C8 Corvette stands out as the oddball in its family portrait, which is to be expected from the first mid-engine model ever. The styling looks far more exotic than its predecessor but it still distinctly looks like a Vette with details like the Camaro-inspired taillights.
The 2020 Chevy Corvette gets a 6.2-liter LT2 naturally aspirated V8 engine that makes 495 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque with the optional exhaust. Without the sport exhaust it makes 490 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque. All C8s will have a dry-sump oil system, and the internals remain largely the same as the LT1. Redline stays at 6,600 rpm for this engine, too. The motor is visible through a 3.2-millimeter glass pane, and it’s a real gem to look at. An eight-speed dual-clutch Tremec transmission will be swapping the cogs, and there is no manual option. Chevy isn’t giving an exact acceleration time right now, but it says the 0-60 mph run will be under 3 seconds.
The inside view of the C8 leaked prior to the reveal, but we have a better look now. The new mid-engine layout gives the Corvette a completely fresh greenhouse with a pair of digital displays for the instrument cluster and infotainment system. The wraparound arrangement looks quite cozy and driver-centric, with a beefy center console separating the driver from the passenger. And something of a surprise in this age of clean lines – fans of buttons will love the veritable drag strip of manual controls nestled in the C8’s center spine. Some might find the buttons – which operate the Corvette’s climate functions for the dash and seats – to be unsightly. However, there is something to be said for simply pressing a switch as opposed to navigating a display.
Power is sent to the rear wheels via an 8-speed Tremec dual-clutch automatic, which can be controlled manually via steering-wheel-mounted paddles. Unlike most dual-clutch automatic transmissions the driver can use the paddle shifters to de-clutch the transmission so owners can rev the engine without putting the gearbox in neutral. The DCT is set up with a low first gear for torque off the line while gears two through six feature closer ratios to keep the engine on boil. Both seventh and eighth gears are tall to eke out every mpg, one of the Corvette’s newest tricks that debuted on the current version.
There are six drive modes that modify the Corvette’s drive systems: Weather, Tour, Sport, Track, MyMode, and Z mode. The first four are familiar to anyone that’s been in a Corvette, but MyMode allows drivers to set particular settings, while Z mode allows drivers to take MyMode and tweak the engine and transmission.