Yes, it looks like it's happening.

Speculation surrounding a mid-engined Chevrolet Corvette has been around since the dawn of time. America's mid-life crisis favourite has been front-engined and rear-wheel drive since its introduction in 1953 – although the car's trademark V8 engine didn't come along until 1955.

Actually, the Corvette has been mid-engined since the mid-1980s, but it's a front-mid layout. The thought of switching to a supercar-like rear-mid layout is something considered blasphemous by the Corvette faithful. Well, it appears to be happening.

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As if the never-ending stream of test mule spy shots flooding the internet wasn't enough, dealers in the US have reportedly been given a sneak preview of the car. Unfortunatley for us, those kind of things are shown in the strictest of confidence to prevent leaks. Fortunately for us, a New York dealer decided to spill.

Nate Chandler of Van Bortel Chevrolet in Rochester attended a dealer meet hosted by Chevrolet in Las Vegas where the car was allegedly previewed. Chandler posted on the Corvette Forum, as well as his own Facebook page, saying that dealers were shown two teaser shots of the new car. One of the images, a profile shot, 'definitely looked mid-engined' according to Chandler, adding that the car had a short, Lotus-like bonnet, and a front end similar to the new C7 Corvette ZR1.

A potential debut at next year's Detroit auto show has been mooted, ahead of it arriving in showrooms in 2020, but nothing has been confirmed yet.

General Motors recently spent nearly half a billion pounds on upgrading the Corvette factory in Bowling Green, Kentucky, with public tours of the facility on hold until January next year, fuelling speculation that the new, different 'vette is one the way.

Gallery: Mid-engine Corvette prototype