GM Press Release: March 6, 1997: 1997 Corvette: Extraordinary Devotion - Chevrolet’s Unique Corvette Engenders Automotive Passion
General Motors Media Press Release
FOR RELEASE: March 6, 1997
CONTACT: Chevrolet Communications
Phone: (800) CHEVY-MI or: (810) 492-8841
Fax: (810) 492-8853
Chevrolet’s Unique Corvette Engenders Automotive Passion
WARREN, Mich. - To some it’s an American icon, a legend, a rolling technological testbed, a symbol of achievement, Chevrolet’s flagship. To others, it’s simply their `Vette.
But to many, this Friday (March 7) is an automotive high holy day because that’s the day Chevrolet will unveil the all-new, fifth-generation Corvette at some 400 select dealerships across the country.
Chevrolet dealers, suppliers and advertising agencies are going to unusual lengths for this unusual car. One dealer is preparing a Corvette "shrine," exhibiting the previous four Corvette generations with the 1997 fifth generation. A few dealers expect to sell their yearly Corvette allotment in a single day. Others are hiring local celebrities and catering special showings of the new `Vette.
One aftermarket supplier is stamping the new Corvette logo on "just about anything," including chrome-plated valve stem caps for tires and sets of crystal glasses and stemware. Chevrolet’s ad agency -- Campbell-Ewald -- even hired the director of The Fugitive and Under Siege to direct Chevy’s new Corvette TV commercial.
What inspires such devotion? That’s hard to describe. John Middlebrook, Chevrolet’s General Manager, has said that "Corvette is much more than just a car. It’s a love affair. Words alone fail to convey the passion it inspires."
And so the faithful will come to Chevrolet dealerships this Friday. They’ll come to see what Chevrolet has always offered as an American sports car. They’ll come to talk with other devotees about the Corvette things that matter most -- ride and handling, performance, comfort, style and overall refinement.
They’ll talk about improvements such as the all-new 345- horsepower, all-aluminum V8 engine; the rear-mounted transmission; easier passenger entry and exit; increased cargo space for two sets of golf clubs; the 34-percent parts decrease; more rigid structure and the lowest coefficient of drag in the world for a high-end sports car.
Some will even talk price. The 1997 Corvette’s Manufacturers’ Suggested Retail Price is $38,060 (including destination) -- only $270 more than its 1996 predecessor, and an impressive value that adds more than $1,000 worth of premium standard equipment for 1997. The price will help maintain Corvette’s reputation as the best-selling sports car in the world since its introduction 44 years ago.
But most Corvette aficionados care less about price than they care about the experience -- the mystical, indescribable essence of any Corvette.