GM Media Press Release
Source: GM Communications of Europe.
For Release: March 2004
Corvette C6 Coupe: the sixth generation of an American legend
New standard of performance car excellence makes European debut in Geneva
GENEVA - The brand new Corvette C6 Coupe, the sixth generation of the ultimate American sportscar, makes its European debut in Geneva. The Corvette C6 delivers more power, passion and precision to reach a new standard of performance car excellence. The new Corvette is proving once again that it can turn dreams into reality.
The exterior of the sixth generation Corvette combines performance technology with expressive style. From the very beginning engineers envisioned that that next Corvette would take a logical step up in performance. That meant a more powerful car that was also more agile, more "placeable" and "tossable" on the race track, while also more comfortable in daily driving and at home in any environment. Distilling the dimensions of 2005 Corvette into a smaller package would emphasize its potency and the musculature that flexed beneath its tauter surfaces.
An overall length of 4435 mm and an overall width of 1844 mm were established as the target dimensions. Even though 2005 Corvette is now 130 mm shorter and 28 mm narrower than C5, efficient packaging and a wheelbase that is 28 mm inches longer allow 2005 Corvette to maintain current levels of interior room and class-leading cargo space.
Reducing two areas of the Corvette C6 front-end architecture enabled the overall shortening of the car: The front sections of the hydroformed rails were shortened by 60 mm and the fore/aft dimension of the front bumper beam was shortened by 16 mm. At the rear, the length was reduced by more effective positioning of energy-absorbing foam and by shortening the rear fascia and bumper structure. Corvette C6's overall dimensions are similar to those of the Porsche 911, another respected performer on the road and track.
Classic 'egg crate' grille
The front fenders are both more rounded and more sharply defined. They are higher by 10 mm and also feature a beltline crease. Combined with the shortened front overhang, the fenders contribute to a more taut, purposeful front-end design. The appearance of the rear end was kept bold, simple, and emphasizes the shortened rear overhang. Four round taillamps continue as a Corvette rear styling trademark, a tradition that dates back to 1961. Four circular exhaust tips are integrated into the rear diffuser and pick up the circular theme established by the four round taillamps.
The instrument panel and door trim areas make extensive use of cast skin, which retains the look and feel of genuine leather with excellent softness, low gloss and low glare that conveys an overall premium appearance and quality. Anodized aluminium accents the interior in key functional areas, such as the manual shift knob and door release buttons. This material includes a screen-printed appliqué that minimizes sun glare, and is resistant to temperature changes and fingerprints.
Corvette utilizes a two-layer composite seat frame that is supported by an aluminium base, giving the seats outstanding structural support, especially in the stiffness of the seat backs themselves. Whether the owner chooses the standard seats or the optional sport versions, they will experience an uncompromising seat that offers comfort for long-distance driving as well as increased lateral support for performance driving.
A menu-selectable head-up display is projected onto the windshield in front of the driver with vehicle speed and other information. The display is focused so that it aligns with the driver's line of sight on the road ahead, allowing the driver to focus on driving while still being able to monitor vehicle speed and other critical vehicle information. There are two settings: Street and Track; and each setting is preprogrammed to display information that is relevant for each respective - and very different - situation.
Most standard horsepower ever
The LS2 incorporates several significant changes that help improve performance, reliability and serviceability. An all-new aluminium block casting incorporates provisions for external knock sensors and revised oil galleries; external sensors improve serviceability. The cylinder bore diameter increased to 101.6 mm, increasing displacement from 5.7 to 6.0 liters and the camshaft lift increased to take advantage of increased cylinder head flow, while the engine's compression ratio is raised to 10.9:1 and the "redline" raised to 6500 rpm.
The (optional) automatic transmission in the Corvette is the new Hydra-Matic 4L65-E four-speed. An upgraded version of the C5's 4L60-E, the "L65" is strengthened and revised to accommodate the LS2's 295 Nm of torque. The 4L65-E uses a highly advanced electronic controller that has been specifically calibrated for Performance Algorithm Shifting. This technology automatically selects the optimal gear for a given driving condition, making it a willing accomplice for performance driving and hard cornering. The 4L65-E transmission shifts at higher rpm, compared to the C5's 4L60-E, to take advantage of the LS2's higher horsepower and rev range.
Enhanced chassis and suspension
The short-long arm and transverse leaf spring independent suspension configuration remains, but none of the suspension components have been carried over from C5. Improvements in ride and handling include greater lateral acceleration, more body control, less noise transmitted from the road, and better traction and stability in corners. The specific tuning changes in the chassis and suspension include suspension and steering geometry optimized for better handling and ride, advanced compounds in the tires, new directional control arm bushings, increased caster angle and greater suspension ride travel.
Three standard dynamic chassis control systems - anti-lock braking, traction control, and Active Handling - operate in concert to provide a strong, but unobtrusive safety net for spirited driving. The anti-lock braking system is tied into the Active Handling stability system and shares sensors for steering angle, wheel speed, and acceleration and deceleration in all directions. Active Handling stability control influences the attitude of the car by applying braking to individual wheels, but in keeping with Corvette's performance heritage, and unlike more intrusive systems of some competitors, the Corvette team developed a calibration philosophy based on how Corvette drivers actually drive their cars, a system which works with the drivers in their spirited driving, rather than against them.
The Corvette C6 Coupe will be available in Europe in October of this year; sales prices have not been disclosed yet.