Yes, you read that right. In 2017, the Corvette will finally introduce a mid-engine layout it was always meant for, with the C8 Corvette Zora, or perhaps the C7 Corvette ZR1.
Of course, those in-the-know have long heard murmurings of a mid-engine ‘Vette, and Chevy has even built several prototypes in the past – such as the 1976 Aerovette and the 1990 CERV III. But General Motors has always entertained the idea with caution, knowing that it’s an expensive change, and one that could potentially alienate a lot of the brand’s die hard loyalists.
Apparently, Chevrolet has decided that America is finally ready. The new Zora-ZR1 supercar will sit at the top of the Corvette range, above the 650 hp Z06, and (for a time) stand alone in offering the MR layout, likely sold alongside the current C7. It’s expected to still maintain Chevrolet’s beloved Small Block in some form, although specific powertrain details are a mystery. And while reports believe that the Zora will keep the aluminum space frame currently seen in the C7 in some way, we have reasons to believe the Corvette C8 will introduce a new platform entirely.
As for the body, we could see carbon fiber doors over the current fiberglass ones. and while Car and Driver believes the chassis will still make use of reworked magnetorheological dampers, control arms and composite leaf springs, we also believe a new suspension system will be introduced.
Though, at this moment, the shroud of mystery is still very much covering the 2017 Corvette Zora-ZR1, and only serves to pique our interest even more. After all, the news of a mid-engine American sportscar is something we’ve not had since the Pontiac Fiero. We just want to buy the C8 a drink and ask all about its powertrain options, new architecture, when it thinks it’ll be ready to become America’s only Corvette, etc.
But as they say, good things come to those who wait.