- Mix-and-match of Stingray and Z06 components
- Focus is on maximizing handling, not acceleration
- Wide range of exterior and interior colors
- Collector’s Edition variant has special paint, stripes, wheels, interior
- Available as a coupe or a convertible
- On sale in summer 2016
Ever thought to yourself that your Corvette Stingray Z71 simply doesn’t handle as well as you’d like? Ever wondered how in the world you might afford the upgrade to the Corvette Z06? If so, then you are in luck, because Chevrolet has introduced the new 2017 Corvette Grand Sport at the 2016 Geneva International Motor Show.
With the new Corvette Grand Sport, Stingray buyers get a heaping helping of Z06 components without the Z06 powertrain upgrade or the Z06 price tag. The result is a quicker car around a track, if not in a straight line.
Look closely and you’ll see that the new Corvette Grand Sport looks different. It’s got a Z06 grille for better breathing, swollen rear fenders to cover the wide rear tires, and aerodynamic enhancements that generate greater downforce at speed. Chevrolet will sell the Grand Sport in both coupe and convertible body styles, and in a wide variety of color choices.
Chevrolet says the Corvette Grand Sport will be available in the full roster of Stingray interior color selections. The automaker has not commented further on standard equipment.
Depending on whether Chevrolet equips the Grand Sport to 1LT, 2LT, or 3LT specification, the list of factory options for this new version of the Corvette could be long or it could be short. Either way, Chevy dealerships have a long list of accessories with which owners can customize a Corvette.
Confirmed options for the Grand Sport include a Heritage package that adds hash-mark fender graphics and hash-mark detailing to the car’s brushed aluminum interior trim. Full-length racing stripes are also available for the Grand Sport. For maximum performance, a Grand Sport Z07 equipment package adds carbon-ceramic brakes, Michelin Sport Cup 2 summer performance tires, and a carbon-fiber aero kit.
Set to launch after the Grand Sport goes on sale, a Collector’s Edition version features exclusive Watkins Glen Gray paint with Tension Blue hash-mark graphics, a Tension Blue leather and suede interior, black wheels, and black stripes. Grand Sport Collector’s Edition models will also have a dash-mounted plaque displaying the car’s build sequence number.
Under the Hood
A 6.2-liter V-8 engine lives beneath the Grand Sport’s hood. Rated to make 460 horsepower and 465 lb.-ft. of torque, the engine is equipped with a dry sump oiling system and an active exhaust system.
A 7-speed manual gearbox with Active Rev Match technology is standard, and an 8-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters and special performance calibration is an option. The Grand Sport comes standard with an automatic-locking rear differential.
Chassis tuning and cooling systems are lifted from the Corvette Z06, and the Grand Sport is equipped with a Magentic Ride Control suspension and modified suspension components. The Brembo braking system features 14-in. front rotors clamped by 6-piston calipers, and 13.4-in. rear rotors with 4-piston calipers.
Michelin Pilot Super Sport summer tires are standard, measuring 285/30ZR19 in front and 335/25ZR20 in back. Chevrolet claims 1.05g of lateral cornering grip with the standard rubber, and 1.2g of stick with the optional Z07 package. According to the automaker, a Grand Sport with the Z07 package is less than one second slower around GM’s proving grounds than the previous-generation Corvette ZR1.
Like other Corvettes, the 2017 Grand Sport will have a standard reversing camera and OnStar subscription services with an automatic collision-notification system. If you’re looking for driving-assistance technologies, this isn’t the car for you.
Actually, there is one driver-assistance feature worth noting, and it’s a curb-view camera system designed to help prevent unintentional scraping and the body or wheel damage usually associated with it.
Chevrolet will also offer its Performance Data and Video Recorder for the Corvette Grand Sport. This system records video of track-day hijinks on an SD card, and can place an overlay of your performance statistics on the video. After you get home from the track you can upload the video to social media platforms.