Since the C6 generation, the Corvette Grand Sport has been an approachable widebody performance variant of the Corvette family. That was especially true with the C7 Grand Sport, which featured just about all of the 650 hp C7 Z06 hardware, while keeping things to a more manageable 460 horsepower as seen in the entry-level Stingray and its LT1 V8. As for a C8 Corvette Grand Sport, that place in the hierarchy is expected to be replaced by the upcoming E-Ray AWD hybrid model. Yes, a hybrid all-wheel-drive Corvette is coming. And eventually, a fully electric one, as confirmed by GM executives. So, while it feels like there’s little room for a C8 Grand Sport, that hasn’t stopped General Motors from renewing the Corvette Grand Sport trademark.
Filed on May 26, 2022 with the USPTO, the ‘Corvette Grand Sport’ trademark is intended for “motor land vehicles, namely, automobiles.”
As an authority on what you can expect for the C8 Corvette (check out our exclusives leading up to this point: here, here, here, and here), this comes as a bit of a surprise. This could simply mean that GM is reading itself for the C9 Corvette, which we don’t expect until the end of the decade.
If that’s not the case, General Motors could be planning on taking the Grand Sport name back to its roots, turning it into a track-only variant for the C8 Corvette generation. And that would indeed be something. It’s definitely within GM’s capacity to do so, and in the meantime, we’ll be checking in with our people to see what they have to say about it. So, as we’ve told you many times before: stay tuned.
The Grand Sport originally debuted in 1962 on the C2 Corvette, and was a motorsports program done in secret, behind the backs of GM executives. It’s the kind of program that would see intense retribution from the litigious and process-savvy automaker we know today. Only five Grand Sport race cars were snuck out of the factory before the program was swiftly canned, despite intentions to build 125 of them. But Zora Arkus-Duntov kept his job, and continued his mission of turning the Corvette into an American icon.