One of the aspects of the Corvette hobby we like to follow are the sales trends of new, classic and pre-owned Corvettes.
Our Assembly Plant update from last week brought a few more questions and concerns from Corvette enthusiasts to light. One comment was that the three-month production hiatus is going to essentially create two versions (early and late) of the 2018 model year Corvettes.
Here’s the major differences between the two versions of the 2018 Corvette:
Early 2018 Corvettes were assembled using panels that were painted in the old paint shop and then assembled on the old assembly line that was running at 18 Corvettes per hour. No big deal, Chevrolet has been building Corvettes like that since 1997. However, the later 2018s will feature panels that were slow baked in the new paint shop created specifically for Corvette’s composite panels, and the assembly line that will run two minutes slower per car (12 Corvettes per hour vs 18 per hour) so workers will have more time for their required tasks. When these cars are completed, they will undergo a range of quality assurance checks before being shipped to dealers.
So it’s next year and your Chevrolet dealer has an “early” and “late” 2018 Corvette remaining in inventory. Which one as a buyer would you want?
In discussions regarding the new paint facility at the plant, the plan moving forward is to do running changes with the colors once the plant restarts later this year. White and Yellow are expected first but the other exterior colors will restart in the old paint shop before being transferred to the new paint shop. It’s more than likely that consumers will not know where the break occurred between the two.
My personal thoughts are that I don’t think this will be too much of an issue for new Corvette sales. After all, Chevrolet has been building C7 Corvettes on the “old assembly line” since 2013 and any new early Corvettes they have trouble moving can be dealt with through rebates and incentives. But in the secondary used market, it just may be the savvy buyers who know the difference.
I am very interested to know what you think about this. Will buyers prefer the “later” 2018s or is this much ado about nothing?
Final Corvette Rolls Off the Old Assembly Line as Retooling Begins
[VIDEO] Corvette Assembly Plant Update with Kai Spande from the 2017 NCM Bash
The Corvette Assembly Plant’s Three Month Shutdown to Begin July 28th