Chevrolet is offering something of interest to any Chevrolet Corvette owner. It’s a new software update that will shave a second off their lap times. But this is only available for certain C7 generation Corvettes. Basically, the software modifies the Magnetic Ride Control suspension to improve the car’s handling as well as its ride quality.
Not everyone may be aware of Magnetic Ride Control. It’s actually Chevy’s term for the magnetorheological suspension dampers that are fitted into the Corvette, the Camaro, and some Cadillac V-Series models. The software upgrade was made possible because the damper’s performance in the car’s various driving modes (Tour, Sport and Track) is controlled by the model’s on-board computers. So it only needs a software patch to change the car’s handling characteristics.
After the software upgrade, a 2016 Corvette Z06 example was able to cut down a little over a second off the lap time at GM’s 2.9 mile Milford Road Course test track. As for the handling, General Motors’ vice president of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports, Jim Campbell, says that the car feels more balanced and there are more linear responses to driver inputs as well. One would instantly feel the changes and will appreciate them.
Well, here are a few things you may want to know about this upgrade. The download only costs $350 at a Chevy dealer, who will instantly update to the latest Magnetic Ride Control setup. Do not worry as this will not affect your Corvette’s warranty, since it is a dealer-installed, factory developed upgrade anyway.
For those of you who will be asking, the software upgrade will be available for the 2014-2016 Corvette Stingray Z51, the 2016 Stingray, and the 2015-2016 Corvette Z06. Later on, Chevrolet will give us more details regarding the updated calibrations for other Corvette models. One of which we should expect is the Magnetic Ride Control suspension of the Corvette Grand Sport.
At the ongoing 2017 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, Chevrolet debuts a new COPO Camaro drag racer and a supercharged Silverado Performance Concept pickup truck. It was also at the same event where Chevrolet announced the software update to the public. We can expect this upgrade on commercial models like the Cadillac ELR to sports sedans like the Chevrolet SS, and perhaps even on a full-sized GMC.
Whoever said that the seventh-generation Corvette does not have room for any upgrade? Well, if you once thought that, Chevrolet has proven you wrong. And this must be the simplest way one could make his ride faster, without having to bring it to an aftermarket tuner.