Happy Saturday everyone and welcome to Quick Shifts! Quick Shifts is a content feature here at CorvetteBlogger featuring links to Corvette and automotive-related stories of interest. This weekend’s reading and viewing material includes a look at the $60,000 Stingray, the ramifications of the C8.R’s engine on future pushrod V8 production, C8 vs. C7 ZR1 at Spring Mountain, C8 fun facts, know your enemies, GM’s electric ambitions, Corvette speedboats, and throwback first reviews.
We are starting off by sending you in Motor Trend’s direction. They have an in-depth look at what you get and what you are leaving on the table when you opt for the base, $60,000 version of the 2020 Stingray. One thing left off of the pros list is the satisfaction in knowing that you got the better of GM. Just like the Cars.com review last week, this is an interesting look at a version of the mid-engine Corvette that hasn’t gotten much ink since it grabbed headlines immediately following the reveal.
Read about it on Motortrend.com.
We will stay in the MT network for our shift to second. Hot Rod (sorry, Jeff!) ran a thoughtful piece this week that asks if the C8.R’s DOHC V8 signals the end of the line for GM’s legendary small-block? It is an interesting thought to ponder and, as far as the Corvette is concerned, we tend to believe that the LT2 will be the only pushrod V8 on offer for the mid-engine car, barring some mid-cycle refresh that brings a 530ish HP LT3 to the Stingray. With the currently available information, our projected C8 engine line-up exclusively features flat-plane DOHC V8s. It is hard to imagine those exotic powerplants proliferating GM’s entire range though; pushrods will always have a home in the General’s highly profitable trucks and SUVs.
Put your conjecture hat on at Hotrod.com.
The/Drive reposted and dissected a video from novelist C.W. Lemoine comparing Spring Mountain PDR videos of himself piloting the king of front-engine Corvettes side-by-side with Corvette Forum editor, Derin Richardson’s C8 hot laps. It isn’t a perfect comparison because of the whole “different drivers on different days” thing, but it is still impressive how close the new car stays in spite of a 260 HP (the equivalent of a base 1963 Corvette +10) deficit!
Watch the video and read the breakdown here.
We are only spending the first four gears on the C8 this week so if that is all that you care about, we will leave you with an excellent piece from Motor Authority that details seven things to know about C8 performance and development. If you are a regular of this site, you will most likely know several of the fun facts presented but you are still likely to learn a thing or two.
Enjoy this one!
The new face of the enemy! The Geneva Motor Show, famous in Corvette circles as the place where GM chose to launch the C4 ZR-1, was canceled this week for the first time since 1940 in an attempt to quell the spread of coronavirus. Porsche was planning on releasing the new 911 Turbo S in Switzerland and with the show’s cancelation… dropped all of the info online anyway.
Even though it costs more than $200,000, it is still the closest thing to a direct rival that America’s Sports Car has and Stuttgart seems to be taking the challenge of the ‘Vette’s new engine placement very seriously. The top-of-the-line non-GT Porsche might look exactly like the last three iterations, but it is receiving the biggest power boost in its history, going from 580 horses, all the way up to 640! Paired with Porsche’s industry standard PDK dual-clutch transmission and AWD, this thing will be one of the quickest cars in history! They are claiming a 2.6 second sprint to 60, 8.9 seconds to 124 (200 kph), and a 10.5 second quarter mile. Serious numbers! When your kid’s orthodontist pulls up next to you in one, tread lightly!
Do your due diligence on our new adversary on Roadandtrack.com
GM showed the hand that they are holding for their ongoing game with Tesla. Mercifully, there was no Corvette included in Mary Barra’s announcement but it really looks like they are finally getting serious about taking on Musk and Co. with a new battery pack twice the size of anything Tesla has, capable of more than 400 miles of range. See the full electric line-up broken down on Automobilemag.com.
Car and Driver has some more in-depth reading about Cadillac’s questionably named offerings, including the hand-built Celestiq, which “will sticker for six figures that don’t start with a 1”, and the 1,000 HP Hummer truck’s SUV variant Here and Here.
If you are wondering why we are excited that the ‘Vette was left out of the announcement, our feelings about electrifying enthusiast vehicles, no matter how quick it can make them, are pretty well conveyed by EVO’s Richard Meaden here.
Hagerty also posted an interesting video from Engineering Explained a couple of weeks ago that talks about the energy density problem with Electric cars if you are interested in arming yourself for arguments with your neighbor who claims that his Model S is the future of “mobility” and that you are driving a dinosaur. Watch it here.
We have an extra bit of fun for you this go around courtesy of Car and Driver, who put together a fun gallery of Car-themed speedboats. Click through this while you wait for lake weather to return to most of the country! We would love to see a modern interpretation of the water ‘Vette that looks something like that insane AMG Cigarette boat, perhaps featuring Katech LT5s?
C8s are finally shipping to new customers! To celebrate, we wanted to take a look back upon simpler times, when the most exciting, and controversial, things about a new ‘Vette was the design of the head and tail lights. Please enjoy these first drives from the distant lands of 2005 and 2014, when each of the previous two generations of America’s Sportscar were new. It is fun to compare and contrast how all three cars were greeted by the automotive media, how those same people felt about each car as it was being replaced, and note similarities in the reviews! You can “review” our collection of C8 reviews here, here, and here.
C7 first drives from our pal, Don Sherman (we have been featuring him a lot lately!) and one of the only car writers who can share a sentence with him, Jeremy Clarkson (it probably goes without saying but with Clarkson, you have to try and remember that he is either joking or intentionally trying to rile people up most of the time, it is his signature move and it produces some really clever “make fun of America” one-liners like “The touchscreen display will slide down at the press of a button to reveal a hidden cubbyhole that is easily big enough for a Bible and a small pistol” but it really is a shining review of our favorite car, even if he erroneously believes that the old-world is better than the land of the free and the home of the brave).
Enjoy, Corvette Nation, and have a great weekend!
Previous Quick Shifts:
2020 Makes C&D Editor’s List, C8 Reviews and Gripes, Mid-Engine History, 10 Things, and RIP Impala
Top Gear Review, Best Holdens, Don Sherman’s C8 Chassis Analysis, Millennial Buyers, Corvette Trivia, and More!
1953 Throwback, Honoring Ed Welburn, Michelin Tech, Rockenfeller Q&A and Corvette Trivia