This First-Ever Chevy Corvette C8 Is Coming to Japan Before Anywhere Else

There are few sports cars that have the name recognition of the Chevy Corvette, and it remains a popular brand around the world. In fact, the first-ever production Corvette C8 was bought for millions of dollars, and that shows just how beloved the Corvette is. Indeed, the Chevrolet Corvette C8 is popular abroad too, but surprisingly, Japan will get the first right-hand-drive Corvette C8 before anywhere else.

The Chevy Corvette C8 is a powerhouse

Mark Reuss, president of General Motors Co. (GM), speaks during an unveiling event for the GM red 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray sports car in Tustin, California, U.S.
The Chevy Corvette C8 | Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images

With a starting price tag of about $60,000, the Chevy Corvette C8 provides a lot of power at a somewhat affordable price tag. That price tag equips the Corvette C8 with a 6.2-liter V8 engine that gets about 490 hp. This powerful engine allows the Corvette C8 to accelerate from 0 to 60 MPH in about 2.8 seconds, which is very good for a sports car.

But of course, Chevy has options. As expected, these options will improve the power and performance of the Corvette C8, but at the cost of being very expensive. These options will largely upgrade the powertrain, usually with more powerful V8s. For example, Chevy offers a twin-turbocharged V8 option, and it’ll get over 800 hp. This option, however, will cost about $120,000.

There are many more options as well as rumored options, but one highly-anticipated option that isn’t a rumor is the model with right-hand drive. Obviously, for Americans, their model will be left-hand drive, but for Corvette fans living in countries that drive on the other side of the road, this car is the one to look out for. 

The right-hand drive Chevy Corvette C8 debuts in Japan

Like MotorTrend wrote, back in 2019, Chevrolet made it clear that on top of everything else, it’ll be producing the Chevy Corvette C8 with right-hand drive. This was the first time, according to MotorTrend, that a Corvette was being made in a factory with a right-hand drive variant. While there are many countries that use cars with right-hand drive, Chevy will be making and selling this version of the Corvette C8 for Australia, Japan, and the United Kingdom.

While it took a while for Chevy to finally make these cars, MotorTrend wrote that Japan will be the first of those right-hand drive markets to get this version of the vehicle. This may have been a surprise to some, as they may have expected Chevy to introduce this version of the sports car to the U.K. first. 

Regardless, Japanese fans of the Corvette will be the first to get their hands on the right-hand-drive model. However, as MotorTrend talked about, not that many fans will be able to do that.

The limited production

Obviously, since the Chevy Corvette C8 is a luxury sports car with a starting price tag of about $60,000, it wasn’t going to be accessible to everyone. However, for one reason or another, Chevy only allocated about 300 units for Japan, according to MotorTrend. On top of that, when Chevy started selling the Corvette C8 in Japan, those 300 units were sold out immediately.

Based on that fact, it seems like Japanese Corvette fans are eager and willing to buy this model, and Chevy simply hasn’t built enough for them. Furthermore, the production and selling of the right-hand drive models is also bad news for aftermarket conversion companies that convert left-hand drive cars into right-hand drive cars, but they may come out unscathed.

Since Chevy’s 300 unit allocation sold out so fast in Japan, Japanese Corvette fans may just buy a left-hand drive Corvette and convert it into a right-hand drive version. As for the other right-hand-drive markets, since Japan only started receiving the right-hand drive Corvette C8 recently, it won’t be long until Australia and the U.K. get theirs.

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