Chevy definitely has its PR work cut out for it.
The automotive industry as a whole has been having a harder time than usual selling cars to young people of late, but Chevrolet has noticed a particularly uncomfortable fact about Corvette ownership. Much like its rival, the Porsche 911, the Corvette suffers from having a certain reputation as a mid-life crisis car. But unlike the 911, the Corvette also suffers from a longstanding reputation for being an unsophisticated, bargain bin, cheaply made sports car.
Now, let’s be clear, the C7 Corvette does not deserve this reputation, and neither did the C6, but it would be foolish to say that Chevrolet didn’t do this to themselves with some earlier and seriously sub-par generations of the car. But despite Chevy’s best engineering efforts, the average age of Corvette owners continues to climb, and is now in the late 50s, rapidly approaching 60. Not only that, but despite the Corvette still being the best-selling car in America in its segment, sales are increasingly moving toward noncoastal states, with those on both coasts preferring European sports cars.
The new Vette has indeed managed to lure away at least a few customers who would have otherwise bought a Ferrari. Though Chevy’s engineering work is solid, there is now the long uphill battle of changing the public perception of the car’s image. There is optimism at Chevy that this can be done, especially with the new and more competitive design of the C7. As the car’s chief engineer, Tadge Juechter, puts it “Now it's simply a new car, a fresh start.”