Welcome to another fun-filled edition of Quick Shifts! Quick Shifts is a content feature here at CorvetteBlogger featuring links to Corvette and automotive-related stories of interest. The content that we have hand-selected for you this week includes a C8 vs. 911 and GT500 comparison test, daily driving a C8, the new M3, the Model S going Plaid, the C4 taking on the 300ZX Turbo, and more!
Edmunds own C8 Corvette has been the gift that keeps giving since they purchased it a couple of weeks ago! The most recent adventure that Carlos Lago has roped the Rapid Blue mid-engine marvel into sees it face off with rivals of both domestic and international flavors. As we’ve come to expect, the other American in the test is the 760 HP Shelby GT500 (seen here in Twister Orange, a great complement to the ‘Vette’s hue) and, while other publications have opted to pit the Stingray against the Cayman GT4, Carlos and Co. went the traditional route by sourcing a 911 for German representation. See how our hero fares by clicking here.
The Drive’s Jerry Perez seems to have had a similar idea as he announced this week that he will be replacing his daily-driven Civic with a new Stingray (with body-colored vents!) for a short period of time. He will be suffering through this hardship in the name of science, and unlike most other reviews that we’ve seen almost weekly for a year now, Jerry will be focusing on how well the C8 does “normal car things” and he wants YOUR help! From the article: “this will involve taking my kid to school, going to the grocery store, running all kinds of errands, and parking a supercar-looking sports car on the street… I have to ask: what do you want to know about the new Stingray?” There is still some time to chime in and see what questions you can get answered by going to thedrive.com.
Outside of our immediate interest group, the big news of the week was the official unveiling of the next-generation of the legendary BMW M3 and its two-door M4 sibling. The important specs are (up to) 503 HP, a manual transmission, and even a first-ever wagon variant, but the biggest news is its controversial styling. It led many to wonder if it is the ugliest BMW of all time and renders of how it “should” have looked popped up online almost immediately. Personally though, for C6 Z06-rivaling power in a six-speed wagon with a killer green paint job, I’d be willing to forgive any number of exterior deformities!
As difficult as it is for your humble author to care about anything in the EV sector, regardless of how impressive it looks on paper, I’d be remiss if I didn’t also mention the news that came out of Tesla’s annual “battery day” celebration. Along with promising a $25,000 car in about three years, the big announcement from battery day was the addition of a 1,100 HP “Plaid” version to the Model S lineup. The working prototypes of the Plaid are astonishingly quick! Elon Musk is claiming a sub-two-second sprint to 60 mph and a quarter-mile E.T. of under nine ticks. It can corner too! Musk released an onboard video of the Plaid running Laguna Seca through Tesla’s official Twitter account, and, at 1:30.4, its time around the famed circuit was faster than the one posted by the C7 ZR1 (though, we have to point out that we still don’t believe that Randy Pobst and Motor Trend gave the ZR1 a fair shake at Best Driver’s Car 2019, where the ZR1’s official time came from!). For fellow devotees to internal combustion, McLaren will wrap up our forward gears with some statistics of their own. The British automaker announced this week that their bonkers new 765LT can run from 0 to 124 mph (200 kph) in 7 seconds flat and cover 1,320 feet in under 10 seconds. While this doesn’t sound overly impressive next to the Tesla’s dipping into the 8’s, it isn’t too shabby (it is remarkable, actually) for a rear-wheel-driver that has to (has the joy of) rev to make its power and torque. We are eagerly awaiting the 765’s turn at Laguna Seca, it should be hot on the heels of its outrageously priced, record-holding sibling!
In-car footage from Sunday’s Plaid Model S run at Laguna Seca pic.twitter.com/rwQDBFCWoH— Tesla (@Tesla) September 23, 2020
As they have many times since the pandemic (COVID, not C8 Fever) hit, our friends at Car and Driver took care of Reverse for us by posting an excellent throwback Corvette piece this week. Spurred by the exciting Nissan 400Z reveal last week, C&D took us back 30 years for a look at how the Z car’s ancestor stacked up against the contemporaneous carrier of the crossed flags. See what the great John Phillips thought of the two cars right here and take a moment to appreciate how fortunate Corvette fans are to have had four different and wonderful incarnations of their favorite car since this test was written. Z (and ZX) aficionados definitely haven’t been so lucky! It is also worth reflecting upon just how stellar America’s sports car has become, even in base trim. The Plastic Fantastic has come so far that to recreate these old tests (vs. the Z or Supra) would seem silly. Chevrolet has progressed their halo car beyond the simple realm of the sports car, into a whole new league, without allowing the price to get out of hand. Thank you for sticking with it, GM! It is an incredible time to love Corvettes!
Since there aren’t any 5-speed Corvettes, we had to turn to one of the old “Doug Nash’s” overdrive gears for a bonus selection that has been knocking on the QS door for a couple of weeks. Recently, Motor Trend offered up a fun activity that a friend and I once attempted for our native Colorado. The object of the game is to come up with vehicles that share their name with a professional sports franchise (or a locale in the Centennial state in my version). Grab a notepad (or iPad) and jot down as many as you can think of before peeking at MT’s official list here.
Here is what we came up with for the Colorado-specific version of the game too, if you are curious:
Teams: Ford Bronco, Chevrolet Avalanche, the Ford Nugget (a new transit camper van!), the Skoda Rapid (had to look that one up after my buddy reminded me that we have a MLS team), and a couple of college representatives; the Ford (Air Force) Falcon and the (Colorado State) Ram 1500. Can you think of any that we (or MT) missed? Does your state have even more cars with shared names than mine? Sound off in the comment section and, until next time, stay classy, Corvette Nation!
Previous Quick Shifts:
Corvette Racing at Le Mans, C8 Reviews, New Nissan Z-Car, Super Comparo, Edmunds C8, and More!
Base C8 Review, C8 Luggage Test, C3 Love, EV News, Continuations, Corvette’s First Rivalry
C8 vs Porsche Cayman, Spending $80K, MB Revealed, C8.R in iRacing, Autoblog Review, and More!