MSRP
$58,900

2020 Chevrolet Corvette Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 9.2

The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette is an incredible performer at its price point. This supercar is lightning fast and responsive when you want it to be, yet it's also laid back and comfortable when you are ready for a relaxing tour of the countryside. Only one powertrain is currently available in this midengine car, and it gets few complaints. The only trivial drawback is that, for some, the Corvette comes across as a little too docile and refined alongside some of its boisterous competitors.

  • "At the end of the day, what the Corvette is all about is the driving experience. Thanks to the midengine arrangement, not only is the weight more evenly distributed front and rear, the engine sits lower for a lower center of gravity. The car feels more planted and predictable. You really feel in control. A function of 470 hp and a svelte 3,500 pounds of mass, acceleration is as neck snapping as you want it to be." -- Autotrader
  • "So while the C8 Corvette hasn’t redefined mid-engine handling or braking, it’s a very good performer, and it makes good on GM’s outrageous acceleration claims." -- Road and Track
  • "Toe into the throttle, and the torque is plentiful enough to zip through traffic without raising the V8’s voice. The new dual-clutch transmission quietly goes about its work just like a traditional GM automatic. In the first 10 minutes, it’s clear: I could live with this as my only car." -- Autoweek

Acceleration and Power

A 6.2-liter V8 engine resides in the middle of the Corvette, and it cranks out 490-horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque. Add the Z51 package, and the output increases to 495 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque. The top speed is 194 mph.

The C8 Corvette launches with fervor, sprinting from zero to 60 mph in under three seconds when outfitted with the optional Z51 Performance package. Plenty of muscle is on tap at any speed, and the powertrain always behaves in a polished manner. For some, it's almost too refined, as it lacks some of the sound and fury some expect from a midengine car.

Only one gearbox is currently available, and no manual transmission is optional. Most professional reviewers do not count this as a drawback, as the refined eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission snaps off shifts quickly.

  • "Untangling our feelings about the C8 Stingray starts with examining its performance, which definitely lives up to expectations. With 60.6 percent of its mass over the rear tires -- the C7 Stingray had a roughly 50/50 front-to-rear weight distribution -- the C8 is ferocious off the line." -- Car and Driver
  • "While there’s no provision for a manual transmission, the 8-speed DCT does a great job of providing smooth, seamless shifts in everyday driving, with the responses sharpening considerably when Sport or Sport+ modes are engaged. You can manually work your way through the gears with the paddle shifts, however, the logic on the transmission does such a good job of learning your driving style and level of enthusiasm you’ll find more often than not it’s preferable just to let the car do its thing." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • The other side of the coin is a disconnectedness from the raw performance of the car. The engine is rather quiet for a Corvette (though it retains that distinctive small-block roar), and the transmission is so smooth in Tour mode that you don't get a sense of just how fast you're going, at least until you brake. Similarly, it neither looks nor feels like a sub-3-second 0-60 sprint, but the numbers don't lie. There's never a big shove of torque; the engine's delivery is always exactly the same. You just gain speed, as simple as that. The dual-clutch transmission is exceptional for a first try, a game effort to match Porsche's benchmark PDK." -- Motor Trend

Handling and Braking

The Corvette is nimble, balanced, and easy for most drivers to handle. It comes with six drive modes: Weather, Tour, Sport, Track, My Mode (a customizable setup), and Z-Mode, which builds off My Mode and adds further engine and transmission configurations. Each setting is distinguishable from the others, allowing the Corvette to adjust from a comfortable touring two-door into a racetrack-ready supercar. The steering, brakes, and suspension respond quickly to your requests, the result of which is athletic handling and high levels of grip.

Rear-wheel drive and a limited-slip differential are standard. There's a long list of upgrades for the 2020 Corvette: a rapidly adjusting Magnetic Selective Ride Control and Performance Traction Management system, Z51 performance Brembo brakes, a Z51 performance suspension, an electronic limited-slip differential, a Z51-specific front splitter and rear spoiler, a heavy-duty cooling system, and high-performance tires.

  • "Chevy made every effort to make the new Corvette more rigid, which translates into better control and cornering. Whether cruising along the freeway or attacking a few curves, the 2020 Corvette is every inch the supercar Chevrolet hoped it would be. And, we still think it's the best performance bang for the buck." -- Autotrader
  • "While the C8's performance places it within the bounds of the supercar class, character matters as much as capability. … Make no mistake, if you want to haul ass down a writhing piece of asphalt, this car will do it at astounding velocities, with a viselike grip on the pavement and the haughty assuredness of a car born to the task. … The faster you go, the better the C8 feels. The steering cuts like a race car's, and the cornering limits are virtually out of reach on the street -- though steering feel and feedback aren't as communicative as those from a Porsche 911 or a McLaren 720S." -- Car and Driver
  • "It goes without saying that during my time with the car, the Z51's uprated Brembo brakes … were never remotely challenged. … One other almost surreally friendly drive characteristic of the C8? Ride quality. With my tester's optional Z51 Performance Suspension with Magnetic Ride Control, the Corvette's suppleness is remarkable, especially on watchstrap run-flat tires. I even happily trundled through towns on Michigan's broken roads and and [sic] over railroad crossings without bothering to switch out of Sport mode. … The takeaway? Even with my loaded 3LT test car's $85,710-as-delivered price tag, the Corvette delivers an unprecedented amount of performance for the money." -- CNET

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