Chevrolet Chevrolet C7. (source: Motor Trend)
According to Motor Trend, well-placed sources have confirmed GM has put the next-generation C7 Corvette program on hold, pending a review of the impact of the 35-mpg CAFE laws due to come into effect in 2020.
The problem for GM is that, while 35 mpg is the target for 2020, automakers have no idea what the transitional fuel-consumption targets are in the interim. In other words, they have no idea how they should be planning to get from today's CAFE number to 2020's. Transitional fuel-consumption targets are not expected to be finalized until the end of 2009.
The Corvette; such an iconic GM vehicle. It's the car that everyone loves, and has a place in the hearts and minds of millions of people around the world. It's Chevrolet's equivalent of the 911, and the two vastly different cars are often compared head to head as ideological opposites.
The car that can compare with rivals costing far more; that car is the Corvette. And that's the car we had the task of redesigning, quite possibly the hardest of all the RIA cars we have done before. Our hardest vehicle, in the hardest lineup. Efforts in this lineup have culminated with, and in our idea of what the next generation C7 Corvette should be.
In this RIA, our C7 Corvette's styling follows an more evolutionary, rather then revolutionary path. Overall the car is much more emotional and dramatic, with a more planted stance and low-slung look. Things like a swooping downward character line add drama and excitement to the car, while still retaining that unmistakable Corvette look.
We followed the mantra of "don't mess with success" in hammering out the details on the C7, especially in regards to price. The Corvette is an attainable supercar, and that's something that shouldn't be changed.
The LT starts at $47,150 and bumps up the horsepower from current C6 levels to 450HP. And, as is the case now, is available in a few different packages, 1LT, 2LT and 3LT.
Z06, which starts at $70,250, increases the HP level to 600HP from it's 7.0L LS7 V8. A new addition to the model line is the "Super Corvette", which we have called the Corvette SS. The Corvette SS, starting at $115,000, has a supercharged version of the engine, making 850HP. The SS also adds features like ceramic brakes, something GM has opted out of the current car because of the over $10k cost. The price has been brought down though, however and it's a feature that certainly should be present on the very best of Corvettes.
Lots of debate on where to take the Corvette, both in RIA and inside GM. Some have said to take the Corvette mid-engine. That's the worst course of action because it destroys the very essence of the Corvette in that it's an attainable supercar. In price as well as styling, future Corvettes should stick to the principles that made it what it is. A mid-engined vehicle has it's place at Cadillac, but not as a Corvette. Our proposed C7 Corvette arrives around the time of the production vehicle, in 2010 as a 2011 model.
(text source: GM Inside News)
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