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Chevy Just Revealed the Mid-Engine Corvette Convertible


By Annie White, Car and Driver

  • Chevrolet revealed the convertible version of the mid-engine, eighth-generation Corvette today in Florida.
  • The Corvette Stingray convertible will have a power-folding hard top.
  • The convertible will enter production in late 2019, with deliveries to follow in early 2020.

Most Corvette buyers were alive during the space race, so they won't need reminding of the connection between astronauts and Chevrolet's budget supercar. For those of you who aren't up on your Tom Wolfe, know that when Chevrolet staged the launch of the eighth-generation Corvette convertible at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the company was playing on a glorious history that they hope you'll remember.


The convertible looks just as we expected it to, based on a rendering released by Chevrolet at the launch of the targa-top version of the mid-engine Corvette and a partly camouflaged prototype we spotted at a car show this summer. This Corvette convertible will be the first with a power-folding hard top instead of a soft top. Chevy says that in addition to a cleaner look, the hard top will offer better aerodynamics than a cloth top would. With the spoiler, the same as the one in the coupe's Z51 Performance package, the coupe and convertible will have the same drag coefficient.


The top folds with the help of six electric motors, can stow beneath the tonneau cover in as little as 16 seconds, and operates at speeds up to 30 mph. The convertible's design doesn't stray far from the coupe's, but two buttresses extending behind the headrests and a flat deck lid (no view into the engine compartment on this model) distinguish it from the targa. The top stows under the tonneau cover and above the engine, preserving all of the coupe's available cargo space. The roof panels are designed to resist the heat that the engine will generate, and a vent on the decklid appears to be designed for engine cooling.


The convertible will share the Stingray coupe's naturally aspirated 6.2-liter engine and eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. That powertrain makes 495 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque when equipped with the available performance exhaust. The C8's chassis was revised slightly for this application, with new tuning for the springs and dampers, which Chevrolet says will help the convertible retain "nearly the same" performance as the coupe.

The convertible will cost $7500 more than the coupe, which will keep base models below $68,000. The car will start production in late 2019, with deliveries to follow in the first quarter of 2020.


Chevy also rolled out a C8R race car and will be giving details on it later this month; C/D will bring them to you as soon as we get them.



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