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2021 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Z51 - Driven

2021 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Z51 - Driven

Chevy’s resident supercar squares off with more expensive models - does it stand a chance?

Chevy quite literally redefined what the Corvette name means when it unveiled the all-new, mid-engined C8 Corvette – a model that was decades in the making. Finally bringing the mid-engine configuration to the Corvette was no easy undertaking, but in the end, the new Corvette looked like a supercar, performed like a high-end sportscar, and created quite a stir in the automotive community thanks to its attractive low price. It seems impossible that a car like the C8 Corvette could retail for less than $60,000, but as promised it does ($59,995 as of the time of this writing). This makes the C8 Corvette come off as a much-cheaper alternative to many exotic cars, so how does it hold up? We spent a week with the 2021 C8 Corvette 3LT with the Z51 performance package to find out.

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2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette by Pandem

2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette by Pandem

Bless your C8 Vette with that Bosozoku vibe

Widebody kits look good on virtually any car. Whether it’s a drift-spec Toyota Supra or a humble Daihatsu Copen, everything can be tricked out to please the eye with a neatly-designed, flared-out body kit. Including the mid-engined Chevy C8 Corvette, as Pandem was kind enough to demonstrate.

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Chevrolet C8 Corvette by Extreme Turbo Systems

Chevrolet C8 Corvette by Extreme Turbo Systems

This Turbocharged C8 Corvette Is Just As Powerful as a Lamborghini Aventador S

The Chevrolet Corvette C8 is awesome in it of itself. With 495 horsepower on tap in the Z51 guise, the 2020 Vette can set a blistering pace, taking only three seconds to go from 0 to 60 mph. So if a 495-horsepower Corvette C8 Z51 is already capable of such speeds, imagine what a 736-horsepower Corvette C8 is capable of when it goes under the tuning ringer.

Extreme Turbo Systems — the name says it all — recently worked on a bone stock Corvette C8 Z51 with the goal of raising its power to supercar levels. The tuning firm even released a video of the Vette C8 strapped to a dyno rig, undergoing serious testing. The video isn’t particularly exciting, but make no mistake about it, this Corvette C8 Z51 isn’t your typical 2020 Corvette. You might even say that this Vette can give the Lamborghini Aventador S a serious run for its money.

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2020 Chevrolet Corvette C8.R

2020 Chevrolet Corvette C8.R

The latest evolution of the race-going breed

Corvette Racing, the oldest continuous program in top-level sports car racing of the modern era, unveiled its next chapter back in October when GM unexpectedly took the wraps off the C8.R, the GTE-spec race car based on the eighth-generation Corvette. It comes with a menacing body kit, a huge wing hanging over the back, and a flat-plane crank, 500 horsepower, 5.5-liter V-8 in the middle. A pair will race in the IMSA Weathertech SportsCar Championship and at Le Mans next year, so keep your eyes and ears peeled.

It was back in 1999 at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona that a factory-backed racing Corvette first took to the track in an official practice session for a race. After decades of racing in privateer hands, barring some semi-factory-backed efforts that were ultimately canned due to GM’s ban on motorsport-related activities, the Corvette finally competed with backing from Detroit. 21 years later, Corvette Racing is still taking on the world’s best on America’s road courses and beyond and its latest weapon is unarguably the craziest yet.

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2021 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Z06

2021 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Z06

The first turbocharged Corvette in history will arrive in 2020

The 2021 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Z06 is an upcoming, higher performance version of the eighth-generation Corvette. The C8 Z06 will be the first model of its kind with a mid-engined layout and, much like its predecessor, it will slot between the regular C8 Stingray and the upcoming C8 ZR1. Rumors about the new-gen Z06 have been flying around for quite some time and we already know that it will have a more aggressive body and a more powerful engine. The latter will be twin-turbocharged and related to the mill in the race-spec C8.R. But let’s find out more about that in the speculative review below.

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2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray

2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray

The first mid-engined Corvette is also the quickest and most powerful to date

The 2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette is the eighth-generation of the iconic sports cars. Unveiled in 2019 for the 2020 model year, the C8 Corvette marks a massive departure from the C7 and its predecessor. For the first time ever, the Corvette features a mid-engined layout and becomes a full-fledged sports car rather than a sporty two-seat grand tourer. In this new configuration, the 2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette competes against sports cars like the Ferrari 488 GTB, Ford GT, Lamborghini Huracan Evo, and Audi R8.

Redesigned from the ground up, the C8 is a brand-new car on the outside, but it still sports some trademark Corvette cues. The headlamps, the taillights, and the nose are clearly reminiscent of the C7 model. But the entire is entirely new and boasts more technology than any Corvette from the past. There’s big news under the rear hood as well, where Chevy stuffed a new LT2 V-8 engine. Likewise, the C8 is the first Corvette to feature a dual-clutch transmission, as well as the first of its kind to not have a manual transmission option. The C8 Corvette is also the quickest and more powerful naturally aspirated model of its kind, but more about that in the detailed review below.

Update 8/18/2019:We’ve updated this review with new pricing and performance information. Check out what’s new in our review below!

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2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette ZR1

2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette ZR1

The first mid-engined ZR1 should be here in 2020

The 2021 Chevrolet C8 Corvette ZR1 is an upcoming high-performance version of the eighth-generation Corvette. Likely to debut toward the end of 2020, the Corvette ZR1 should become the range-topping version of the C8 Corvette lineup and sit above the upcoming Corvette Z06. Details are slim as of 2019, but the 2021 Corvette ZR1 should feature a more aggressive and more aerodynamic body, extra carbon-fiber, a V-8 with forced induction (it could even be a hybrid), and a beefed-up chassis packed with race-bred components.

Original rumors claimed that the ZR1 might feature a "Zora" badge in honor of former GM engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov, also known as the "father of the Corvette" and the man who experimented with mid-engined Corvette designs back in the day. It seems that this rumor might not become a reality, but the C8 ZR1 could be a massive departure from its predecessor thanks to a hybrid layout and all-wheel drive. Of course, this has yet to be confirmed, but Chevy did admit that the C8 Corvette was developed with electrification in mind. Let’s find out more about that in the review below.

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