2011 Chevrolet Corvette Performance

$20,573 - $26,521

2011 Chevrolet Corvette Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2011 Chevrolet Corvette was new.


Performance: 9.2

With performance capabilities matching those of more expensive exotics, reviewers find that the Corvette is like a bargain-priced Ferrari -- and performs as wonderfully as that sounds. Introduced just last year is the Corvette Grand Sport, which features design and performance cues from the all-powerful Z06.

  • "Trust us: Driving is believing when it comes to this American icon. Even a short stint behind the wheel will revolutionize your thinking. The Corvette is silly fast in any form, it sticks to the road and it's more pleasant as a daily driver than anything this capable has a right to be." -- Edmunds
  • "Performance is outstanding, with excellent acceleration from the big engine, nicely tuned handling, the high-tech magnetic-ride system, and better gas mileage than any of its competitors." -- CNET
  • "What really astounds me is that a car priced at 'only' $56,000 (our test model) is recognized globally, just like the Porsche, Ferrari, and Lamborghini. And having driven all of those cars in recent months, I can say that if speed and performance are your goals -- but at least some monetary restraint is in order -- this new Corvette is the car for you." -- Boston Globe
  • "The Verdict: One of the best performance values is now even more enticing." -- Car and Driver

Power and Acceleration

The 2011 Corvette is Ferrari-fast -- with Car and Driver reporting a 0 to 60 mph time of just 4.2 seconds. Equipped with a 6.2-liter V8 engine and six-speed manual transmission, the base Corvette makes 430-horsepower. Meanwhile, the Corvette Grand sport makes 436 horsepower, but only when equipped with an optional two-mode exhaust system. A six-speed paddle shift transmission with automatic mode is optional. Though the EPA has yet to rate the 2011 Corvette’s city/highway fuel economy, the highly-similar 2010 model nets 16/26 mpg when equipped with a manual transmission and 15/25 mpg with an automatic.

  • "No question here: The 2011 Chevrolet Corvette can bring the heat. The base car is extremely fast: the Z06, terrifyingly so." -- Edmunds
  • "This engine is a work of art, and uses big displacement to generate plenty of torque and horsepower." -- CNET
  • "Straight-line acceleration is relentless and on par with that of other 6.2-liter Corvettes we've tested: 0 to 60 mph in 4.2 seconds and the quarter-mile in 12.6 at 115 mph. The convertible has an estimated coupe-matching top speed of 185 mph." -- Car and Driver
  • "The manual transmission is generally smooth, but it sometimes has a heavy, notchy feel. The automatic shifts smoothly, but downshifts often require a deep stab of the throttle." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Sure, Vettes always have been fast, but the new one is a real stormer." -- AutoWeek
  • "[T]he best six-speed manual transmission I've driven in a Corvette. ... I'm also a little surprised at how much I liked the manual transmission. In previous years, Chevrolet offered a manual or an automatic for the same price, and the Corvette is one of a handful of sports cars that I preferred with the automatic." -- Orlando Sentinel
  • "If you're looking for a Corvette experience without the demands of a manual tranny, check out the easier, though by no means wimpy, automatic version " -- BusinessWeek

Handling and Braking

Test drivers find the Corvette handles marvelously. What's more, its sporty dynamics don't make everyday driving a chore. This is particularly noteworthy considering that other vehicles with similar capabilities are too stiff and harsh to drive anywhere but the track. The newly introduced Grand Sport trim, which is a step above the base Corvette, but below the Z06, features enhanced performance technology -- including wider wheels, revised suspension settings and Z06-sized brakes.

  • "The steering has the right amount of quickness, and the ride is good over most roads. ... Handling and braking are superb. A short trip to the local 7-Eleven even can be fun because it's enjoyable to drive any car that is so responsive to driver commands." -- Chicago Sun-Times
  • "Sports cars that can squirt to 60 miles per hour in 4.3 seconds and have a top track speed of 190 mph are often hard-edged, rough-riding and demanding. Not so this one. The ride, while not as soft as a luxury sedan's, is pleasantly smooth, easily comfortable for everyday commuting or running errands." -- Kansas City Star
  • "Base models with the standard suspension ride surprisingly well, with a solid blend of comfort and firm control. Convertibles have impressively little structural shake and body quiver. Grand Sport is never smooth, but it's never punishing either." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The borrowed Z06 brakes [in the Grand Sport] are good for a stellar 150-foot stop from 70 to 0 mph in this car, and they offer solid pedal feel and good modulation." -- Car and Driver

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