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By Dennis Romero
The supercar world is dominated by manufacturers across the pond – Ferrari, Lamborghini, McLaren. The Chevrolet Corvette has always been a challenging challenge with an Achilles heel that prevents world domination: The front engine is in the wrong place.
With the announcement last night, as the next generation of Corvette will be revealed July 18, General Barors, CEO Mary Barra, but confirmed that America's longest running sports car is about to get a much-needed upgrade – mid-engine placement that will put it in the same league like the European rockets. 19659009] (Some fans of the Ford Mustang, first sold in 1964, say it's the longest running American sports car because Corvette, first available to buyers in 1953, skipped the 1983 model year to ease the development of a new generation. Calling Mustang
Barra, who spoke Friday at a New York event to honor families of first respondents killed in 9/11, did not say that the engine would be placed behind the driver, but she appeared with ac Amouflagd "Eighth generation Corvette that has the short nose and long back of a typical mid-engine vehicle."
"Not confirmed or commented on the engine, even if it is highly speculated," said Chevrolet spokeswoman Kelly Cusinato.
location, considered ideal for racing, because it results in better handling, is a prior conclusion among Corvette avicionados, many of which are lumpy that the next corvette instead of being a motor runner in front of the engine, true apparently will be more of a global track star.
"I think this mid-engine will enjoy new Corvette enthusiasts for the family," said Katie Ellison, editor of America's Sports Car Magazine and marketing and communications director at the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky. where Corvette is built.
She noted that it was long the dream of the latest godfather of Corvette, Zora-Arkus Duntov, to put the engine in the middle. On Saturday, Corvetteblogger.com noted that the camouflaged corvette revealed by CEO Barra contains a picture of Duntov.
Some automatic reviewers believe that the highest performance version of today's Corvette has more horsepower (755) than the engine's layout can handle. Moreover, the European layout of the vehicle appeals to younger buyers at a time when Corvette's stereotypical customer spends most of his time in a recliner.
"We already see the age group down," Ellison said.
One question among Corvette fans is whether GM can maintain it as a performance negotiation. Prices today start at $ 55,000 and come in at the low $ 100,000 compared to about $ 200,000 and up for European competition. Mid-engine development is likely to add thousands to the sticker.
"It's the most affordable sports car out there," Ellison said. "I'm sure it'll be a bit more expensive, but Chevrolet won't lose its core customers."