Chevrolet may have just announced the 755-hp Corvette ZR1, but no matter how incredible it is to drive, it’s going to have a hard time not getting overshadowed by the upcoming redesigned version.
Based on what we’ve seen and heard, the C8 will almost definitely be the mid-engine Corvette that’s been rumored for all these years. And if the latest report is accurate, not only will the engine sit behind the driver, it will also be ridiculously powerful.
Corvette Forum reader “rsinor” reportedly obtained a copy of a document from IHS Markit, a London-based business analysis company. Unfortunately, the link to the original report is no longer available, but based on what those who read it say, the C8 will get as many as three different engine options.
The Corvette’s current 6.2-liter V-8 is listed, but is more likely destined for the front-engine C7, which is believed to continue production for a few more years. The most interesting tidbit from the document is that 4.2-liter and 5.5-liter V-8 options are also expected—presumably for the upcoming mid-engine variant.
IHS’ production estimates suggest the 6.2-liter V-8 will be the most popular option, which would make sense if the C7 carries on as the “volume” model, followed by the 4.2-liter and finally the 5.5-liter. Corvette Forum also believes the smaller V-8s will likely be twin-turbocharged and of a dual-overhead-cam design.
In terms of horsepower, the 5.5-liter will reportedly make a maximum of 850 hp, with the 4.2-liter cranking out something closer to 650 hp. If so, that would mean the top-of-the-line mid-engine Corvette will make nearly 100 hp more than the already-quick Corvette ZR1, while the mid-tier C8 will make about the same power as a C7 Z06.
Speaking of the C7, it’s believed Chevrolet will keep it in production even after the mid-engine version goes on sale. It would be sold alongside the (presumably more expensive) C8 until 2021. There’s also been talk of a Cadillac version, but Corvette Forum believes that will most likely be a race car, not a production vehicle.
Considering that the C8 is expected to go on sale in 2019, expect to see it revealed sometime soon, perhaps as early as the Detroit auto show next month. But considering how big a deal the mid-engine Corvette is, assume that Chevrolet will keep an extremely tight lid on photos and information until the moment it decides to reveal the car.