Corvette Glossary Of Terms – W

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Corvette Glossary Of Terms



Wagoner, George

George Richard “Rick” Wagoner, Jr. (born February 9, 1953) is an American businessman and former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of General Motors. Wagoner resigned as Chairman and CEO at General Motors on March 29, 2009, at the request of the White House.  The latter part of Wagoner’s tenure as CEO of General Motors found him under heavy criticism as the market valuation of GM went down by more than 90% and the company lost more than $82 billion USD. This led to his being named one of the worst CEOs of 2008. Information courtesy of Wikipedia. Corvsport Page Reference: 2009 Overview.

Welburn, Edward T.

Edward T. Welburn is General Motors’ current Vice President of Global Design. To date, he holds the highest-ranking position as an African American in the automotive industry. He has overseen the development of recent GM products, such as the 2010 Buick LaCrosse, 2010 Chevrolet Camaro, Chevrolet Malibu, Cadillac CTS, and Buick Enclave. Recent concepts overseen by Welburn include the Cadillac Converj, Cadillac CTS Coupe, Chevrolet Camaro Coupe, Chevrolet Camaro Convertible, and the Buick Invicta Concept.

Welburn has restored many of the famous concept vehicle from GM’s rich heritage including the Buick Y job, StingRay racer, Manta Ray and more. The mechanical assembly area at GM Design has also been uplifted by Mr. Welburn. He holds the same position at General Motors that Harley Earl and Bill Mitchell once held. Information courtesy of Wikipedia. Corvsport Page References: C7 Corvette Overview,  2009 Overview.

Winchell, Frank

Frank Winchell was a Chevrolet Engineer who was also responsible for the early development of a rear engine Corvette Prototype designated XP-819.  Assigned to Chevrolet’s Research and Development program in 1959, Winchell’s early work led him to become part of the engineering team that would attempt to exonerate the Corvair after Chevrolet began receiving lawsuits due to the Corvair’s tendency to “roll over” in various driving conditions.

Winchell was also Chevy’s “go-to guy” during the early years of Jim Hall’s Chaparral race cars. It was Winchell’s belief that a rear-engine Corvette would be a natural next-step in the car’s evolution. While he was passionate about this belief, there were many in Chevrolet who disagreed with this opinion – most especially Zora Arkus-Duntov, who felt that a mid-engine design was the better basis of design. In the end, Duntov proved to be correct – the XP-819 was a monumental failure, and was destroyed on its initial test run. However, some of the XP-819’s design cues were utilized in the final design of the C3 Corvette. Corvsport Page References: C3 Corvette Overview.

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