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Mid-Engine C8 Corvette Spied Benchmarking Against Porsche 911 Turbo S

As you already know, the Corvette plant in Kentucky no longer offers guided tours because it’s in the middle of retooling in preparation for the C7 ZR1 and the C8 “ZERV,” which will up the ante with supercar credentials. General Motors has high hopes for the next-generation model, which has been spied in Michigan duking it out with a manufacturer-plated Porsche 911 Turbo S.
2019 Chevrolet Corvette (C8) mid-engine supercar 29 photos
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The prototype of the C8 Corvette the automotive media refers to as “ZERV” is fully camouflaged. But on closer inspection, parts of the vehicle such as the front fascia, headlights, profile, roof, and side mirrors appear to be ready for production. Road & Track’s spy photographers caught not one, not two, but three C8 prototypes followed by an immaculate-looking 911 Turbo S (991.2).

As the cited publication notes, the manufacturer plate on the Porsche is the work of Chevrolet, more so if you take into consideration that the golden bowtie has a habit of buying 911s for benchmarking against the Corvette. When the C7 was in development, for example, Chevy purchased a Carrera S.

In stark comparison to the centrally-positioned quad exhaust pipes of the C7, the mid-engine prototypes feature two tailpipes at each end of the rear bumper. In comparison to the square-ish pipes of the 911 Turbo S, the C8 Corvette “ZERV” features round tips as one might find on the Lamborghini Huracan. In terms of stopping power, the test vehicles are fitted with steel rotors instead of performance-oriented carbon ceramic brake discs.

The carparazzi managed to film one of the C8 prototypes under acceleration, and in spite of the wind noise, it’s easy to hear the burble of an all-American V8. There’s still some debate as to what sort of engine hides under the hood, with most enthusiasts suggesting it’s the LT5. But the LT5, as you might have read in an older story on autoevolution, is an angrier LT4 made for the ZR1.

For what it’s worth, a supercharged V8 based on the small-block LT1 isn’t exactly the way to go against the likes of the 911 Turbo S, as well as full-on exotica such as the Ferrari 488 GTB. A more likely culprit is the 4.2-liter twin-turbo V8 previewed by the Cadillac Escala Concept, paired to an automatic transmission. On the subject of cogs, there’s still debate if the C8 will use the 10-speeder co-developed with Ford or the Tremec TR-9007 DCT.

 
 
 
 
 

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