting a photo for the real Atomic Orange (word is someone leaked the wrong color, whether intentional or not nobody is talking), Rick has posted the 2007 production changes that we can expect to see on next year’s Corvettes. The production changes are:

Exterior Color – (83U) Atomic Orange replacing (71U) Daytona Sunset orange Metallic Two-Tone Modified Seats. Perforated leather seating surfaces with crossed flag embroidery and contrasting stitching. The Two-tone interiors are available in Red (026), Cashmere (316) and Titanium (846) as well as Coupe or Convertible with 2LT or 3LT. Steering-Wheel mounted audio controls (UK3) included with Bose Premium (US9/U3U) audio systems. Larger Glovebox Storage Space. OnStar (UE1) is now available on Z06 2LZ Equipment Group. Enhanced Acoustic Package reduces road notice and is included with Z06 2LZ Equipment Group. Bose Audio Enhancements New Keyless access transmitter with integrated mechanical key. Power Convertible Top (CM7) is now included with Convertible 3LT Equipment Group. Cross-Drilled brake rotors are now included in Magnetic Selective Ride Control (F55).
In addition to these changes, the model forecast calls for 40% Coupes, 40% Convertibles and 20% Z06 Hardtops. Make sure to visit CorvetteConti.com to view the photos of the new Atomic Orange as well as the two-tone seats.
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