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Top End Performance Has Been Skimmed For Smoother Daily Driving Abilities

C8 Corvette Nurburgring Time
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Muscle Cars & Trucks takes pride in its accuracy, and when it comes to C8 Corvette coverage, you’re hard pressed to find more exclusive stories on key product details anywhere else. So far, we were the first to report on the C8’s ECU cybersecurity that will likely leave performance tuners out in the cold, that the upcoming C8 Corvette Z06 won’t have turbos, and we thoroughly dissected why an early dyno run with the C8 was incorrect, only later to be proven right. More importantly, as early as December 2019, MC&T was the first to report on the C8 Corvette Nürburgring time.

Our ‘Ring time is legit, yet Chevrolet confirmed a slower, “unofficial time” in February. The brand publicly claimed that the 2020 Corvette Stingray danced around the New Burger King Ring in a 7:29.9 around the near 13-mile race track. That’s just 1.6 seconds off the 7:28.30 that we first reported. We nevertheless stand by our time, and we have also come to learn why Chevrolet went with a marginally slower number than what we originally reported.

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It’s because the 2020 Corvette Stingray was testing on the ‘Ring with different calibrations at the time. And between then and now, the C8’s powerful software has been adjusted for improved NVH, smoother slow speed/city driving, with the tradeoff being fractions of performance skimmed from the top. It’s understood that GM targeted a more conservative calibration that would deliver a smoother overall driving experience, versus using tricks such as boosted transmission shifts. In fact, the new Corvette has seen several re-calibrations since its official reveal and early access to longstanding automotive magazines.

Don’t just take our word for it. Road & Track has already detailed how the C8’s Tremec eight-speed dual clutch transmission was going to get updated before it reached customers, and that was published back in November of 2019. And just what does it mean for those that put their hard earned money into ordering one? Not much, really. When asked for comment, Chevrolet otherwise stands by the performance numbers, and that customers will see the a 2.9 second 0-60, as advertised.

2020 Corvette Stingray deliveries began last week, and aftermarket companies have spared no time tearing into them. But we’ll be waiting a while before any of them can figure out how to tune the engine without any help from General Motors itself.

C8 Corvette
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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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