Report: Baby Boomers Getting Too Old for Corvettes


Report: Baby Boomers Getting Too Old for Corvettes

Are Baby Boomers finally getting too old for Corvettes?

That’s one takeaway from a story on that details falling sales for traditional sports cars like the Corvette, Camaro, and Mustang.

Our takeaway is that after years of such talk, maybe it’s finally time for Chevrolet to consider spinning off Corvette into its own sports/luxury brand, which would feature two-door sports cars like the ‘Vette and Camaro alongside seven-passenger SUVs and smaller crossovers, along the lines of Porsche.

With the overwhelming praise that’s greeted the seventh generation Corvette and the sixth generation Camaro, maybe there would be enough Baby Boomers (and others) who would like to have Stingray-like performance from a more comfortable SUV to make such a “new” brand a success.

That expanded-model strategy has certainly worked for Porsche, with sales of its Macan SUV growing by 30 percent this year to become the company’s top seller.

Unfortunately, right now, though, sports car sales are down pretty much across the board. For example, Ford shut down its Mustang plant for a week this month to try and clear out inventory amid sales declines of 9 percent for the year. The new Camaro hasn’t set the sales floor on fire, with sales down 11 percent in 2016 (due mostly to lower fleet sales), and Corvette sales have decreased 14 percent this year, with GM having to offer discounts of as much as 20 percent off MSRP to move some late-2016 models.

Report: Baby Boomers Getting Too Old for Corvettes

One reason could be physical – some men born between 1946 and 1964 – the so-called Baby Booomers – may just be getting too old to climb in and out of a sports car that sits low to the ground.

“Boomers are starting to age out of sports cars,” argues Eric Noble, president of the CarLab, a consulting firm in Orange, California. “When you get into your 60s, comfort becomes more important. Sports cars are not going away, but the market will get smaller.”

That’s one reason why we think there might be a market for an upscale and powerful Corvette SUV, sacrilegious as it may seem. (Of course, look at Porsche sales of the Macan for proof it’s an idea that might just work for Corvette.) One might argue that GM already has such a brand with Cadillac and its great performance lineup, but as fine as those Caddys are, I don’t think they hold the performance charisma that the Corvette name embodies.

“Boomers are coming out of pure sports cars, but they’re not willing to sacrifice pure driving,” said Branden Cote, AMG manager for Mercedes-Benz U.S, which has seen its performance lineup grow by nearly 60 percent to almost 16,000 vehicles this year. “The idea of a sports SUV was incomprehensible 10 years ago. They’re not giving up spirited driving; they’re going to a different type of sporty driving.”

What do you think? Would you consider a 650-horsepower “Corvette Z06 SUV” if the vehicle still looked (and performed) like a Stingray? I think I would.


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  1. What is the average age of the new Corvette Buyer? Used to be 58 about 5 years ago. Probably went up since then. I just turned 70 and I think if the times comes when I can no longer row through the gears I will give my Vettes to my sons and use the high end family sedan for all my needs. I don’t want a 650 HP SUV. We boomers kept the Corvette in existence and it was great that after raising a family we could go back to a new performance driven Corvette. It’s sort of like the circle of life for me. When I was in high school and beyond I hung around parking lots with my muscle cars. Great times. We all thought that was done but we got a second chance at some of the coolest most powerful cars ever made. Now that I am retired I hang around parking lots for cruise nights and car shows. Worked out well for me. I think it’s sad to see almost all cars looking the same. It was a treat every September when the dealers took the wraps off the new models. Life goes on.

  2. Michael Very well said, I did & still do the same stuff myself, I own 3 Sting Rays, from 65 to 72 to 15, when I can no longer get into my cars, I’ll still keep them, & BTW I’m 69.

  3. I don’t think this person really gave much thought to his audience when he wrote this article. As a two Corvette owner I take issue on three levels. Number one, that a Corvette owner would want a high performance SUV. I would not buy and SUV and only drive our Jeep under extreme circumstances. Number two, that Corvette owners are male Baby Boomers who are too infirmed to drive a stick shift. And number three is that Corvette owners are men. I am a 65 year old woman and I love driving my 04 CE Z06. I’m also not the only one out there either. Don’t write off the Corvette owner and some dying breed of man!

  4. No Corvette “SUV”……what a disgrace !!!!!!
    We have a Magnum SRT8 for that purpose along with a 79 Corvette, a 98 Camaro SS LS6 and a recently purchased 2017 Stingray. BTW, the Camaro & Stingray are my wife’s, we are both pushing 70 and all but the Magnum are “stick” cars.

  5. Mitch Talley doesn’t speak for me.. I’m 70, and I just bought a 2017 Corvette in August. (Seven speed manual) . I’m also the lead singer in a gigging rock band, have an 18 year old daughter, and a 21 year old son, and can still bench over 300 lbs. Yeah, some baby boomers can’t get in and out of low cars,, but not all of us, and I don’t like being lumped in with fat , out of shape slobs, who probably were that way since they were 45.. like a lot of the people from my graduating HS class.. A lot are of them are dead, and a lot are just pathetic, rancid old slobs.
    I may be old and rancid looking , but I’m still me,. and still working out, and doing what I always did.. Does it hurt to do it? Yes it does, but I’ll do it until I die..or collapse , or whatever.

  6. If this happens and they give the Corvette to Cadillac they might as well send out invitations to the FUNERAL. Cadillac could not sell the XLR and look what happened to it, parts still hanging on the supply line in Bowling Green. The only ones to keep the Corvette alive will be us old timers who LOVE their Corvettes and have over the years. I have a new C7 Coupe (my 11th Corvette) and when I can’t get in it I will save it for my Grandsons.


  7. I’ve had a long love affair with cars and especially the Corvette. Was lucky enough to buy as my first car a used red 1965 Corvette in 1972. Owned a few in between and the last 24 years still own my Laguna Blue 66 Coupe. I’m 63 now, and as long as my legs hold out I’ll always drive a manual as I do in all my cars. Just hate the looks of all these new cars. All the same over and over for years. No style or beauty in them at all. With limited color and motor choices I don’t even enjoy driving them.
    I agree it sure was a treat to go with excitement to see the new models come out, just longing to see what has changed for the new year. I’ll just keep enjoying my Corvette as long as I can. Yes, time moves on and unfortunately in the car world not as glorious as it did in the past.

  8. +3. To bring out a Corvette SUV will simply be diluting the brand. Yes, it may increase sales as per Porsche, but it will turn an iconic sports car name into a generic, techno-bubble car. I am 70, own a ’66 C2,C3,and C7. I am eagerly awaiting the C8. I would never be interested in a Macan-like Corvette or the defanged turbo 911 that has no redeeming styling cues. A four door Corvette Panamera? Give me a BMW M7 any day. I’ll keep my Vettes until I need a walker!

  9. Ken. My sons are talking about a seven speed manual walker if the time ever comes.
    Mike H. Talking about no choices of engines and transmissions these days. When I ordered my 68 there were two 327s and four 427s to choose from. Five transmissions. A three speed manual and 3 four speed manuals plus an auto. Granted the M22 only came with the L88.
    I remember very well seeing a late 50s or 60s Chevy on the highway and catching up to it just to see what it had for call outs. Would race up to them in my GTO and to see if they were run worthy. Impalas & Super Sports with everything from a 6 to a 409. Call all outs on the front and rear up to 62 and fenders on later models. Even the 57s had a Bowtie emblem front and rear for 6s, a silver V for 283s and a gold for 283s with the power pack. Four barrel and duel exhausts. Interesting times indeed. Stay well guys.

  10. Hi, I am one of those that have always seen a Corvette as the best there is. Have had cars of different manufacturers and still my Corvette is the light of my eye. I am 74 years young and am always looking forward to getting in my baby and cruising. Getting in my C-6 still gives me a rush that no other car has given.

  11. Yup, as long as you tic the ARO in the list of options, you can go as long as you’re able…
    That’s the Age Reversal Option for those that aren’t aware..
    It makes you feel like a teenager when you hit the starter button…!!

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