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Why Is The 2020 Corvette So Much Faster Than The C7?

Engine / 14 Comments

Engineering Explained has the answers.

The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette was one of the most anticipated new model launches in a long time, and it didn’t disappoint. Chevrolet took the covers off the first-ever mid-engined Corvette at an event in Orange County, California, and we’ve been covering it extensively ever since.

Powering the C8 is a new 6.2-liter V8 called the LT2 that produces 495 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque – that’s 40 more hp and 10 more lb-ft than the old C7. All that power is sent through a quick-shifting 8-speed dual-clutch gearbox, which will be the only transmission option. With the Z51 Package installed, 0-62 mph takes less than three seconds.

That’s a huge upgrade over the C7 Corvette when you consider this is still the base model. To put things into perspective, the current-generation 755-hp C7 ZR1 can do the same sprint in 2.8 seconds. And despite the performance improvements, the C8 Corvette Stingray will still cost under $60,000. How has Chevrolet made the C8 Corvette so much faster than its predecessor? As always, Jason Fenske from Engineering Explained has the answers.

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Fenske explains that much of the improvement in performance has to do with the relocation of the engine. Moving the engine from the front to the mid-rear improves the car’s traction since there is now more weight over the rear tires. The aggressive gearing and constant torque provided by the dual-clutch transmission also helps improve the C8 Corvette’s acceleration, as do the Michelin PS4S tires. In theory, Fenske believes these factors will help the 2020 Corvette Stingray achieve a 0-62 mph time of 2.76 seconds, but we’ll have to wait until Chevrolet officially confirms the performance specifications. For comparison, the outgoing base Corvette Stingray does the same sprint in 3.31 seconds.

Looking ahead, Fenske predicts that higher-spec models like the Z06 and ZR1 will be able to hit 0-62 mph in just 2.5 seconds. Those are some bold claims, but we won't know for sure until Chevrolet releases more details about the C8 Corvette’s performance. Full pricing details, however, will reportedly be announced on August 15.