Continuing the theme of going against tradition with the latest model, not only is it the first mid-engined Corvette drop-top, but it's also the first to use a solid folding roof.
Said to have been engineered “first and foremost” as a drop-top, the new Corvette variant features a two-piece roof powered by six electric motors. It can be activated at vehicle speeds of up to 30mph and retract in 16sec. Chevrolet claims the use of electric motors instead of a hydraulic system improves reliability.
The roof itself, made of composite panels, is said to provide “a quieter cabin, increased security and a cleaner look” than previous soft-tops. It also avoids the usual practicality compromises of a roof of this type, meaning that the car is still able to accommodate two sets of golf clubs in the boot and keeps its front storage compartment.
The roof also features an electric rear window, which Chevrolet claims to have optimised to reduce air recirculation and wind noise. The convertible deploys the same rear spoiler available as part of the coupé’s Z51 Performance Package, with the firm claiming an identical drag coefficient as the coupé.
The 6.2-litre small-blog ‘LT2’ naturally aspirated V8 is unchanged, putting out 495bhp and 470lb ft of torque. No official stats have been provided, but reports from the US claim the performance figures are broadly the same as the coupé's.
Autocar understands that there is a plan to bring the Corvette to the UK in right-hand-drive form next year and it’s likely that the convertible will come, too. It commands a premium of £6000 over the coupé, putting its US price at $67,495 (around £55,000).