In the two years leading up to the car’s debut in July 2019, there were numerous patents that began surfacing detailing potential new active aerodynamics systems under development for the lifecycle of the C8 Corvette.
Active aero systems usually constitute highly complex electrical systems made up of sensors and actuators that can open panels, or deploy splitters and spoilers in order to manipulate how the air flows around the vehicle. The ecosystem is controlled by an algorithm that uses sensor inputs and threshold parameters to determine when and where aerodynamic activation is necessary. MC&T was first to report that an active aero kit will debut on the upcoming C8 Corvette ZR1, and possibly the C8 Corvette Z06 in later model years, followed by the almighty Corvette Zora in due time. But those vehicles are far from done, and that’s is what makes this Chevrolet Corvette Academy video so fascinating.
As pointed out by Corvette Blogger, this video was actually included in the launch materials for the C8 back in 2019 but it quietly slipped through seemingly unnoticed due to the volume of information released at the time. The video, titled “2020 Corvette: Aero, Cooling and Downforce,” shows a C8 Stingray clay model testing with what appears to be a unique rear spoiler which is integrated into the C8’s rear deck. Cut to the 2:10 mark to see for yourself.
Chevy did tell us that during development the team had three full-size clay models with each car sporting two different designs for the side intakes. As a caveat, it’s important to consider that this video could simply be showing a discarded spoiler design rather than a subtle tease of an active rear spoiler planned for future performance models.
According to our sources, the video does not tease the upcoming C8 Corvette active aero system, and it’s simply a mock up test for the base Stingray. Regardless, we’ll know what Chevy has in store for top-shelf C8 Corvette Z06, C8 Corvette ZR1 and C8 Corvette Zora supercars soon enough.
The C8’s current Z51 performance pack features a split-wing spoiler perched on the end of the rear deck, it’s nice, but it certainly lacks the elegance of the hydraulically controlled integrated rear spoiler of the Ford GT.
– By Michael Accardi