General Motors top global engineer confirmed that there are no plans for a mid-engine Corvette but commented that a Corvette with a hybrid powertrain is possible. Karl-Friedrich Stracke, GM's vice president of global vehicle engineering, had met with Automotive News and AutoWeek last Tuesday to talks about a broad range of topics, including the next-generation Corvette.
In recent years, there have been many stories in print and on the Internet about the upcoming redesigned Corvette.
There is speculation that GM was developing a mid-engine model. The mid-engine car is expected to arrive in the 2014 model year at the earliest. When asked to comment on these stories, Stracke said that he doesn't know who made it public but that he thinks that "it is wrong." GM spokesman Dan Flores commented that Stracke "is quashing those rumors," adding that "there is no mid-engine in the plans."
He also divulged that a wet dual-clutch transmission isn't included in the plans. An Autocar report stated that earlier this month, a story attributed to a Saab engineer said the Swedish automaker had designed a wet double-clutch transmission for a mid-engine Corvette. The transmission had supposedly been created when Saab was part of GM.
Stracke had headed GM global engineering since December. In the chatrooms, not everyone is in favor of a mid-engine Corvette since it puts the engine behind the driver and passenger seats rather than under the hood. Another hot online issue is the subject of eight cylinders vs. six but Stracke had said that GM won't be testing a V-6 Corvette.
When asked to comment on a hybrid powertrain in a Corvette, Stracke called it "an interesting idea." He also revealed that Porsche will have a full hybridization for their complete lineup to meet CAFE standards.
He said that customers want power and that it will remain that way and that is why carmakers are pressured to produce higher-performing cars that have better fuel economy. [via autonews]