Monday, August 8, 2011

2009 Corvette Stingray Concept

The Past Meets the Future
Text by David W. Temple
Photos by General Motors

Corvette enthusiasts got a real treat in the form of the 2009 Stingray Concept, also known as the Corvette Centennial. It was unveiled to the public at the Chicago Auto Show. Unlike most concept cars, this one starred in a major motion picture, Transfomers: Revenge of the Fallen, as did another GM show car, the Camaro Bumblebee, in the earlier Transformers movie. The design of the Stingray was derived from the original 1959 Stingray race car as well as the 1963 “split window” coupe and other generations of the sports car. The end result was a car with futuristic styling; clearly that was the intent of those involved in the project. Vice president of GM Global Design, Ed Welburn, said the car “represents an exercise in exploration for the Corvette. By giving my creative team the freedom to design no-holds-barred vision concepts, it helps them push boundaries and look at projects from different perspectives.”
The Corvette Stingray Concept was developed as an internal design challenge for GM’s “Studio X” to combine classic Corvette cues with surprisingly high-tech features, modern materials, and a striking new appearance. The car is well-appointed with a clamshell hood, scissor-style doors, ergonomic seats, rear-view camera with night vision enhancement, and a high performance hybrid drive. Interactive touch controls allow the driver to customize the power and efficiency of his or her ride and share it with friends via the in-car camera system and advanced telemetrics.
Despite all the high-tech accoutrements, the Stingray is a non-runner.
Ed Welburn seemed to downplay the car’s influence on the C7 Corvette saying the Stingray was “purely a concept.” The C7 is expected to debut for the 2013 model year.

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