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Auto blogTue, 22 Jan 2013 13:29:00 EST
It was inevitable that we'd see the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray topless at some point, but that didn't make us any less interested when a pair of supposedly leaked official images showed up on theautoinsiderblog.com last week. We posted them on our Facebook page, but held off reporting on them here until we could get a little more information.
Those images, which feature a dark red car on a sterile black studio background, supposedly first appeared on the website of diecast model maker Maisto. A Chevrolet spokesman has been reported saying that they are "not official images released by Chevrolet PR," which isn't a denial they're the real deal, but neither is it a confirmation.
Close examination of the photos suggest they could be official shots of the Corvette Stingray Convertible, and while some have doubted their authenticity due to a lack of vents (which were seen on the C7s that debuted in Detroit last week), it could be that the images are of a base model car without the Z51 package that doesn't require the extra venting and cooling.
Four different General Motors vehicles from the 2012 model year are being recalled over a potential airbag issue. The driver's side airbag shorting bar in the 2012 Buick Verano and 2012 Chevrolet Camaro, Cruze and Sonic might make contact with the airbag terminals, even during a crash. If so, the airbag won't deploy when it should, possibly increasing injury to the driver.
The recall is expected to begin on February 13 for the 3,896 units that might be affected. GM will notify owners who can then take their vehicles to dealers to have the airbag coil replaced. A bulletin from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration below has more info.
When Mark Reuss was in LA recently, he sat down to have a few words with the scribes at the Los Angeles Times. When the issue of a hybrid Corvette came up, Reuss answered with "Don't laugh." The General Motors president is a complete fan of the possibility, calling it "attractive" and "really fun," believing it would improve GM expertise and that "people would love it."
Naturally, the president being supportive of an idea doesn't give indication that a hybrid Corvette is on the way. However, with supercars like the Porsche 918 Spyder and Ferrari LaFerrari giving hybrid tech a solid, if remote, place in the performance car world, the inexorable trickle-down of technology means we shouldn't be surprised if and when it does happen.
And now that we have that non-negative half-answer to a speculative question, it would be irresponsible for us not to commence rumormilling for the C8 Corvette. Taking Reuss at his word, the C8 will obviously be a hybrid with all-wheel-drive - the left side wheels driven with electric motors, the right side with the mid-mounted, four-cylinder diesel engine. With coefficient of drag of just .16, figure on a 0-to-60 mile-per-hour time of under 2 seconds and an all-electric range of something like 30 miles at top speed. Don't forget, folks, you read it here first.