For me, the rumors and speculation start to feel more real when mainstream publications begin doing featured pieces. We get a trifecta of exciting news in the May 2023 issue of Car and Driver, and today will focus on the most controversial of the three. Is the expansion of the Corvette brand with the addition of an SUV, that we wrote about here, really happening? And, will this electric offering from GM actually be an EV or hybrid, as speculated?
The idea of a Corvette SUV, much like the Ford Mustang Mach-E, has received considerable criticism from purists who say the Corvette name should not be on anything except the traditional two-seater. It’s now being reported that we can put to rest the speculation this controversial SUV will be an EV or hybrid, at least in the beginning. The SUV will be built on the tried and true Alpha platform, which underpins the Camaro and the Cadillac CT4-V and CT5-V Blackwing masterpieces. The main advantage of using this Alpha platform is the plethora of awesome powertrains available, eventually resulting in an exotic beating 680+hp version, with Porsche in GM’s sights.
It’s also reported that this Alpha platform could produce two Porsche-beating variants, a smaller version to take on the Macan, and a bigger brother to tackle the Cayenne. Given the history of the Corvette versus 911 rivalry, it only makes sense for GM to set its sights on the popular family haulers from Porsche. It’s also worth mentioning, this segment is where the big profit margins on the spreadsheet reside, and frankly, GM has been leaving money on the performance-SUV table for too long.
How many different engines and power levels are we talking about? The smaller Macan-beater is speculated to have a 300+ hp 4-cylinder turbo for the base model and a 400+ hp twin-turbo V6 for the pricier upper trim levels. The larger Cayenne-challenging Corvette SUV will get the 400+ hp twin-turbo in base trim, and the iconic 6.2-liter small block V8 tuned to 500+ hp will help propel the upper trims past the Cayenne. It’s expected for all trim levels to come standard with all-wheel-drive and shift via a 10-speed automatic transmission.
Doesn’t sound like enoughhorsepower for the Corvette family hauler to be king of the performance SUV hill? Well, how about the supercharged 682 hp 6.2-liter V8 from the Cadillac Escalade V, will that do the trick? Throw some fat 335 tires on her, carbon-ceramic brakes, and Z08 badging (I made that up), and GM will have yet another bang-for-the-buck exotic beater in its arsenal, this time going after the big guns like the Aston Martin DBX, Mercedes-Benz AMG G63, and Lamborghini Urus.
Car and Driver expects Chevy to reveal the Corvette SUV later this year and for it to arrive at dealerships in the latter half of 2024 with a starting price of around $60,000.
Stay tuned, because tomorrow I’ll be addressing the other two Corvettes in the trifecta teaser from Car and Driver. For today, I’ll leave you with a video from HotCars, which has a creative Z71 off-road rendering of the new Corvette SUV. We have an active community on our Facebook page, I would love to hear from you! Douglas B.