Even though the Porsche 911 has a price significantly higher than that of the entry level Chevrolet Corvette, Porsche sets a benchmark for high end performance so it should come as no great surprise that after the new 911 was introduced with a pair of 7-speed transmissions, the Corvette was close to follow with a 7-speed gearbox of its own. Very little is known about the possible 7-speed Corvette manual transmission but we can expect to see a pair of overdrive gears for improved fuel economy while the first five gears can offer closer and more aggressive ratios to enhance performance. We can also expect this transmission to be designed and tuned for high performance – even though GM might talk up the advantages in fuel economy by adding the extra gear. This new transmission may also allow General Motors to use the same manual transmission option across the entire Corvette range where the current Corvette lineup features a different, more performance oriented transmission in the likes of the Z06 and ZR1 while the base model Corvette carries a less aggressively tuned manual transmission.
In addition to the 7-speed manual transmission, the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette is expected to offer a new version of the tried and true GM small block V8 – pushrods and all – but while the old school engine construction is expected we can also plan to see plenty of new technology. Items like direct injection and variable valve timing have allowed GM to make great improvements in fuel economy without compromising performance in many of their new engines (like the 3.6L V6 in the Camaro) so adding these features to the next generation small block V8 headed into the C7 Corvette should improve fuel economy, performance and drivability.
If the C7 Corvette is indeed going to hit the streets in 2014, you would think that we would get some look at it within the next year via one of the American auto shows. Perhaps GM could roll out a C7 Corvette Concept at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show to compete with the next generation Dodge Viper? The Viper’s debut hasn’t been announced either but with the Dodge supercar set to hit the streets next spring or summer, you would have to expect to see the Viper debut no later than Detroit (January 2012) so perhaps GM will try to steal some of Dodge’s thunder with the first look at the C7 Corvette?
TorqueNews will continue bringing you all of your American supercar news as the next generation of the Chevrolet Corvette and Dodge Viper near production.
Other GM News:
First Chevy Camaro ZL1 advertisements hit the web
A look at the most important terms of the new UAW/GM contract
The Cadillac ATS spotted testing on the Nürburgring
GM expects most 2012 Camaro ZL1 buyers to pick auto trans
Dodge Viper ACR destroys production Nürburgring record with a 7:12