SPEAKER 1: Hey guys. We got a Corvette.
[MUSIC PLAYING] That’s right. We bought a Corvette, a 2020 Chevy Corvette Stingray to be exact. And we’re going to run that in the Edmonds long term fleet where our diverse range of staff and editors evaluate, test, and drive and use these cars just like you would expect, right? In this video, we’re going to explain what we got, why we got it– as if you need a reason. I mean, it’s a new Corvette. And we’re also going to go over any interesting quirks– I mean, attributes– that you may not know about owning a new Corvette. New Corvette! Before we talk about what we got, let’s show off one of the more unique features of the 2020 Corvette Stingray and that is because there’s no more engine up here. It’s back there. You have storage up here. You can access that storage by hitting this button on the key fob or this button right on the fascia– there it is– where I’ve stored the Monoroney for demonstrating that storage and that button press. Before we go over this, why do we call it a Monroney? Well, Monroney is the last name of the senator who sponsored the Automobile Information Disclosure Act of 1958. That created the window sticker and specified the information to be displayed on the window sticker like specs, MSRP, warranty information, and so on. That’s why I prefer the term Monroney because it celebrates that senator’s accomplishment. The more you know and knowing is half the battle. And gee ah! Hello. Let’s walk through the Monroney. Well first off, you notice the exterior color. It’s called rapid blue which by name, means it’s the fastest of the blues. It cost $500. And so far, I’ve had some mixed reactions to it in person. I happen to think it looks pretty cool and it should photograph well. Unlike the carbon flash wheels, those cost $1,000 and those don’t photograph well. So sucks for our photographers/videographers. Glad I’m not one of those. I can tell you in person, the look is growing on me especially the black and blue motif. We also got to highlight some other elements of the car. We got brake calipers painted edge red. That was $600. And then, we got torch red seatbelts for $400 just to finish off the details.
All right. Now, let’s talk about features. We got the 2LT package, which is the mid-level offering of Corvette. You have 1LT, 2LT, 3LT. We decided on 2LT because it was only $7,300 on top of the $59,999 base price so that seemed reasonable. It came with a lot of features, like a superior infotainment display system, a head up display, cargo nets, an extensive exterior camera system. That’s really helpful for a mid engine sports car, especially in LA. Camera. Camera and orange peel. Camera. It also gave us the heated and ventilated front seats or the only seats in the case of a two seat Corvette and adaptive safety features or advanced safety features, like blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert. All very helpful stuff that makes this car really livable to use or we hope really livable in a city like Los Angeles. Now for the performance stuff, we obviously got the Z 51 package because it’s $5,000 and the hardware it adds to this car is worth far more than that. In the case of this particular package, it upgrades your brakes. It upgrades your suspension. It upgrades your cooling and your exhaust. It gives you a performance rear axle ratio. What is that? Well, it’s a shorter final drive. That makes for quicker acceleration. On top that, we also got the upgraded suspension offering, which is magnetic ride control.
You’ve probably heard the term magnet ride. They’re really fancy adaptive shocks that use magnetically reactive fluid inside the shock that can change the viscosity and therefore, the damping characteristics of the shock really quickly and that’s what makes us really comfortable to drive every day. And it also means when you tune this thing up for the track use, you can get the firm and overall suspension control that you want. Now that Magnetic RideControl option cost $1,900. We also opted for the front lift system, the front axle lifts again because we live in LA. And that’s very important so you don’t scrape up the nose. That cost $1,500. As for the interior, we got the GT2 bucket seats. There’s three seat choices in the Corvette. There’s the base seat, the GT2 buckets and then the competition bucket seats.
The reason we got the GT2 and not the competition bucket seats is because in our experience, bucket seats are extreme– at least competitions bucket seats make for really uncomfortable driving experiences on long distance commutes. The GT2 seat we hoped would be a lot more comfortable and so far, it appears to have been. In total, we paid $80,660 for this Corvette. That’s not bad on top of the base price of $59,999. I forget exactly what it is, but who cares. We feel pretty proud about how we optioned this thing. Funny thing about the owner’s manual in this Corvette is it actually says you have an air dam and a splitter that has minimal ground clearance so you should expect to scrape somewhat and that it’s normal, but that’s why we also get front axle lift. And the front axle lift works by the press of a button and it actually memorizes locations via GPS so you only have to hit it once, remember the location, and that’s it. I’ll hit the button now. As you can see, it buys you a couple of like an inch or two of space right here. And especially for this guy right here, which is the most likely thing to get scraped– I’m not saying that out of personal experience. Don’t tell anybody. But unfortunately, this piece does feel a bit like rubber or cheap plastic and it’s not like a really expensive material like carbon fiber or stuff that super cars tend to use. So if you do damage this piece, it shouldn’t be too expensive to repair.
One thing I forgot to talk about with the Monroney walk through and that is the engine appearance package we also optioned. And there it is, the 6.2 liter 495 horsepower V8. Now, we make a big deal out of the Corvette being mid engine. What is mid engine? Well, it’s actually literally the place of the engine within the vehicle. Rear axle is right here. Front wheels are up there. The engine sits behind the passenger compartment, making it a mid engine vehicle. Now, we bought the engine appearance package because it’s such a significant deal. The placement of this engine is such a significant deal for the Corvette. We wanted to highlight it. Now, that engine appearance package includes these carbon fiber bits that surround it and these lights up here that they make this a shrine to the history of push rod Chevy V8s. That’s really neat. Backing up now, functionality and storage space is a core Corvette attribute, so we still have a trunk. Never mind this bag of goodies. We’ll talk about this later and that jug of oil because it’s good to have that why you’re doing break in, which is already done, but we’ll talk about that later. But you still have storage space back here for luggage or also the roof. All C8 Corvettes, except for convertibles obviously, are target tops. That means you can take the roof off. I’m going to demonstrate that process right now to show you what it’s like if it’s just one person doing it. The trick that you should know to start– this is based off my previous experience with C7 Corvettes– is to actually start back here and pop the rear hatch first because doing that is a lot easier when you don’t have a roof in your hands. So inside the cab and you have three releases. One here, one here, and one here. And this, I believe, is like that. And then, you pull this guy back. And then, you pull this guy back.
Now, the roof has been unlocked. So in theory, I should be able to lift this up like that and ooo! It’s a bit heavier than the C7s or maybe I’m getting weaker. All right. So lift this up and then I believe it stores like so. And you’ve got little homes for all the connectors that you use to store the roof in place. Oh yeah. There it is. Got to use a little force. Man up and pinch your finger. But all done. Hey, still an American sports car, right? SPEAKER 2: Carlos? SPEAKER 1: I can’t help it. It’s got to come off. SPEAKER 2: We have to wait. We have to wait. SPEAKER 1: OK. Now, a couple of things jump out at you when you hop in a new Corvette that you just bought. First off, you get this little placard that says no drive through car washes. Or at least, that’s what I take away from this because it could damage parts of the car. Finally, pop off this airbag disclosure because we can get rid of that now and we can take a look at what you get in the bag. What’s in the bag? Your official cleaning cloth for cleaning all the displays, which still have plastic on them. Your Sirius XM information booklet. Your free subscription to the National Corvette Museum Newsletter presumably.
Getting to know your Corvette performance features. Exclusive offer to the Corvette Drivers School. Every new Corvette comes as an invitation for a discounted rate of $1,000 of an exclusive two day course at the Ron Fellows performance driving school at Spring Mountain Motor Resort and Country Club. I’ve been there before on a professional level. It might be fun to go there as a customer now. That’s pretty cool. A reminder to use Mobile One. Your infotainment system walk through. And then finally, your warranty and information booklet and your owner’s manual. But before we dive into this, I really need to take the protective screens– this plastic– off these screens. I really need to do that. Can we do that? Literally the best part of buying anything new. Are you ready for this? I can’t wait anymore. Feels so good. Can use a smoke. Now, let’s get into the owner’s manual. The first thing we’ll talk about is the braking process, which is already done. One of the guys on our team, Rex, valiantly took on the job of getting 1,500 miles on this car as quick as possible so we could do dynamic things with it as quick as possible. And there’s actually a couple tiers to the braking process.
One at 200 miles, one at 500 miles, one at 1,500 miles. It’s all pretty normal stuff, like don’t keep standard engine speed. Don’t use the cruise controls for the first 1,000 miles because you don’t want to maintain just one engine speed for prolonged driving. No full throttle acceleration. None of the aggressive stuff. But once you pass that, you’re good to go. Now, we finished the break in and fortunately, the car didn’t use any oil and it was pretty unremarkable which is a good thing. But we should also talk next about this transmission. So not only is the Corvette the first Corvette with a mid engine layout. It’s actually the first with a dual clutch automatic transmission and it’s only available in that category. No manual.
A dual clutch means really fast shift times and really smooth shifting during day to day driving in the case of this particular car, but it also gives you some other interesting attributes aside from manual up shifts and downshifts which you can do on the pedals here. The owner’s manual highlights two things. One is a double pedal D clutch and the other one is a rapid exit. And I’m going to read you verbatim what those things are. The double pedal D clutch allows the vehicle to temporarily disconnect the engine from the wheels similar to neutral. This feature is activated by pulling and holding both the plus and minus pedal, up shift and downshift pedal, at the same time while the vehicle is in reverse, drive, or manual mode. The vehicle will remain in this condition until both the paddles are released. Why would you do this? Well, much like our GT 500 if you’re cruising along and want to impress people on sidewalks or kids in a school bus, you pull both paddles– temporary and neutral– rev the engine and everybody’s having a great time. I said that in the GT 500 video.
Still maintains true the Corvette. V8 sounds awesome. Everybody should hear the sound of the V8. Fully support that. More V8s. More V8 sound. Now, rapid exit. This is intended for use at a closed course racetrack and not on public roads. Engine power is reapplied to the wheels quickly to support spirited driving. The rate of launch is dependent on how much the accelerator pedal is pressed when the pedals are released. The further the accelerator pedal is pressed, the greater the rate of launch. The tire spin may occur when the accelerator pedal is pressed and the track control system is turned off. This launch occurs when both conditions are met. The vehicle is below 6 miles an hour and both the up shift and downshift pedals are released at the same time. So rapid exit basically means burnouts. When you’re sitting in drive at beneath 6 miles an hour, you pull both paddles, rev the engine, release and you do a burnout straight ahead. I think we’re going to have to test that. When you get a Z 51 equipped Corvette it’s because you want to do some track driving. And look, I get it. There are a lot of sports cars out there that deliver way more performance potential than most shoppers will actually use. That doesn’t matter. You can get that anywhere. What I appreciate about what Chevy has done here and what a lot of other brands do, like Porsche for example, is they actually give you the information and tools to grow to the capability that the car delivers. For example, the owner’s manual of the Corvette has six pages.
Six dedicated to how to prepare your car for track driving and what you should do when you’re on track, how to get there. That’s really neat. I’m going to talk about a couple examples of what’s in the owner’s manual. For one, it says don’t put the exhaust in stealth mode. When you have a variable volume exhaust that goes from stealth– so your neighbors don’t hate you when you turn on your V8 in the morning– to track when it plays that sound as loud as possible, it actually tells you to don’t put these stealth exhaust mode on because damage could result to the exhaust valve actuators because of all the air that you’ll be pushing out the exhaust. Put the exhaust in track. It also tells you if you have a front license plate equipped– like we will need to because we live in California and saving my California tirade– it tells you to remove that plate and put the aero cover back on that comes with the car. Now the list of things that you have to do to prepare this car for track– there’s a list of things that Chevy recommends that you do to prepare this car for track use is fairly exhaustive, such to the point that we’ll actually cover that in a separate video. We’ll talk about the performance attributes that you get from preparing this car for track use. But the things that I want to call out, there’s a couple things I want to call out. One, this car has a brake fade warning assist. So if you’re driving on track and you start exceeding the thermal capability of your brake fluid, a little light will come on and tell you that you don’t have brakes.
I’ve been in a couple of situations where I’ve been driving fast on track and I’ve come into a couple of areas without brakes. And let me tell you, that is a hair raising experience let’s say. And the fact that there’s little warning light that will come on and tell you when your brake fluid is too hot is really helpful, provided you pay attention to it. It also walks you through brake burnishing. If you remember from our GT 500 long term vehicle intro, there’s a long and exhaustive checklist that you have to go through to prepare your brakes for high temperature operation. The Corvette is no different. It has that list of things that you need to do in order to get your brakes up to temperature. For example, apply the brakes 25 times from 60 while deaccelerating at 0.4 G. And then next, apply the brakes 25 times starting at 60 miles an hour while deaccelerating at 0.8 G. It’s an exhaustive procedure that works well if you have a test track like we do, but let’s say you don’t have a test track. How do you do that without breaking the law on public roads? Well, Chevy appears to acknowledge how ludicrous the official brake burnishing procedure is and gives you an alternate way to do it at a track day during your first session. That’s really neat. The alignment settings that Chevy specifies are interesting as well because there are super aggressive. This being the first mid engine Corvette available to market, there’s probably a lot of concerns about how this thing would drive on public roads. Over steer can be a big issue with mid engine cars and you need to be on your game in order to maintain dynamic control of the vehicle in the situation. So if you’re not that great of a driver and you could drive a mid engine car fast, there’s a chance you may hurt yourself. So what Chevy appears to have done is put a fairly conservative street alignment on this car that basically induces understeer when you start pushing the car so to save people from themselves.
That’s OK because what they’ve also done is provided an extremely aggressive track alignment settings. I want to say that to show how far Chevy has gone to explain how to set up this car for track use. It’s really nice. Now, what’s in the bag? It’s a bunch of plastic brake ducts. Why are they in the bag? Well, when you get the Z 51 package and you get this car in a lift, you’ll see that the entire bottom of the car basically with the exception of the oil filter thankfully is flat. There’s nothing much to access back there. And it’s all guarded by plastic that looks a lot like this, including the front wheels and tires. They have brake ducts that get air from underneath the car and dumped them on the brakes to cool them down. Now, these are rear brake ducts that Chevy says you do not install them for the street and you only install them on the track. Why does Chevy say that? Well, if you Google around online, you’ll see why from other customers who’ve installed this on their car. It’s because this duct right here sits at about that level with the side of the car. And so, that means it’s more likely to get damaged and scraped while you drive it over speed bumps and stuff. It’s not necessarily a big deal because of the wear. This would scrape and that’s fine. This is cheap plastic. I can’t imagine this is more than 20 bucks or $50 to get, so that’s not a big deal. It’s a big deal because what happens when you drive over a napkin or what happens when you drive over a plastic bag? That would get sucked and dumped right on the rear suspension and that could create a bad situation. So if you plan on taking your car, your Corvette Z 51, to a track day that requires heavy braking, big braking zones, you’re going to want to bring this with you.
You’re going to want to bring a jack with you. You’re going to want to bring jack stands with you and you’re going to want to install these. Fortunately, you have the instructions and the fasteners inside the car. So you can either do this all at the track day or you can take your car to a dealership, or a mechanic, or do it in your driveway the night before your track day and do it all there and then just risk on the drive. That’s the track preparation kit. It’s fairly extensive, but I appreciate that Chevy gives you the option to do this. And you can be sure we’re going to do this and see how this entire process works. That wraps up our first look at our 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, but the video isn’t over. Next, we’re going to look at the factory footage of this exact car getting built. Now before we do that, I’m going to tell you to check out the links below to visit Edmonds.com to see the long term blog for this car and other ones like it in our fleet. And then as a segue to our car being built, I’m going to do what’s called a rapid exit. [CAR REVING] It was a really different time when we ordered our Corvette. We had big plans for it. We were going to go to the factory, watch our car get assembled, and then pick it up at the Corvette Museum. We had no idea what a global pandemic was. So all that obviously didn’t happen, but we were able to get footage of the Corvette being assembled. What’s really cool about this is we can see our actual car get assembled. That’s really neat. If you’ve never toured a car factory, a modern car factory, I highly recommend you put it on your to do list. The modern automobile is the most complex consumer good you can get. And so when you see them get assembled, it’s just fascinating.
Watching it all come together is a lot to take in because of all the moving parts and pieces. And what’s really neat is when you can see your actual car going through the process, like we’re doing. Now here’s the Corvette’s bare body. I don’t know if this is actually our car or not, but this is where all the Corvettes start out as. It’s a bunch of complex aluminum shapes and structures that have been welded together to form the structure of the vehicle itself. We’ll watch the rest of the stuff get added, body panels, the interior, the drive train, chassis. It’s like watching super advanced Lego which is really neat. Here’s the eight speed dual clutch automatic before it’s attached to the engine. Now, this is actually a transaxle because it’s combining the jobs of a transmission, a differential, and a axle all into one. It’s supplied by a company called Tremec and what’s interesting is they also supply the seven speed dual clutch automatic transmission for the GT 500. Different transmission entirely, but they both come from the same supplier.
Now, we’re looking at the engine and transmission which have been joined together as one unit and they’re getting lowered onto the rear axle or the rear chassis so you can see the brakes and axles all there. And you can a check here the location of the oil filter. It’s actually a pretty handy place because when the car’s on a lift, you have pretty easy access and that can be frustrating with some sports cars that have really dense complicated constructions. So here we see the complete drive train and chassis. And by that, I mean the engine transaxle, axles, suspension, and brakes. And we can also see the front suspension and brakes too. And those lines connecting the front and rear, they look like coolant or brake lines. It’s pretty neat to see how it all works out. Now, the chassis gets lifted up to meet the body and the assembly line workers attach it through all the different connection points that they have. But what’s really neat about this is it gives you a picture of where everything sits in this mid engine car. You may not think much about a dash panel because you don’t really understand what’s inside of it and what’s underneath it. It’s actually a massive piece with a lot of complex things happening inside and you can see that just by how much effort it takes to get the thing in. So it’s neat to see. It’s really cool to see the underside in the backside and the parts that you don’t normally get to see. Now, here’s a montage of all the exterior bits like the panels, the roofs, and interior parts getting put on and headlights too which is pretty cool. Now you’d think with seats, you would just lift them up, put them in and bolt them on. But no, there’s actually a specialized machine that makes sure they’re put in place properly and then, they’re easier to torque down once they’re in place thanks to that machine. And here, the rest of the interior panels getting put into place. As the assembly line finishes, there’s a lot of quality control checks happening to make sure that everything is within standards when a car comes off the assembly line. We can see here just a glimpse of some of the things people have to do. There’s paint checks. There’s proper installation checks. There’s checks for panel gap and so on. We’re only looking at a few parts of the process here, but it’s really again really cool to see. This is why you should go to a modern factory. You’ve got to love seeing the exhaust of working presumably for the first time. It’s hey, the whole thing just came together. It’s come to life now. It’s become more than the sum of its parts. And finally, we see it move. This isn’t our exact car. Our car’s got different wheels, but we could see one like it move off the assembly line. So that wraps up the introduction to our long term Corvette Stingray. We do have big plans for this car. We still do, in spite of the whole pandemic thing, but we also want to hear what you want to see us do with this Corvette. Let us know in the comments below and be sure to visit Edmonds.com. You can see the links below to see our long term post where we report on what it’s like to live with this car. Thanks for watching.