1990 Chevrolet Corvette CERV III Concept

Article by Andrew Christian, on December 29, 2015

CERVIII was Chevrolet’s final attempt at a mid-engine Corvette concept. Inspired by the Corvette Indy released four years prior to the CERVIII, this vehicle was designed to be driven. Jam packed with advanced technology, the CERVIII’s purpose is to enhance performance.

The sheer cost to produce this one off vehicle means it will always remain a concept car. Keeping it light weight, the body is made of nomex, Kevlar and carbon fibre. With a honeycomb design the vehicle is reinforced with aluminium.

The material is a composite unit in one-piece. The resulting effect is it has minimalistic drag at 0.277 Cd. The engine is a power hungry Lotus-tuned 5.7 litre V8 master piece. Twin Garett Turbochargers, Mahle pistons and reinforced connecting rods enable the engine to achieve 650 horsepower.

Mix this with the super low-drag body and the result is that the CERVIII can reach a maximum startling speed of 225 mph. When faced with so much power and speed, the quality of the brakes is essential. Each wheel has been given a dual disc setup.

This results in a layering of brakes and a doubling of the impacted surface area. This brings instant and responsive braking but the trade-off is an increase in the vehicle’s weight. An exciting new innovation is that the CERVIII has a double transmission with six forward speeds, taking gear change into a new millennium.

A three-speed Hydramaic unit is connected to a custom two speed transmission creating six gears. Shifting the gears is automatically computer generated, so the driver can focus on the unique driving experience the CERVIII offers. Taking inspiration from the Porsche 959, the CERVIII uses a viscous-coupling system.

Power is moved from the transmissions to the wheels resulting in almost suction like traction and varying torque between the front and rear wheels.

This concept car was the closest Corvette came to a mid-engine prototype. But there is little appetite amongst consumers for major changes to the Corvette which meant that this model will always remain just a concept car.

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