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2014 Chevrolet Corvette reprises Stingray name

All-new seventh-generation Corvette takes some risks in terms of styling

Published: January 14, 2013, 1:15 AM
Updated: April 29, 2018, 3:27 PM

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

It's not a revolutionary package, but neither is it safely evolutionary, as was the case for its C6 predecessor.

It is clearly a Corvette in every element of its design and engineering, but General Motors is taking some uncharacteristic risk with the styling.

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In silhouette, it displays much of the classic grace of an Aston Martin, enhanced by a separate side-window that extends the visual length of the greenhouse.

But it is replete with fussy details and its surfaces are hard-edged and angular – more in tune with the Transformer generation than the baby boomers and pre-boomers who have formed the Corvette's traditional market base.

That shift in focus is by design, as GM seeks to shift the car's appeal to a younger demographic.

Stingray name

One big aspect of the new car remained a closely-guarded secret until its reveal – the name. For the first time since 1976, the new Corvette will bear the iconic Stingray nameplate.

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The first Sting Ray was an experimental race car and the second-generation 1963-67 model was the first production car to wear the name. It faded away in the midst of the C3 (1968-82) generation, perhaps the least-loved of all Corvettes, at least to collectors.

If there is some potential for controversy in the new Stingray's styling, there is little in any other aspect of its design. Well, maybe with GM's decision to retain a pushrod configuration for its new 6.2-litre LT1 small-block V-8 engine.

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It's hard to argue with success, however, and there's no arguing with 450 horsepower and 450 lb-ft of torque. Employing advanced technologies, including direct injection and Active Fuel Management , it is the most powerful standard Corvette engine ever.

GM says it will accelerate the Stingray from 0-to-96 km/h (100 km/h) in less than four seconds, while providing better fuel efficiency than the current model.

All-new structure

The new car is said to share only two parts with the previous generation Corvette.

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Lightweight materials abound, including a carbon fibre hood and removable roof panel, composite fenders, doors and rear quarter panels and carbon-nano composite underbody panels, in addition to a new aluminum frame and chassis structure.

Advanced driving technologies include a five-position Drive Mode Selector that tailors 12 vehicle attributes to the fit the driver’s environment and a new seven-speed manual transmission with Active Rev Matching that anticipates gear selections and matches engine speed.

Dynamically the Stingray is said to be capable of developing more than 1g in cornering grip.

An available track-capable Z51 Performance Package will include an electronic limited-slip differential, dry-sump oiling system, integral brake, differential and transmission cooling and a unique aero package that further improves high-speed stability.

Upgraded interior

One of the key focal points of the redesign was the interior, which was widely considered to be a weak point in past models.

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Interior features include real carbon fibre, aluminum and hand-wrapped leather materials, two new seat choices – each featuring a lightweight magnesium frame – and dual eight-inch configurable driver/infotainment screens

"We believe the 2014 Corvette represents the future of modern performance cars because it delivers more power, more driving excitement and better fuel efficiency," says Juechter.

The new Corvette Stingray will be built at GM’s Bowling Green, Kentucky, assembly plant, and will go on sale in the third quarter of 2013.