Corvette E-Ray Prototypes Are Out There: What We Know So Far
Motorbiscuit has been covering the E-Ray Corvette for over a year. This week, news leaked that gives us a little more info about how it will be configured and when it will be released. When it comes to the Corvette, every little tidbit-even a hybrid Corvette offshoot is newsworthy.
We know the E-Ray will be all-wheel-drive and feature unique cues outside
With the Z06 development in the bag, Corvette engineers are ready to take on the E-Ray Corvette for its final stretch. It will be all-wheel-drive, and the first hybrid Corvette ever. There will be distinguishing characteristics outside that will distinguish it from non-hybrid models.
First, the wider body used for the Z06 will be used for the E-Ray as well. The fascia will look just like all of the C8 Corvettes so far. But at the rear, a lack of exhaust poking through the body will separate it. And it will ride on different wheels.
What it won’t swipe from the Z06 is its wild wing, and Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 R tires. It will retain the Stingray’s Michelin Pilot Sport All-Season 4 or Pilot Sport 4S tires instead. That’s because Chevy sees the E-Ray shooting for a different market.
The E-Ray will feature an “e-booster” front end
Batteries will be positioned in the hollow center spine of the Stingray’s chassis. But the front end will feature an electronic front suspension. Musclecarsandtrucks say it is called an “e-booster.” What will it do? It allows for zero-emissions driving at slower speeds in the 30-35-mph range.
The Z06 could be considered on the nasty side of raw. With a flat-plane crank and being naturally aspirated, it is the ultimate manifestation of the classic Corvette. And the last of its breed. It may even be more at home on track day than in the morning commute.
Chevy sees the E-Ray as more of a grand touring machine
The E-Ray, on the other hand, looks to be a more refined version of the C8. Like a grand touring car. It should launch off the line like no other Vette, whereas stabbing the trigger on the Z06 will fry your tires forever.
The E-Ray will also share the Stingray’s V8 engine. At 6.2-liters and 495 hp, adding the E-Ray also adds more power. With its electric motors, it ups the ponies to 650 hp. So it is one big notch above the pedestrian Stingray.
Is there anything like it in the market now? Yes, the Acura NSX. The last of this great marque will be the Type S, but it will cost you. How does $171,500 grab you? Yeah, we think so too. We expect the E-Ray to be many thousands below the price of an NSX.
The E-Ray will be the only hybrid sports car on the market
But the NSX will be dead when the E-Ray hits Chevy dealerships. So, this hybrid Corvette will be the only one in this class. Not even Porsche will have anything like it. At least for a while. And though the E-Ray will be a hybrid like a Prius, it will still keep the Tremec 8-speed automatic transmission.
And what might be the real news is that E-Ray Corvettes are popping up in disguised prototype form in the wild. Factoring forward, it could be launched as a 70th-anniversary special edition. That means it could be here in 2023.