America’s Exotic Car

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The Corvette used to be America’s sports car. It will soon be America’s exotic car.

Something gained – maybe something lost.

The next one – on deck for 2019 – will apparently be mid-engined, exotic in itself and certainly by Corvette-historic standards. The pushrod/two valve V8 will still be there, of course – one assumes – but beyond that and the name, what else will this Corvette have in common with all the ones that came before?

Very little.

Probably this will also include the car’s price.

It is already high. Not yet quite exotic (six figures being the water mark) but. . . . getting there. The current car’s base price – $55,400 – is still a steal compared with what out-of-the-closet exotics go for (and the Corvette’s performance is actually better than a number of exotics) but it’s no longer just a bit of stretch more than it would have been back in the ’70s or ’80s, even, to get into one vs. getting into a loaded Z28, say.

In 1977 – 40 years ago – the base price of a new Corvette was $$7,768 ($30,765 in today’s money). A brand-new Z28, meanwhile, stickered for $5,170 ($20,475) that same year. The difference in dollars – if not percentages – wasn’t that forbidding.

Only about $2,000 (in 1977 money). If you could afford a new Z28, you could almost afford a new Corvette. It might take some saving, some crimping . . .  but, realistic.

Doable.

Today, 2017, a new Camaro SS (the latter-day equivalent of what the Z28 used to be, back in the ’70s) starts at $36,905 – about six thousand dollars more in real (inflation adjusted) dollars than a ’77 Corvette.

Granted, the ’17 SS has literally more than twice the power (a base ’77 Corvette with the standard L-48 350 packed all of 180 hp; the new SS has 420) and it has orders of magnitude superior brakes, wheels and tires, stereo and amenities generally.

Still, the fact remains: The new SS is now at the same economic level that the Corvette used to occupy . And the current Corvette is at a level occupied by . . . exotics. On the lower end of the scale, perhaps.

But no less so because of that.

The guy – and it is almost always a guy – who can afford a new SS probably can’t afford a new Corvette – which (like the Camaro) costs a lot more than a Corvette used to cost.

It’s already a big bump up from the cost of a ’77 Z28 to the cost of a ’17 SS – and it’s another $20k jump from There to Here. Not easily done – and probably not by the same guy.

It will be a different guy.

The next Corvette – the mid-engined one on deck for 2019 – makes this shifting marketing strategy explicit. Chevy is going full monte, whole hog.

Exotic layout. . .  probably exotic in price.

A new kind of buyer is being courted. The people buying Corvettes today are not the same kinds of people who bought Corvettes back in ’77. For openers, they do not wrench. They pay others to. They are upmarket people. Ferrari and Porsche people.

Exotic people.

That’s who Chevy is going fishing for.

There is, however, a potential rub.

Chevy.

One wonders whether they – Chevy, the people in charge – have considered this. The fact that an exotic and Chevy might make for an odd couple. Back in ’77, the guy who pinched a few pennies and moved from a Z28 to a Corvette didn’t mind getting his ‘Vette serviced at the same place the guys who bought Z28s (and Chevettes) got their cars serviced. It was not unlike having the nicest house on the block; maybe so – but you were still part of the same neighborhood.

But will exotic people cotton to having to sit in the same waiting room as Aveo-owning proles? Will Chevy ever have the cachet that Porsche does?

We are talking about an entirely different neighborhood. A gated community neighborhood.

Whether the Corvette is a superior machine may be irrelevant, once a certain price threshold has been reached. The level at which you are buying something more than lap times, G forces and top speed. A Kawasaki ZX1400 can toy with a Ducati on the race track. But the Ducati is a Ducati… and people (certain people) will happily pay twice the Kaw’s price to be able to say they own a Ducati.

And they don’t care that the Kaw is quicker around the track.

So it’s a gamble. A big one.

Chevy made a lot of hay out of beating the exotics on the race track with a car that didn’t have an exotic car price tag. It was a kind of automotive Trump presidential run – a tire-frying, sideways drifting Up Yours! to the brie-tasting, Bruno Magli-wearing Ferrari/Porsche people.

That was America’s sports car.

Bruce Springsteen, Heavy Metal, cruising on Saturday nights, hood i

What’s on deck is an exotic car that happens to be made in America.

Times change. Whether for the better we’ll soon find out.

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57 COMMENTS

  1. I once owned a ’73 Monte Carlo with plenty of special accessories that I now regretfully traded off for a “car of the year” clone of the Ford Escort. You see, I was in my early 20’s back in the early “80’s, and my cars transmission was making weird noises as it shifted + the vinyl top was ripping apart. I traded that excellent car in for a piece of crap Mercury Lynx that was only a year old! It was a 5 door hatchback, and it could only do 55 mpr in a quarter mile if I manually shifted its automatic tranny, and it would top off at 88 mph.
    I then went shopping for a better car in the late 80’s. I wanted to buy a Buick Grand National, but I quickly learned that I lacked sufficient funds and credit. I almost bought a Nisson Pulsar, but my monthly insurance payments for it was nearly half of what my loan payments would have been.
    I then test drove an inline 6 cylinder Camaro on a test drive, but it lacked the spunk that I sought and my insurance payments would have remained very high. Keep in mind that nearly all cars in the late ’80’s wre pathetic performance-wise. I settled for an ’87 Cavalier Z-24 with a HO 2.8L V-6 engine which had vastly more spunk than the Camaro did, and my insurance costs dropped dramatically! This car very badly needed an overdrive gear, but I loved it never-the-less! I have actually road raced a Camaro with it, and it outperformed the non-Z28 Camaro! Racing with the car beside me at a stoplight wasn’t even in my mind when the light turned green and I heard him floor it. I did likewise. He was about 1.5 car lengths ahead of me and we were accelerating at the exact same rate. I was able to gain on him every time we hit a rise in the road. We finally came upon a stoplight and had to shut them down, but my bumper was even to the front of his door by that time. I had been running at 110 mph with the tach in the red in the 5500 or so RPM range. That car could have easily handled one more gear.
    Sadly, the sideways engine motor mounts wore out and quickly destroyed the transmission, so I sold it to someone who had time to replace it. I had no idea that my mounts had worn out on this car which only had a little more than 100,000 miles on it, and I had no idea that worn mounts could ruin a transaxle.

    • Brian, a friend with a ’77 Z 28 that burned to the ground was in the need of a new vehicle or two. He bought a new ’82 Vette and then a slightly used Vette, a his and hers thing(his used). His insurance payment for two people early 30’s no tickets or wrecks amounted to more than his car payments.

      I can only wonder if that same 30 year old husband and wife with clean records are facing that sort of insurance now on a new Vette. That could really screw the pooch on being affordable.

      • 8southman, back then the speed limit was 55, so of course I had points against my license. My previous car. the ’73 Monte Carlo, had a pair of burned out 12 inch glass packs and a stuck open smog motor. That car was super loud when I floored it, and a few seconds after I let off of it you would hear a BANG, POP,pop,pop,pop. I have literally set off alarm systems with my exhaust pipes, and I have literally seen the reflection of white light in the grassy ditches beside me with that car. Additionally, one of the tail pipes were jeggedly split outward like an exploded aerisol can. Well, I floored it leaving my small town, and I returned to town about a half hour later figuring that the local cops wouldn’t know that it was I who had made so much noise earlier. Well, I got pulled over and the cop threatened to give me a DUI test if I didn’t accept his reckless and imprudent driving ticket. I had indeed been drinking a couple of beers, but I was far from being drunk. I thought that he was doing me a favor, but I learned otherwise when I received my insurance bill! I was not nearly as educated as I am now about dealing with cops. He had no proof that I was the one making all of that noise+ nothing I did was reckless! My tires didn’t even spin! (i wanted them to last)

        • Brian, never let it be said a cop doesn’t have a plethora of lies for every situation.

          In my younger days my MO was often cut-outs open. Probably few here remember cut-outs that were eventually made illegal. I loved the flames at night and with compression ratios often being close to 12-1 that wide open exhaust was music to a teenage ear and devil worshiping to the old farts.

          I was about to leave my parent’s house with my best friend and decided it was easier to remove 2 1/2″ pipe plugs cold than hot so a couple minutes with the old adjustable wrench and they were where they should be, in my view, inside the car.

          I roll in on the farm road, get to the highway and head out of town. The electric company had a huge parking lot and were right inside the city limits. A couple blocks after turning we see all the hot cars on this lot and thinking we were missing something headed that way……slowly. Ah shit, then we saw the cherries on the lights of the local DPS and drove by slowly. in neutral, idling…..trying to not make any noise. Naturally both DPS and everybody else stopped talking and stared at us going by.

          Not being a total fool I costed it as far as it would go, not out of sight as I’d liked. Everyone could see us from the parking lot when it rolled to a stop. We got out raised the hood and bs’s about what we might be doing and I took time to fiddle with this and that but it was all for show since I’d just tuned her up. We decided the problem was under so we looked under it all around while it was cooling and finally took the plugs and inserted them from the other side of the car where they couldn’t see, the problem being, it was way too close to the ground to get to the driver’s side so I got down to look under it, my friend threw me the plug and I screwed it in hand tight. Well, not much to do but ease back into town where the crowd waited and pull into the lot with the DPS motioning to pull in. He starts in on me and says he’ll repeat what he was telling everyone else, No Damned open exhaust or we’d be getting multiple tickets since town wasn’t a race track and blah blah blah and did we understand? Heads bobbing up and down so he finally leaves. Then everybody breaks out in a big guffaw at me driving right into the shitty and nobody else had their cut-outs open.

          So, like every other Satiddy night we ended up on a farm road less than a mile from town, exhausts wide open and it was race city. Of course the DPS heard it and came fast so we all split, some taking the dirt road at the end of the quarter and some, like myself, with little to lose, just nailed it and out ran the black and white. We decided to go to another town and just kept going for it. We knew what we’d find if we kept going on that road, the cops at the other town waiting for us. We stopped and corked it and took a route that had us coming back in the opposite direction. I managed to hit a backstreet and go through town on city streets and back to the house. We parked in the back yard. My parents were out there enjoying the evening. Why are yall back so early? Oh, we decided to go fishing or rabbit hunting. We loaded the cooler and guns into the pickup and cruised town for a while, then went backroading and shooting signs for few hours. Drove by the DPS’s house and being it was late, the car was sitting there still tinking with heat. Then we changed vehicles and went back to town. All right, which one of you sumbitches wants to race? By this time they knew a ’66 SS a guy who lived about a quarter mile from me owned and my car being in town were the only contenders. That was typical. Back then Tx. had n points system and still doesn’t but has a maximum allowable tickets which works fairly much the same. I think it was that year I had 13 tickets but got them in enough counties I didn’t have to go to court. Oh, I got a ticket for loud exhausts with brand new Cherry Bombs on the car, receipt in my bill fold showing they were less than a month old. JP in Slaton, Tx. just didn’t give a shit about the receipt and fined me for them anyway, the DPS’s word trumping anything I had to say or any evidence to the contrary. Guilty, guilty as charged. The Dewey Cox Story.

    • Great story! Yep: My first car was an ’82 Mustang L: 2.3L 4cyl w/3speed automatic. That car was the absolute worst car I had ever owned! Leaked more oil than gas. On a road trip to Syracuse and back (from DC) it took a case of oil! However, it *did* get me through my college years. I got out of college in ’89 and was itchin’ to get a new car, and was looking hard at Miata’s, 240 SX’es and Celicas. I knew then *not* to get any 4cyl car from any domestic manufacturer. (That adage still holds true today, BTW) I decided to try Ford (and the Mustang) one last time. However, this time it was an ’88 GT w/5.0L and 5sp manual. One of the best cars I’ve ever owned. Had to trade it once 2nd kid came along. (Shoulda kept it).

    • I disagree. I think if GM wants to build a mid-engine car — a proper sports car, as the chaps on Top Gear would probably say — let them introduce a new nameplate and leave the Corvette whatever it has always been. They HAD one, 30 years ago, if only they hadn’t put that stupid 2.5 and later the 2.8 in it. A 3.8 or a 5.0 in a Fiero? Yeah, maybe the name Pontiac wouldn’t just be a city in Michigan these days…

  2. My guess would be that future Corvette owners won’t have to take their exotics in for service. The local Corvette-certified dealer will send a Silverado with a trailer to their home to pick it up, and return it washed & with a full gas tank.

  3. If I can afford it, I’d buy one. I love mid-engine cars, and I love wrenching on cars myself. My current track-car is a mid-engined Lotus Elise, and the handling is like nothing else out there. I run comparable lap times to high horsepower cars despite having less than 220 HP, I simply don’t have to slow down as much as they do for turns. The Elise has an engine from a Toyota Celica (they made like a million of these things), so parts are plentiful and cheap.

    That’s the allure of Corvettes for people like me. Vettes have the second biggest after-market parts industry out there, second only to the Miata. You can buy corvette rotors cheaper than those for a economy car, and have a slew of upgrades to choose from too. Now, messing with the Corvette formula will make some of those parts unusable, but they will probably still dip into the GM parts bin for most things.

    If they come up with an affordable “exotic” for people who care more about driving than image, they may have something on their hands. It won’t be a “corvette”, and I think they know that, but it could be its own excellent thing.

  4. Eric, you mention the exotic people hanging in the waiting area with the proles. I can relate. Here in my Central Pennsylvania college town, the local Mercedes dealer also owns a buy here – pay here sub-prime used car franchise. To make sure that their Mercedes customers never have to rub shoulders with the common folk, they intentionally placed the sub-prime dealership a good mile away from the Mercedes store.

    • Hi Kitty,

      Yup!

      I don’t blame them.

      I would not be surprised to see GM require that Chevy stores wanting to sell Corvettes have a separate service/waiting area and other amenities for these customers.

      • eric, you are aware only certain dealers can sell a Vette aren’t you? Since 1 in every 6 pickups sold are in Tx. the dealers here almost always have a separate facility just for light trucks and another for used light trucks.

        • I would like to own a ’78 Corvette with the L-82 350 and four speed. That was a nice package. The new car is, of course, much speedier. But it’s an air-bag festooned computer-addled throw-away with no character.

          • That ’78 could be tuned to go a-lot faster then it does stock too. It’s tiny compared with the Corvettes of the last decade or so. My neighbor was showing his 2000 at a local car show, and the guy next to him had a ’78 or ’79. Those late 1970’s ones are dwarfed size wise by the new ones.

            (funny side note: when google maps updated their overhead pics, my neighbor had his parked outside, since its bright red, its very clear what it is).

          • eric, the L 82 was under-rated as far as stated power. Throw the intake, exhaust and smog pump in the woods and replace with something like the highest rise Edelbrock Victor 180 degree or Weiand Team G intake, a good tube header and whatever you could fit where the factory mufflers would go in 2 1/2″ and they’d make considerable power. I’d say use angle plug heads but you’d probably never find a set of headers to fit them.

              • Hi Eric,
                the L82 used much less desireable 882 (smog) casting heads vs. the 186/487 heads found on the earlier LT1 motors. Not to mention two points lower compression vs. the 1970 LT1.
                Even the 487s found on the 330hp LT1s were open chamber heads (thus the lower compression ratio).
                I would be impressed if you got much over 300 crank hp out of a 350 with unported 882s (not to mention factory pistons with a probable quench height of .060″+).

                  • IIRC it was a 4 bolt main block. Beyond that, I dunno.
                    Sometimes I think the general forgot how to build motors for a (long) stretch beginning in the early 70s…

                    • Back then it was the “drive it like an old lady on Sunday, drive it like an on Monday”. 55 mph, WTF does anyone need power for, esp. since we’re sitting on our asses not trying to make any power and selling cars on our former glory days.
                      Those days of letting the bean counters build a car nearly did in the entire domestic car industry when you could get a turbo Celica that would eat any Detroit iron for lunch. Hell, if it doesn’t make power for get the good parts. I’m surprised they didn’t start making non-balanced engines. You could only get a 305 in a half ton pickup the next year. I had a ’77 Silverado with a 350 and a friend had a 78 that wouldn’t sniff the exhaust on the ’77. Who knows what evil lies in the heart of a corporate bean counter? Plenty of it for certain.

                      Those under-powered pickups due to CAFE and GM not having enough shit cars left Ford with the pickup market given to them by proxy. Who wants a 307 work truck?….nobody after a few buy one and they aren’t worth throwing away. Years of GM pickups were literally engine transplanted by owners, generally, the second owner(I got a killer SBC out there in that wrecked (fill in the blank). We’ll take the 307 out and let the scrap guy have it. I recall people taking out SBC’s and putting in the “spare” 454 dual carb engine with the TH 400 that was with it. Pretty soon that car rear-end was in the scrap pile and the old full-floater out of a crewcab was installed via a new driveshaft along with 3/4 or 1 ton springs and shocks. I know, it was me…..and I still have it except mine was a single carb.

                    • Hi Eight,
                      the old man put a warmed up 468 (somewhere between 400-450 hp) into an 86 1/2 ton RCSB chevy once.
                      The motor was originally to go into our Super Gas car but plans changed so we swapped out the Brodix heads for some 781s and stabbed in a mild-ish hydraulic cam in lieu of the solid roller.
                      Nice upgrade from the rolling asthma attack 305 it came with, had to get it rolling 50+ mph before going WOT unless you wanted to burn rubber…
                      Also have had an F150 with a (stock) 460 transplant and another F150 that got a (stock again) 455 poncho in it.
                      The stock 455 pushed that 4000# truck to 14.30s in the 1/4 mile.

                  • dbb, eric, I loathed the 80’s. My not so car-wise sister bought herself a brand new Toronado, I’m thinking an ’86. Big 307 pulling all that weight. It was pitiful. I drove it some years into use. I needed to stop fast to avoid a deer. I stood on the brake and it eventually slowed to a stop with nary a chirp of a tire. I told her son, my nephew, that car needed a brake job bad and told him what happened. He said it was that way from day one. Of course she loved it. It was such a good car. It handled like a rowboat and was about as speedy and stopped almost as quickly. Hell, it was weak in the ass too, something rare to an Olds. pssssssss, wow, we’re really moving now…..passssss, that badass exhaust note.

  5. I hate the idea, but I do believe they’ll find buyers for them. Ford successfully sold the last GT to wealthy car collectors. Not sure how much interest there will be with this new EcoBoost model. The new one is nowhere near as attractive as the last one. The last GT retained almost every design element from the original GT40.

    I do believe cars are deliberately becoming more expensive to discourage average folks from owning a car “in order to slow the effects of climate change”.

    • Hi Handler,

      The new Ford GT is so rare they’re not even putting them in the press fleet … and getting into a Corvette has become like getting into a Lamborghini.

      When it’s hard for a car journalist to get a ride you can imagine where things are headed!

  6. Be careful to be specific when referring to the “Camaro SS”

    The lovely Holden Commodore (Just SS here) looks like a really great sleeper, and it’s too bad Holden has been sent to the glue factory. 🙁

  7. “A Kawasaki ZX1400 can toy with a Ducati on the race track.

    And they don’t care that the Kaw is quicker around the track.”

    What’s a ZX1400? Do you mean ZX-14R? And the only track a ZX-14R is going to toy with (most) Ducati models is in the quarter.

    “Around” the track a ZX-14R is going to get destroyed by all but the low end Monsters or supermotos.

  8. Jerry Seinfeld had a good line about the Ford LTD. “LTD stands for Limited. You know what it’s limited to? How many of these damn things we can sell, that’s what it’s limited to!”

    Once Chevy started limiting production -and announcing the number- on the Corvette it was the beginning of the end for making it attainable. My third grade teacher had a low end C3, which made her about the coolest woman on Earth. A midlevel bank exec who went to our church bought his daughter a used C4 when she graduated college. You’d see them around town, daily drivers. Old guys looking for a hobby picked up used ‘vetts on the cheap because they were more drivable than the antiques tooling around the car shows but still turned heads (and didn’t have a lot of body rust to deal with). There wasn’t anything overly special about them, but they were special anyway because of they are completely impractical if you have kids and a dog. Single women bought them because they could afford the insurance. Single men who could otherwise make the monthly payment didn’t, because the insurance mafia claimed we were all unsafe drivers. Since marketing sports cars to women is hard, GM went up market.

    Now they only allow a small number of dealers to sell it. My guess is there’s a separate entrance for the Corvette buyers, so they don’t have to interact with the Hoi polloi. Most of them will end up in collections and be trailer queens. But they’ll look great on The Grand Tour and covers of magazines. And in a few years we’ll see them pop up on Barrett-Jackson Auctions for 2X or more sticker. And the buyers will get exactly what they wanted (a good ROI), by selling it to some new money Chinese or Arabs.

    • I’d love to have a ’70-’72 coupe with a 350 and a four speed.

      Those cars looked like nothing else – and still do.

      The new Corvette is striking – I will give it that. But it looks more like the other insectoid exotics. The analogy is sport bikes. How do you tell the difference? A Honda has red body cladding, a Kaw is green… and so on…

      • I usually have Velocity network on at the office when I’m doing other work. The Barrett-Jackson auction coverage is on this week and I noticed a few 60s and 70s Corvettes come up. Two in a row had LS-1 crate engines installed. I guess it is a pretty easy mod, so that’s the new normal.

        I wonder if all the wind tunnel testing has been a good thing for automobiles? Seems to me the constant refinement has basically made cars into 3 shapes: Car shape (modified for a hatchback), SUV shape, and truck shape. Then you have the exotics, which are presented as the ultimate purpose-built machine, go fast and hard and that’s it. The wind tunnel determines the shape, not a designer. If I had the money to spend on a Ferrari I’d be looking at the (unfortunately named) California before I’d even consider a 458. But I don’t like cartoonishly fake boobs either, and that seems to appeal to the rich young bucks in China and Russia too.

        • Hi Eric,

          Agreed…

          If you’re racing – serious business – I get function being the only thing that matters. But on the street? Style matters… or does to me.

          Motorcycles, again: The current Kaw/Honda/Suzuki liter bikes are all full-on race bikes that happen to be street legal. And they all look the same. You tell them apart by the color of the cladding.

          My ZRX1200 can’t match them in any category of performance. So what?

          It’s still good for a 10 second quarter, tops out around 170 and looks like nothing else on the road.

        • Years back I worked in a “German air cooled engine” car shop… mostly VeeWees with a fair number of Porsche cars tossed in for some extra spice. Lots of old Bathtubs, some early coupes, a fair number of 912/911 cars…. I was the only wrencn on ths shop floor who had any signficant understanding of non-air cooiled iron. This turned to my favour, as quite a number of our Porsche clients also had other “interesting” iron. Things like a 1947 Rolls Royce with electrical system issues (Locas wiring, piece of cake, hero status earned for not much). The most interesting one, though, was a 1967 Ferrari 350 GTB California. The owner was one of our 911 S custmoers, and was looking for someone to do a tune up, balance and synch the carburetters, and checkup. Didn’t even have to raise my hand to get called on for that one. The best part of the day came once the work was done, there was no way I’d sign off on that one until I’d taken it out and MADE CERTAIN it did what it was supposed to do. Which it certainly did. Five speed crash box, HEAVY clutch, no power assist in the steering. But when that Vee Twelve came onto the cams and started to climb on the rev counter, oh my. I only found enough road to let Third gear find Redline….. I seem to remember that put the clock near 90 MPH. THAT was one of the sweetest sounding engined I’d ever heard. Satisfied I’d done MY bit well, I sadly pointed it toward the shop to write it up and find the next one on the board… or should I say “bored”? Probably one of those filthy air cooled boxer fours from Wolfsburg….. oh well. They all paid the same come Friday, but that Ferrari somehow sticks in the sweet spot of my memory.

            • Too bad the 365 in the movie was a replica (granted a nice one). Even in the 1980’s those were million dollar cars. No one was going to loan them one, since they were going to abuse it.

    • The local to me chevy dealer still sells a ton of vettes the same way as always. Go see them parked on the lot over by the back doors to service and the defunct K-mart’s parking lot. Not exactly the luxury experience….. But they sell a lot of them.

  9. I was considering a corvette at some point in the future, but if it goes exotic forget about it. Nobody’s going to look at the Corvette driving down the street & think wow this guy is Porsche rich. And absolutely NO ONE is going to look at one and think Ferrari rich.

  10. Going from today’s corvette to a mid engine one could be done without tremendous added expense. There’s nothing to make it more expensive from an engineering standpoint any longer. GM can certainly afford the engineers that can find the way to maintain price point. If done correctly all we are talking about is a shift linkage for the MT and they might drop that. With fly by wire that’s solved. Everything else is already in the vette one way another. A cost wash. The big adder would if a new trans entirely is needed… but those are made in china now.

    • BrentP,

      Agreed. Lotus did it with Toyota’s Celica GTS engine, including mechanical shift linkage. And the system should be more reliable – fewer components. And if a small company like Lotus can do it with another company’s drive train, GM should be able to do it with their own drive train. And it should be no more expensive than the current model, except for additions required by Uncle.

      Git rid of OnStar, then they might have a product I’d like…

      • Michael, no shit, the only OnStar vehicle I’ll have any money in is the one hauling my carcass. I kick myself every day for buying that damned 2000 Z 71. This light and that light and everything else comes and go regardless of what really happening. And the damned interior, sheesh, talk about no room. My ’93 Ext. cab had room under the front seats for lots of things, room for lots of things in the console and under the cup holder portion of the console where I kept VOM’s and the like. It even had a pad in the bottom of the console that was glued down you could pull out and line the console with Benjamins in case of emergency and nobody would ever find them.

        The back had big pockets by the back seat that you could remove and stuff parts and whatnot in between the outside and inside body panels(great place for extra hoses and soft things). The 2000 has zip for storage in that shitty little console that goes to the dash????where the ’93 had 4′ or more from the captain’s chairs to the firewall and a big hump with tow shifters in front of the much larger console. It was raining the other day so I pulled on my oldest Resistol and got in the 2000……and didn’t have enough head room….and if everybody’s assessment of my brain is correct I have a mighty small head. If I was a prayin man, I’d send a message many times a day to let me find a good condition 93 again and I’d gradually have it like new. If the damned things weren’t so over-priced I’d pay a new truck price for a new old truck.

  11. I am guessing they intend on making Corvette a stand alone brand at some point. That would be both good and bad I suppose. That could set up for more then one type of model (more then just variations of one basic car), and ditch the low rent Chevy baggage. They could continue to make something like the current set up, and add a new model as a very low volume exotic. Though Corvette as it stands today is pretty low volume, so I don’t know if it could make GM any worthwhile money if they only sell a couple hundred of them (likely if it’s 150k+).

    It would at least leave Camaro at the Chevy store as the aspiration model, though its gotten pretty pricey too. My guess if Corvette is a stand alone brand, very few dealers would actually have it, as the current nitwit marketing types think that every brand is like Apple (they are not), and that people will travel further to fewer flagship type store (one of the worst and most stupid ideas of the last decade).

    It would be too bad if they made the Corvette even more expensive then it has already become. You do see Corvettes pretty often, there are at least two of them on my block alone. I think if they become as rare as other exotics, they will likely be forgotten, as most people don’t think much of those types of cars, since they know they will never own one. I think as it stands most people think they could own a Corvette, even if its an old one. That would stop if even old Corvettes stay in the expensive column.

    • Chevy need the Corvette to market the bowtie. Everyone understands that GM is the parent company, but you don’t go to the GM dealer, you go to the Chevy dealer. If GM were to spin it off into it’s own brand they’d lose one of the most powerful advertisements they have. The press and bloggers will go nuts over this new Corvette for a free lunch and track day experience. The few dealers who will be selling it will have one in the showroom, just like the Audi dealer has an R-10 sitting there (although the dealer I used actually sold a number of them, but it was the closest dealer to Aspen). For sure every dealer will have a Corvette poster or two around. They probably even have some parts like control knobs that look like parts from other Chevys.

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