The Corvette, one of the most iconic American sports cars and the jewel in Chevrolet’s crown, has long stuck to a dependable formula – small block V8 upfront, a cloth roof in the middle and huge tyres at the rear to tame those wild Kentucky horses. But recently, GM has been spotted testing a prototype that most definitely has its engine mounted in the middle of the car.
Rumours of a Corvette with a midship powerplant have been going around the automotive press for several years, but now it seems those rumours are becoming reality. Camouflaged cars have been spotted on the roads near Corvette’s home of Bowling Green, Kentucky, as well as at the Nürburgring circuit in Germany, an unforgiving testing ground for many new performance cars. The proportions of these mysterious prototypes coupled with the placement of large air intakes behind the doors has led to speculation that GM has turbocharged the mid-mounted V8 engine, which would be another radical departure from tradition for Corvette.
There has also been speculation from journalists that the prototype supercar may potentially be a flagship Cadillac model instead of a Corvette, but this remains to be seen. As prototypes are currently being tested on public roads, it is likely that the full production car will be unveiled in the next 2 to 3 years.
The likelihood that this mid-engine beast will be sold in the UAE and in the Middle East is very high, thanks to GM’s established network of Chevrolet and Cadillac dealerships in the region and solid sales figures.
Corvette’s latest flagship model, the colossally powerful 2019 ZR1, was unveiled in Dubai earlier in 2018, indicating that the American marque is trying to increase their brand recognition and stake in the UAE’s hugely lucrative performance car market. With Ferrari, Lamborghini and Porsche all holding significant stakes in the Middle Eastern supercar market, GM’s decision to make their next supercar more technologically exciting could be a way to compete with the desirability of the European brand.
If you can’t wait for the mid-engine Corvette to be released, then the 750 horsepower Corvette ZR1 is on sale in the UAE now from a starting price of around AED$620,000.