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The Future Of The Name Plate Appears In A Flux

2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 Corvette C8 Stingray E-Ray Z06 Zora ZR1 Grand Sport

Ever since the all-new C8 Corvette Stingray was revealed, there’s been a steady stream of murmurs, leaks, and spy shots of the next iteration of the mid-engined American sports car. What we can say with certainty is that the next variant of the C8 is going to be the mighty Z06. Following that, traditionally, has been the Grand Sport model. This trim level has its origins as a bootleg race car that Zora Arkus Duntov snuck through the back door without official approval in the 1960’s. It’s then appeared on the C4, C6, and C7 generations. The latter two were comprised of the Z06 body at the time, but with more standard power. Unfortunately, a C8 Corvette Grand Sport may not be coming.

Here’s what we know. The “E-Ray” is the front runner name for the widebody C8 Corvette that will follow the Z06 for the 2023 model year. This variant will in fact have all-wheel-drive, and will incorporate electric motors in place of the current frunk to send power to the front wheels. In the “spine” of the E-Ray will be a cluster of the GM Ultium battery packs. In the engine bay will be the 6.2L LT2 V8 engine currently found in the C8 Stingray. If early reports are proven accurate, the C8 Corvette E-Ray will produce around 600 horsepower and 500 lb-ft of torque, although we’re unable to fully confirm these numbers as of now. It will also feature the widebody design of the 2022 Corvette Z06.

The entry-level engine of the Stingray and the widened shape of the high-shelf Z06 that the E-Ray would feature would indeed prove to be the optimal formula for a C8 Corvette Grand Sport. It could still happen, but all signs point to this vehicle wearing the E-Ray badge. There’s otherwise not enough breathing room between what the E-Ray will be and what is normally expected of the Corvette Grand Sport. Although, to us, the Grand Sport has more name recognition, and nobody is saying it can’t/shouldn’t be a hybrid, either. According to our network of sources, there are currently no “Grand Sport” test mules in development, but there are some E-Rays.

Corvette C8.R

Maybe Chevrolet will go back to roots with the Grand Sport name, and put together a track-only package as an homage to the original race cars. But we’re just thinking out loud in this regard.

Recently, some internet confusion emerged about whether or not the C8 Corvette E-Ray was recently spotted testing in the Rockies. Our sources tell us that no hybrid Corvettes were out testing in the mountains out west, where several sleuth witnesses and professional spy photographers captured the Z06 shaking itself down out on public roads. Some folks were confused by the images of a C8 Corvette Z06 testing with a standard exhaust system, leading them to think that the upcoming Corvette E-Ray (so-called) joined the C8 Z06 on its mountain adventure.

The 2022 Corvette Z06 will have a center-mounted exhaust, incredible tires, carbon fiber wheels, and aggressive, unique aerodynamics. The centerpiece of all of it will be GM’s new LT6 V8 engine; a dual overhead cam (DOHC) flat plane crank V8 engine that will spin to nearly 9,000 RPM, and will not feature forced induction.

C8 Corvette

Written by Manoli Katakis

Muscle Cars & Trucks was founded by Manoli Katakis - an automotive media veteran that has been covering the latest car news since 2009. His journalism has uncovered dozens of major product changes, updates, plans, and cancellations long before automakers were ready to make things official.

Some highlights over the years of his reporting include the uncovering of the Zora trademark before anybody else reported on the coming of a mid-engine Corvette, as well as the dead-accurate reporting of the coming of the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2, two years before it hit the market, and even before the debut of the concept vehicle. This type of reporting has immediately continued here, with reports of the original seventh-generation Camaro plans being shelved, as well as what's in store for the Chevrolet Silverado.

Some of his work can be found on massive automotive media outlets, such as Motor1. He also has been a guest on the 910AM Radio Station with Detroit News auto critic Henry Payne, as well as the enthusiast-oriented Camaro Show podcast.

Over the years, Manoli has interviewed various automotive industry titans, leaders, and people that make things happen otherwise. These include figureheads such as GM CEO Mary Barra, GM President Mark Reuss, automotive aftermarket icon Ken Lingenfelter, Dodge firebrand Tim Kuniskis, along with various chief engineers of vehicles such as the Ford F-150 & Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro & Corvette, and many more.

At MC&T, Manoli is taking his journalism expertise, deeply planted sources, driving abilities, and automotive industry knowledge to new levels, covering more vehicles and brands than ever before. This is the place where you will continue to read groundbreaking stories about American performance vehicles, pickup trucks, and sport utility vehicles. Here is where you’ll also read insights and quotes from various automotive subject matter experts on the latest relevant products, as well as some of the latest official news from their manufacturers.

Fun facts: he also once beat Corvette Racing driver Tommy Milner in an autocross with a Chevrolet Bolt EV. The biggest vehicle he’s ever driven is a John Deere mining truck. Besides a go-kart, the smallest vehicle he’s driven has been a Hyundai i10. He’s also spent time in the cockpit of various American performance vehicle icons, including the fifth-generation Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, Dodge Challenger Demon, and Ford Mustang GT350R. He has reviewed dozens of trucks, SUVs, and performance vehicles over the years.

One of his favorite new vehicles on the market today happens to be the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Bison. He is also a card carrying member of the Sports Car Club of America, and regularly participates in Detroit Region autocross events.

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