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PERFORMANCE | 10 out of 10
“The Grand Sport reminds us of a Z06 missing about 70 horsepower”
Exotic-car performance for real-world money
base Corvettes are plenty quick by any measure
For 2010, the Chevrolet Corvette offers something new for performance fans: Launch Control. Motor Trend raves that it is “incredibly easy to use” and ideal for “anyone who occasionally faces a situation when it just won't do to flub the launch.” Jalopnik notes that GM assures using the Launch Control will “never void the warranty” and “works pretty well too.”
The 2010 Chevrolet Corvette has very high power ratings for the price. Edmunds reviewers say even the base Chevrolet Corvette Coupe and Convertible "feature a 6.2-liter V-8 that makes an impressive 430 horsepower and 424 pound-feet of torque," while "the optional dual-mode exhaust adds another 6 horsepower and 4 pound-feet." Moving up the ladder to the sportier Chevrolet Corvette Z06, Cars.com reports that an "LS7 V-8 engine that generates 505 horsepower at 6,300 rpm and 470 pounds-feet of torque at 4,800 rpm" rests under the hood. Also available once again is the 2010 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1, which Edmunds says boasts "an otherworldly 638 horsepower and 604 pound-feet of torque" courtesy of its 6.2-liter supercharged V-8 engine. Reviews read by TheCarConnection.com show that all the available engines are incredibly potent, and ConsumerGuide rates even the base Chevrolet Corvette a 10 out of 10 for acceleration. ConsumerGuide also declares that those "base Corvettes are plenty quick by any measure, with strong power from a stop and during highway passing and merging." Kelley Blue Book remarks that the base "6.2-liter V-8 delivers abundant power throughout its speed range," and impressions of the Z06 and ZR1’s engines are even better. Edmunds reports that while the "base Coupe [goes] from zero to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds," a Chevrolet Corvette "Z06 will knock that down to 3.9 seconds." ConsumerGuide reviewers are stunned to find that the 2010 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 "will do 0-60 in a scorching 3.4 seconds," which ranks it among the quickest cars in the world.
Not only is the big, supercharged engine in the ZR1 powerful, but it’s a smooth operator as well. Jalopnik gushes that "it feels like something that belongs in a big German luxury car," since "it makes driving effortless."
The 2010 Chevrolet Corvette lineup features two different transmission options, both updated for 2010. While manual models get the new Launch Control system, customers picking the self-shifter get a revised six-speed automatic paddle shift control that includes a “push and hold” feature to make returning to automatic mode simpler. Edmunds reviewers state that "all 2010 Chevrolet Corvettes have a six-speed manual gearbox as standard, while a six-speed paddle-shifted automatic is a no-cost option for the base Coupe and Convertible." Reviews of the manual transmission of both transmissions are glowing, with Jalopnik claiming that "a twin-disc clutch leads to easy pedal throw" on manual-transmission versions, "while a precise gate makes finding gears simple." Sadly, the same can't be said for the automatic. ConsumerGuide warns that “the automatic shifts smoothly, but downshifts often require a deep stab of the throttle." However, ConsumerGuide points out that "manual shifting via the steering-wheel paddles helps."
Despite the abundant power that the 2010 Chevrolet Corvette delivers, fuel economy is surprisingly high. The EPA estimates that base Chevrolet Corvettes will get 16 mpg city and 26 mpg highway with the manual transmission, while the automatic drops each of those numbers by 1 mpg. The Chevrolet Corvette Z06 also gets 15 mpg city and 24 mpg on the highway, while the 2010 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 boasts 14 mpg in the city and 20 mpg on the highway. ConsumerGuide finds that "these figures are impressive given Corvette’s power."
Chevrolet Corvettes have always been able to go fast in a straight line, but the latest generation is also a very capable handler. Motor Trend reports that "three suspension choices allow drivers to choose the setup that best suits their driving style," while "the optional Magnetic Selective Ride Control suspension features magnetic rheological shock absorbers able to detect road surfaces and adjust the damping rates to those surfaces almost instantly for optimal ride control." The result, says Edmunds, is that "on a deserted twisty road, the driver will likely run out of talent before the Corvette runs out of capability." Regarding the 2010 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1, Jalopnik claims that "despite all the headline numbers, this car isn’t about power, it’s about handling." The power available in the 2010 Chevrolet Corvette can get drivers into trouble in a hurry if there’s no easy way to harness it, though fortunately Edmunds reviewers claim "the brakes are strong and fade-free and there’s massive grip from the tires."
Few other cars on the planet offer the daily drivability and absolute performance of the 2010 Chevrolet Corvette.