The Corvette’s Junk in the Trunk
The 2022 Chevrolet Corvette 182.3 inches long. It’s 7.9 inches longer than the Audi R8, which squeezes the V-10 into its engine bay. It is 3.8 inches longer than the Acura NSX and 2.6 inches longer than the Ferrari 296 GTB. And much of that lavish length is concentrated in the rear of the cabin. The C8 is all about forward-cabin styling, and from a three-quarter view, front or rear, it can look like the front third of the car is being swallowed up by a billion-dollar version. its own 8/7 ratio. Or as if it were in a telescope process, like Rinspeed Press. The Corvette looks great in profile and top dead, but it’s not as neat visually, as it could be if it hadn’t had the 20-inch gap separating the engine bay from the rear bumper. There’s just no disguise for Corvette’s big trunk.
But the small extension behind the engine compartment is what transforms the C8 from a gaudy toy into a real everyday car. When you start seeing Corvettes with 150,000 miles, it’s not because they have great fuel economy or have Barcalounger seats. That would be because of the crate. It’s easy to go on a 600-mile trip when you don’t have to think about what to pack. And removing a practical obstacle to road trips means more miles, which should be the ultimate goal for a car that treats driving as hedonism rather than a chore. . And for this great flexibility, we can thank… the roof.
Early in the planning of the C8, Chevy’s focus teams confirmed that switching to a mid-engine layout would not alter customer expectations that all Vette models would be convertibles. – as in coupes with a removable hood. And if the roof comes off, you need a place to put it in the car. As a result, the C8’s rear trunk isn’t designed around your luggage or golf club (though it will hold two) or the bags of mulch you can throw in for versatility at the Home Depot. It’s designed to accommodate the roof, and this thing isn’t a T-top. That panel is big. And so the C8’s total cargo capacity is 13 cubic feet, which is equivalent to one rooftop cargo bag you might see on an SUV.
As a result, when I rode the 2022 Corvette on an overnight trip to the mountains of North Carolina, I had plenty of room for the bulk of winter required—not having to cram every cabin airbag with a jacket. Roll up and sock individually, without uncomfortably sliding the seat forward to create a few cubic centimeters of spare cargo, like I did on an R8. Just get in and out, both trunks full to the rim but untidy inside.
And that capacity drives what else is a great year-round touring car, a big traveller in a rat suit. When I ride in a well-camouflaged vehicle pre-production C8 at GM’s Milford Proving Grounds in 2019, chief engineer Tadge Juechter said, “It has 911 performance along with the best attributes of the Boxster and Cayman. And some Lexus innovations are included, which might surprise everyone. ” While the Corvette can perform brutal launch-control clutch jerks and reach 60 mph in 2.8 seconds, it can also be mellow on the highway — active exhaust muting, magnetic cruise control, smooth gear-to-wheel drive. With winter tires, you can pass the snow-covered mountain road without any difficulty. And the optional front lift system helps the C8 traverse ramps or speed bumps without wear. The Corvette is no ordinary car, but it can pretend to be one.
Not everyone is satisfied with the Corvette’s compromise between aesthetics and utility. I have a friend who bought two Z06s before, C6 and C7, but don’t know if he will come back to buy a third. “The new Corvette looks weird in some ways,” he said. “The last one looks much better to me.” And I know what he means, but he’s not one to take advantage of the Corvette’s capacity (the C7 has even more cargo space). When I asked him how many kilometers he had driven in his C7 Z06, now 4 years old, he replied: “3000.” I went a long way to hitting that number in a weekend with the C8.
When I visited Milford, Juechter said, “There are a million decisions about the path to creating a new car.” Going with the removable roof — and therefore the large trunk — is one of them. And they did it right.
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