What does its design tell us about how Chevy sees the C8?
Even though the Corvette C8’s reveal isn’t set to happen until next week, it almost feels as if we’ve already seen all there is to see about the car. Credit countless spy shots, renderings galore, and even a few sneak peeks for that. But even with so much C8 material floating around, it seems as if no one at the Big Bowtie really thinks we’ve seen enough of the car yet. How do we know that? Because Chevy has just unleashed another C8 teaser.
Rather than detail what the car’s revolutionary new exterior will look like, this teaser focuses on the Corvette’s interior. Or one piece of it, rather.
That piece would be the mild-engine ‘Vette’s new steering wheel, documented here in a series of photographs titled, "Steering Wheels of the Corvette.” As its name implies, the series depicts how the part that cements the connection between car and driver has evolved throughout the years.
Starting with the first-, second-, and third-generation Corvettes, the steering wheel is about as utilitarian as it gets. Three medal spokes and a fairly thin wheel define the first Corvette iterations, though the third-gen 'Vette did see the wheel’s rim get thicker. The 4th-generation Corvette takes a sharp turn towards modernity, with the steering wheel losing its bottom spoke and the dashboard featuring plastic construction and plenty of digital readouts.
The fifth-generation Corvette highlights some of Chevrolet’s tougher years, with the four-spoke steering wheel looking like it was snatched from the General Motors parts bin, given the embossed double-flag logo, and had no other changes done to it in order to migrate it to the Corvette.
The 6th-generation wheel returns to the classic three-spoke setup and is the first wheel to gain buttons that control something other than the horn, while the current 7th-gen Corvette keeps its triple-spoke orientation, gains even more buttons, and sees the inclusion of premium materials like Alcantara. And now that we have the C8’s wheel on hand to digest, we can infer that Chevy is making huge changes, signaled by the fact it went back to a twin-spoke wheel like it did when the 4th-gen transitioned the Corvette into the digital era.