The 2015 Chevrolet Corvette enters its second year, and a host of changes come with it: the six-speed automatic is replaced by an eight-speed; the Atlantic convertible and Pacific coupe Design packages are introduced; a Performance Data Recorder is available; various appearance add-ons are now available; and, last but not least, the Z06 coupe and convertible are introduced...
The Corvette is Chevrolet’s flagship sports car, now in its seventh generation. By combining handling, power, reasonable fuel economy, and a world-class interior the Corvette remains a performance bargain, fitting above the capable Camaro in Chevrolet’s lineup.
The 2015 Corvette Stingray enters the second year of the C7, which debuted last year. Joining the lineup is the range-topping Z06, which has two firsts for the model: an optional eight-speed automatic and a convertible*. Power on the standard Stingray coupe and convertible is provided by a 6.2-liter V-8 that makes 455 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque or 460 hp and 465 lb-ft with an available performance exhaust. Pairing the LT1 with the seven-speed manual nets an EPA-estimated 17/29 mpg city/highway; the eight-speed automatic gets 16/29 mpg, improving over the replaced six-speed auto by one-mpg on the highway.
A modified version of the LT1 gets fitted with a supercharger and gets renamed the LT4, which boosts power from the 6.2-liter V-8 to 650 hp and 650 lb-ft of torque. EPA-estimated fuel economy is a “you-didn’t-buy-it-to-save-gas” 13/23 mpg that is nonetheless impressive considering its high-power rivals, with potential for more savings as the LT4 retains the LT1’s cylinder deactivation technology.
The Atlantic convertible and Pacific coupe Design Packages are now available on Z51 equipped cars, which serve to show what the 2015 Corvette Stingray can be if taken to either extreme: Atlantic is the nicely appointed touring car, and the Pacific is the high-performance track edition. The Performance Data Recorder is a system that records and allows owners/drivers to play back lap video with times, speed, audio, brake input, steering input, and throttle. It’s a neat system that also allows you to record the valet who parks it, or anyone who drives it while you’re away.
The 2015 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray has not been crash tested by the NHTSA or the IIHS.
What We Think
The eight-speed automatic in the Corvette is quite good, and the near instantaneous shifts are something we typically associate with Porsches. On the track, the shift logic is also excellent, but we noted some hesitation as the computers and sensors calculated how much power to put down.
Your interaction with the C7 is as straightforward as a handshake. The ergonomics feel right; the switchgear is clear and functional; you can see out of the cabin; and the seats hold you comfortably in place … The materials look and feel good, and the interfaces manage to be modern yet not gimmicky, a concept that more and more carmakers are finding elusive these days.
From what we’ve experienced with the 2014 Corvette, and the latest revision of the automatic, which added two gears, we can’t wait to drive the ZO6 in all of its forms.
- Eight-speed automatic
- 650-hp Z06
- High-quality interior
You Won’t Like
- Controversial exterior styling
- Getting in and out of the low cabin
- Porsche 911
- BMW M4
- Ford Mustang GT500
- Dodge Viper SRT
- Nissan GT-RM