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Dear Chevy, Thank You!

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On: Thu, Mar 1, 2012 at 10:02AM | By: Lou Ruggieri

Dear Chevy, Thank You!

In case you haven't heard, Chevy has confirmed that 2013 will be the last model year for the venerable C6 Corvette. Although that is sad news for some of us who may not be able to purchase one new off the showroom floor, there is a silver lining to the story. No, we're not talking about the C7 -- who knows what's going to happen with that whole thing. What we are excited about is that Chevy is adding a 'new' model to their existing lineup of crossed-flagged wonders: The Corvette 427 convertible, and all we can say is, "Finally!" 

Now, don't go calling this 427 Corvette a Z06 convertible -- heavens no! Sure, the 427 runs the same hand-built, all-aluminum 7.0-liter LS7 small block engine pumping out the same 505 heart-racing horsepower but it’s not a ZO6 convertible. Sure, the 427 has a Carbon Fiber front splitter and side rockers that you can get on the ZO6 and ZR1 to help high-speed handling and it uses six-piston front/four piston rear calipers on 14-inch front/13.4-inch rear rotors that are cross-drilled and vented in just the same way as the ZO6, but again, don't call it a Z06 convertible. Sure, the vented hood and brake ducts on the side of the 427 look eerily like those on the Z06, and the transmission, clutch and rear gearing are all carbon copies of those found on the Z06, but the 427 is not a Z06 convertible.

Okay, we get it Chevy, the 427 isn't a Z06 convertible ... And to that we would like to respectfully say, "Who cares?!"

Since its debut on showroom floors back in 2006, we the people have asked, begged, and pleaded for an open air version of the big-boy Vette. Historically, that's what people have always wanted -- big engine, manual trans, and wind in their hair. That's it. No more, no less. Yet for some ridiculously inane reason Chevy and its wonderful engineers have protested against this concept over and over and over, claiming that the power of the 427 was simply too much for the Z06 to be anything but a hardtop. Not even a targa roof could be considered because the torque of the motor would simply rip the entire body to pieces and cause global catastrophe of Biblical proportions -- it would rain frogs, the earth would shake and the entire Milky Way galaxy would be reduced to nothing more than a handful of broken potato chips. At least, that's how they made it sound. Impossible they said (maybe not all that other stuff - it was so long ago). Yet, somehow, some way, on the 60th anniversary of the Corvette's entrance into the Chevy line up, they found a way!

Yes, some magical, mystical metal was found (Adamantium more likely than not) to keep the chassis of the Vette together for at least 36,000 miles while being powered by the venerable 427 motor. So either the maniacal ruler of Chevy engineers was overthrown and reason won out, or more than likely, the consumer demand was so great that finally someone with half a brain decided to just try it out and see if, in fact, putting a 427 in a convertible body would annihilate civilization as previously thought. As it turns out, it didn't, and we as a collective automotive-loving populace are much better off for it.

The only real question is, "What took so long?!" But, it is not proper to inspect the dental work of the equestrian variety -- or 505 of them in this case. Obviously the only stipulation the eternal obstinate engineers demanded was that of course, we can't call it a Z06 'vert. Fine! We would have gladly called it a Corvette Gila Monster, or maybe a Corvette Blue Plate Special, or a Corvette Teenage Mutant Ninja Roadster -- whatever! A Corvette convertible by any other name would still drive as sweet. But alas, we digress. Instead of lamenting on time wasted, we can and should simply say, "Hey, thanks for actually getting this puppy up and running (and not destroying the world in the process)." The only thing we ask is now that we see the convertible is possible, and we know the hardtop obviously works -- could we please work on that targa top? Don't worry, we promise not to call it a Z06 targa because, you know, that matters.

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