NEW FOR 2009:
– New ZR1 model, 1SA convertible model
– 1SB convertible adds standard power top
– Standard wheel-mounted audio controls, variable steering ratio on all models
– Available Bluetooth hands-free connectivity
– Crossed-flags emblem features new bright surround
– Coupe and Z06 add standard power hatch pull-down
– Z06 adds 9.9-litre dry-sump oil system capacity, new "spider" design wheels in Sparkle Silver, Competition Gray or chrome, sill plates with logo, and colour-matched lower instrument panel and door panels on red and titanium interiors
– Exterior colours: Cyber Gray Metallic and Blade Silver Metallic added
– Interior colours: Dark Titanium and Ebony added
For 2009, the Chevrolet Corvette range expands with the 638-horsepower ZR1, along with a new 1SA convertible model that gives buyers a lower starting price. Other changes include a standard power top on the 1SB model, new standard features on all models, and on the Z06, an increase in the dry-sump oiling system from 7.5 to 9.9 litres, the same capacity as on the ZR1.
The Corvette comes with a choice of three engines: a 6.2-litre V8 in the coupe and convertible, a 7.0-litre V8 in the Z06, and supercharged 6.2-litre V8 in the ZR1. The coupe and convertible use a six-speed manual that can be optioned to a six-speed automatic with paddle shifters, while the Z06 and ZR1 use the six-speed manual exclusively.
Features on the coupe and convertible include 18-inch front and 19-inch rear alloy wheels, automatic dual-zone climate control, fog lights, xenon headlamps, heated mirrors with auto-dimming driver’s side, variable intermittent wipers, cruise control, driver information centre, auto-dimming rearview mirror, compass, leather-wrapped tilt wheel with audio controls, express-down windows, leather seats with six-way power driver’s adjustment, CD/MP3 stereo, XM satellite radio, keyless entry, automatic headlamps, pushbutton start, theft deterrent alarm, and OnStar. The coupe has a one-piece, body-colour removable roof panel that can be optioned to a transparent removable panel, while the convertible has a soft top with glass rear window and electric defogger.
The Z06 adds head-up display with track mode, perforated leather seats, performance exhaust, Z06-specific performance suspension, Brembo brakes with six-piston front and four-piston rear calipers and cross-drilled rotors, body-colour carbon fibre front fenders and floor panel, and safety restraint top tethers.
The ZR1 adds 19-inch front and 20-inch rear alloy wheels, computer-controlled active suspension system with adjustable shock absorbers, six-piston front and rear Brembo brakes, ZR1-specific performance suspension, body-colour carbon fibre raised hood with window, and visible carbon fibre roof, front splitter and rocker extensions.
Depending on the model, available options include 20-inch wheels, luggage cover, head-up display, power tilt and telescopic wheel, sport seats, navigation system and premium stereo.
Already a legendary sports car in its own right, thanks in part to the Z06, the Corvette moves even further up the ladder with the ZR1, which holds its own even among competition from Germany and Italy, but at a fraction of the price, with a top speed of 330 km/h. Collectors will also appreciate that the ZR1 models carry unique vehicle identification numbers (VINs) which indicate the build number of each vehicle as well as the fact that it is a genuine ZR1. But those who can’t move up to that price point needn’t worry; the regular coupe and convertible are still as much fun to drive as they ever were.