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C8 Corvette Crowned 2020 North American Car of the Year

It’s been more than half a century since Zora Arkus-Duntov made a business case for the mid-engined Corvette. General Motors made a small step in this direction in the 1980s with the Pontiac Fiero, a sports car that slowly but steadily became a favorite of the replicar scene.
C8 Corvette 20 photos
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The beancounters and higher-ups revisited Zora’s concept when they started working on the eighth generation of the ‘Vette, and as pretty much all of you are aware, the first test mules were Frankenmobiles with the body shell from an Australian ute. The small-block V8 engine wasn’t connected to the eight-speed DCT in the production model, but to a PDK sourced from Porsche because Tremec hadn’t yet finished its dual-clutcher.

When Chevrolet took the veils off the C8, everyone was left speechless by the specs of the Stingray with the Z51 performance package. But more importantly, few people could believe the $59,995 sticker price (including destination charge) for the entry-level version of the C8.

Subsequent reviews and test drives have proven the eighth generation is superior to the C7 in pretty much every area, but nevertheless, a handful of people still cry over the lack of a manual option. Even if the purists are upset about these changes, the C8 in Stingray flavor has won the North American Car of the Year award “based on segment leadership, innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction, and value for the dollar.”

The 2020 NACOTY awards also include the Kia Telluride for SUVs and Jeep Gladiator for trucks, edging ahead of the Palisade and Aviator as well as the Ranger and Ram HD. In the Car of the Year category, the ‘Vette was pitted against the all-new Hyundai Sonata and Toyota’s redesigned Supra with underpinnings from the BMW Z4 roadster.

“A mid-engine Corvette was a huge risk for Chevy’s muscle-car icon. They nailed it,” said Henry Payne, an automotive writer for The Detroit News. “Stunning styling, interior, and performance for one-third of the cost of comparable European exotics.”

press release
 
 
 
 
 

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