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Corvettes and all things about them



  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    "I was expecting something truly special for the 50th anniversary. I figured Chevy would so something like building a limited run of 2003 specially prepared anniversary editions featuring big horsepower and torque (500 is the number I envisioned).

    I expected something fast and exclusive- ... "

    Expectations are usually based on something. Why expect 50th at that level? What was the 25th, 35th, 40th? I'm guessing that what you really mean is you were wishing for something that was always very unlikely based on a little history.

    However, it will be interesting to see how the intersection of climbing performance and environmental concerns play out over the next decade. Where will the power curve get cut like it did in the early 70's if new CA CO2 law gets implemented in 2009 MY. Something tells me there is going to be a sweet spot there somewhere, but how to pick it before it passes will be the trick.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,490

    Yes and I think further that it also will be a very hard to hit moving target with lots of obstacles :). Also that is why I think the greatest gains will be the structural weight loss race.(10 hp and 5% better gas mileage per 100 #'s)Not only that but we are even seeing 5W-20 oil for energy conservation purposes!! So in that sense we are scrapping the bottom of the barrel when they go to less engine protection for the sake of minute' energy conservation. We have already seen overwhelming support for the "lighter" weight environmental cars (sub 2700#'s Toyota and Honda) despite evidence to the contrary that 3-5k pounds is really the safer alternative. Already the Corvette if driven under 65 mph is capable of between EPA of 19-28 mpg. To my mind this is pretty amazing for an eight cylinder sports car when 6 cylinder sports cars get way less % mpg!!! So if the platform loses 600#s, the theoretical targets using off the shelf technologies will be 30% better = 8.4 mpg or 36 mpg app.
  • vinnynyvinnyny Posts: 780

    Actually, I did mean STOCK. I hoped that Chevy might either work a deal with a tuner like Lingenfelter to produce a limited run of special editions for the factory or that Chevy would do the job in-house (either way it would be considered stock from the factory). Just as Ford has done with the new Cobra, Chevy could easily equip a Vette with a supercharger. Chevy has entered into agreements with tuners many times in the past (SLP comes readily to mind), why not do it now for the 50th anniversary? As far as the costs are concerned, check out the Lingenfelter website, pick out the options you think the car should have and tally up the total. Then apply a 20% discount to account for GM's immense buying power. What I think you'll come up with is an anniversary edition Vette that runs sub-12 second quarter miles for under $55k. I'd buy one in a heartbeat.

    I agree with your comments on a lighter car in the future. However, I was talking about a one-time good deal for Corvette fans TODAY, not a long-term solution. Hopefully, the C6 will be lighter.


    You make a good point that Chevy hasn't really done anything special with previous anniversary editions. However, the 50th anniversary of anything should be extra special--that's why they call it the "golden" anniversary. My "expectations" were based on the belief that Bob Lutz might actually take this opportunity to make a difference at Chevy right from the start.

    Chevy is in trouble. Light truck sales are the only thing keeping GM afloat. The only way GM will ever recover from its current funk in the passenger car business is to become more innovative and apply its vast resources and engineering skills to produce cars that people actually want. Why not start by doing something truly special with your flagship car for its biggest birthday?

    That said, I probably should have said "wished" versus "expected."
  • vettes2vettes2 Posts: 17
    It's posible that some of the changes that Lutz has pushed upon his arrival affected the outcome of the 50th. See hear:

  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,490

    Well I think equally as obvious is that the opportunity window you wax about has long since been shut. And I also think that if GM is in trouble, the other big guys are in worse shape. Since you have mentioned Ford, we dont have to look too far for an example.

    The other bottom line is not only does Chevrolet not build a Corvette till a firm order is in hand, but they are getting to be in a position not unlike BMW, where they don't HAVE to discount very much. In that narrow sense, GM is starting to really "get it"
  • chip78chip78 Posts: 2
    New poster. Sorry if this was covered. In coupe with top out, is the backside constructed to be legitimate rollbar protection? Don't imagine the windshield is much help given the slant. Don't see roll bars much discussed for targas or convertibles in general. Thanks.
  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    As to the roll bar capability of the coupe, all I've heard going to watch at events for the past year is that the vert's require rollbars and the coupe does not and I've seen many drive with roof panel out. Can't speak to the level of protection but seems it meets the rule requirements so that roll bar is not extra requirement.

    Or another way to look at expectations is that 350 hp meets expectations until you get used to it and raise the bar. Still satisfied, even happy to be honest!
  • A few things to consider about the 50th Anniversary -

    1. A supercharged engine would probably drop the mileage into 'gas guzzler' territory, or at very least would hurt GM's CAFE number.

    2. It would definitely raise the price.

    3. GM is selling all the Corvettes they can make, anyway.

    4. GM doesn't have infinite resources. Spending time/engineering/money/etc.. on a special 50th Anniversary edition of the C5 probably just delays the C6.
  • vinnynyvinnyny Posts: 780
    RE: "A few things to consider about the 50th Anniversary"-

    You'll notice that my solution for GM to make the 50th special relies on using a tuner like Lingenfelter to do most of the work. If you check out the Car & Driver story on the Lingenfelter supercharged Vette, you'll find the answers to your concerns:

    1. EPA City rating for the supercharged car is 18 mpg--about the same as a stock model. Besides, 2003 "gas guzzlers" aren't going to hurt GM's CAFE by more than a tenth of a mpg (if that much).

    2. The price of a loaded Lingenfelter special is $58k. If we assume that Chevy gets a volume discount but add back the additional cost (aka "price gouge") for the anniversary package and the cost comes up pretty close. Lesser 2003 Vettes would keep their standard pricing. (With a name like Machiavelli, are you really worried about the price or is all that "end justifies the means" stuff just hype?)

    3. I'm happy that Chevy is selling all the Corvettes they can make, but how does that help fans who were hoping for something more than paint and embroidery?

    4. All the design work has already been done and tested by Lingenfelter (or whichever tuner GM could have hired). Therefore, very little internal effort would be wasted by Chevy in creating the special edition.

    Chevy really missed an opportunity to show what they were about. The Corvette's 50th anniversary was the perfect opportunity to establish Chevy as a performance leader. Think of all the free publicity Chevy would have gotten as it rolled out it's limited edition Viper-, Ferrari- and Lamborghini-killer. I can visualize the headlines: Chevy introduces king of the hill version of "America's sports car".

    Check out the Lingenfelter story in the April 2002 Car & Driver.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,490

    Actually it would be far cheaper for you to buy a 50th anniversary and have the Lingerfelter modifications done on it yourself!!! Then it would be a stealth 50th.!!!
  • good point ruking1 - just have Lingerfelter build your own 50th anniversary special and it will be a real 'sleeper'!

    It would have been something nice for Corvette diehards, but I still don't think it's a great loss for GM/Chevy that they didn't do more for the 50th. It's a business. GM is selling all the Corvettes they can make. They don't really need a "special edition" to boost sales. Corvette diehards will buy all the 50th anniversary editions anyway.
  • vinnynyvinnyny Posts: 780
    I think you guys have the right idea. In fact, I'm thinking of getting one myself. I just re-read the C&D article and realized that the $58k price included a $5,235 wheel and tire package that could be deleted and a $339 boost gauge that doesn't help performance. Heck, we're talking $52k now.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,490

    Good! You know I am not trying to rain on your parade! But in addition to huge reliability and warranty concerns, they have got to be concerned with how durable add ons will be!Obviously if you put in thousands of dollars of modifications,YOU are in the drivers seat, so to speak, the major determining factor (given sound engineering and build quality) on how reliable or durable this machine can and will be.
  • vinnynyvinnyny Posts: 780
    If you like Corvettes, you have to check out the September edition of C&D. The Lingenfelter Vette whoops up on 14 other super cars. It's available online...

    Sorry if I'm starting to sound like a cheeleader for C&D and Lingenfelter!
  • Hi all,
    I just purchased a 1995 BMW 525i. In just two months, I am already having problems with the driver side power window. Can anyone tell me if this car is going to be hi-maint? It was a toss-up btwn this and a MB E300.
  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    My 2002 C5 has had 4 oil changes and a 10k service in 11 months and not worrying about hi-maint at this point, good luck.

    Don't worry about cheerleading when you are cheering on the winner, sounds like the best time to cheerlead :).
  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    Link to C&D supercar challenge: 2002/september/supercars/0209_sc_challenge_opener.xml

    Since I don't like to solve tech problems and link is over 115 ch's. just cut and paste and take the space out in front of 2002 in the middle.

    Also, didn't stop to read but at the market this AM there was a C&D comparison issue with stock Corvette vs. other sports cars, pretty nice result if you like the Vette. Don't see it on the C&D web site yet.

  • Nope, your link is dated material and no longer available it seems.

  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    If I copy the two lines of the total link, ignoring that there is a space after the / before '2002' and then delete that space after pasting the entire two lines, it works for me. Maybe I wasn't clear.
  • joelisjoelis Posts: 315
    "The other bottom line is not only does Chevrolet not build a Corvette till a firm order is in hand, but they are getting to be in a position not unlike BMW, where they don't HAVE to discount very much. In that narrow sense, GM is starting to really "get it"."

    I see advertisements in the paper all the time lately, showing $4000 off PLUS a $1000 rebate. This is the first time that GM has ever given a Rebate on a Corvette than I can remember.

    I wish I had bought mine this year instead of last year, when all I could muster up was a $3000 total discount.
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