Even though the Corvette is now in its eighth generation, it's the first of its kind to be developed for right-hand-drive markets. Better late than never some would argue, and that wait is nearly over as Chevrolet has announced the C8 will go on sale in select European markets this autumn. Thankfully, UK is on that list, albeit more than a year since customer deliveries started in the US.
The Euro-spec Corvette will include the Z51 Performance Package as standard equipment (optional on the US-spec version). What that means is customers in the UK will get a lot of goodies from the get-go, including Brembo brakes with bigger rotors, an electronic limited-slip differential, a performance exhaust, and a shorter axle ratio. In addition, the Corvette sold here will boast an aero pack and Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres.
Gallery: 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray
Aside from performance-oriented features, the C8 coming to the UK will have a comprehensive list of amenities corresponding to the 2LT trim level available for its North American cousin. The kit included as standard varies from a head-up display and navigation system to a rearview camera and a 14-speaker Bose sound system. Heated and ventilated seats are also part of the deal, and so is a performance data recorder for those eager to track their sports cars.
The 2LT-based Corvette will be available for deliveries in early 2022, but if you want the naturally aspirated machine sooner, you'll have to step up to the Launch Edition. Based on the 3LT trim, it gets several carbon exterior accents combined with interior tweaks like Nappa leather upholstery and microfiber velour for the steering wheel and seat surfaces. To sweeten the deal, Chevrolet Europe throws in the Magnetic Ride Control 4.0 suspension system.
The Launch Edition will arrive at showrooms this October and is going to set you back £81,700 for the coupe finished in Arctic White. For unlimited headroom, the convertible will start at £87,110 and will come painted in Torch Red. For an extra £1,580, an optional front suspension lift system will raise the car's nose by 50 mm.
And now for the bad news. To be fully homologated for Europe, the engineers had to fit a gasoline particulate filter. That means the petrol 6.2-liter V8 produces 475 horsepower and 613 Newton-meters (452 pound-feet) of torque. For the sake of comparison, the US-spec Corvette Z51 offers 495 bhp and 637 Nm (470 lb-ft), so Europeans are missing out on 20 bhp and 24 Nm (18 lb-ft). That's still enough for a 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) in three and a half seconds and a top speed of 184 mph (296 km/h).
Each body style will be offered in seven additional exterior/interior color combinations for an extra £1,750.