Major Car Magazines Feature 2010 Grand Sport Corvette on Covers!
Corvette’s 2010 Grand Sport is the reanimation of what is arguably Chevrolet’s most exotic Corvette namesake.
by K. Scott Teeters
Have you noticed the extensive coverage of the new 2010 Grand Sport? And it seems that the reanimation of what is arguably Chevrolet’s most exotic Corvette namesake has spurred new interest in the original ‘63 Grand Sport as well. I thought it would be fun to take an over view of the automotive press’ take on the new Vette. Generally, everyone was more than impressed, especially when you factor in the $57,310 price tag and it’s only a few ticks slower than the $73,000-ish Z06. Nothing against the Z06. To me, the Z06 is what an L-88 might have been like with a little more development for the street.
__________________________________________________________________ Car & Driver – November ‘09: In the story, “Street Cars Named Desire” C&D pitted the new Grand Sport against the mean-looking Ford Shelby GT500. It was kind of a mismatch. While the Shelby has 540-horsepower (104-HP more than the GS), the car weighs 559-pounds MORE than the GS Vette! It’s as if the Shelby is hauling around a big-block engine in the trunk. Needless to say, the grand Sport slammed the Shelby on the road course. The Mustang is neat-looking, but why did they make it SO big? Same with the Dodge Challenger (which weighs around 4,300-lbs), it’s HUGE! These aren’t “pony cars,” they’re “moose cars.” Lucky for them, tires, horsepower, and torque are easy picking these days. The GS Corvette cost $7,545 more than the Shelby.
Motor Trend – November ‘09: In the story, “A Grand Design” MT takes their shot in the subtitle by stating, “The Corvette team Cuts And Pastes Up An Awesome New Model From Existing Parts.” “Cut and paste”? Geez, guys. I get what you’re saying, but these are some pretty damn good parts to be pasteing with. <– Just having a little fun MT. They made an interesting distinction about the LS3 engines in the GS. It seems that convertible GS cars get the “machine-built” engines, while the manual GS cars get the hand-balanced, manual assembled engines. The story explains that the Corvette engineers admitted that the hand assembled and balanced engines from Wixom “might” skew a little towards the high side of the tolerance range of output. So if you want the edge in your GS, get the manual car. MT’s demo GS ran the 1/4-mile in just 12.2-seconds at 117-mph. That’s about where Duntov was back in ‘69 with his white ZL-1 mule Corvette that was setup like a racer. Also, manual cars get the trick dry-sump oil system.
Corvette Magazine – #53 December ‘09: In the story titled, “What’s in a Name’” CM covers all the standard detail points. Corvette Chief Engineer, Tadge Jeuchter explained that the GS was their response from customers that like the aggressive looks of the Z06, but 437-horsepower is all they’ll ever need. Plus, customers said they wanted the Z06 looks with an automatic and in the roadster layout. After spending time with the GS, they concluded that the car makes an excellent everyday-track car. The car is very user friendly with plenty of grunt, suspension, and tires. They also point out that the collector crowd probably won’t be happy because the GS option is available on the coupe and roadster in all available colors. With a wide color pallet and lots of extras and trim packages, we are bound to see some lovely-looking Grand Sport Corvettes in the years to come.
Corvette Magazine Article – Return of the Legend Road & Track – November ‘09: In the story titled, “We race the newest Corvette!” R&T introduces us to four-time Ladies National Champion SCCA Solo II auto crosser, Karen Rafferty. This gal is a pro and I sensed that the R&T guys were a wee bit intimidated. A car like the new GS is MADE for gymkhana and autocross racing. Rafferty threw down a 58-second track time while the R&T guy, Shaun Bailey squashed a lot of cones and was in the 60-second range (61 to 69-mph?) All he needed was some more practice. While Rafferty just kept clicking off 58-second runs, Bailey managed a 57-seconds on his last run. Ah! “maleness” has been preserved!
From a performance point, Bailey reported that the GS performed perfectly and produced track time that were very close to the Z06 cars. He also dropped the notion of Chevrolet fitting some ZL-1 parts into the Z06 package. Hint-hint. VETTE Magazine – September ‘09: VETTE did a nice presentation of the ‘10 Grand Sport. In the Currents” section they presented a delicious, red GS convertible wearing silver front fender hash marks. NICE! Then they ran a feature story titled, “Surprise Gift,” Walt Thurn delivers a nice report of the National Corvette Museum Birthday Bash where the ‘10 grand Sport was debuted. Walt managed to get plant engineer to provide a blast around the back roads in a GS. Yea, driving with one finger.
Journalists and road testers would have to wait a while for their own experience behind the wheel of the GS. VETTE Magazine – October ‘09: The big “how much?” question was finally answered. The official price to own a piece of the Grand Sport Legend would be $55,720 for the coupe and $59,530 for the convertible. The also pointed out that the car has an EPA gas-mileage rating of 26-MPG on the highway. That’s more than DOUBLE what the old 427 big-blocks used to get! Way back then, who-da-thunk! In the same issue, VETTE kicked off a multi-part series by Walt Thurn titled, “The Story Behind The Original Grand Sports.” The article has lots of vintage photos, as well as two of the original five cars, as they look today.
And in the same issue, for lovers of the original Grand Sport Corvettes, there’s a most unusual art print by automotive artist, Michael Irvine that features the George Winterstein GS Roadster from the top view. VERY NICE! You can see more of Irvine’s excellent work at: http://michaelirvine.com/automotivefineart VETTE Magazine –
November ‘09: Part 2 of Walt Thurn’s Grand Sport history article is titled, “Grand Designs – Sticking It To The Cobras.” The story focuses on Grand Sport Chassis No. 004, the metallic blue car #3 with the orange and white center stripe. This car is alive and well, restored to it’s ‘64 12 Hours of Sebring race livery. The restored Grand Sport was completed just in time for the Amelia Island Concours Grand Sport Reunion where all five Grand Sports were together for the first time on one place!
Illustrated Corvette Series No. 150 “Three Generations of Grand Sport Corvettes!” as seen in the December issue of VETTE Magazine
VETTE Magazine – December ‘09: In this issue, my monthly column, “The Illustrated Corvette Series” by K. Scott teeters has a milestone – No. 150. I offered editor Jay Heath to make No. 150 a color 2-page spread, instead of my usual one-page black & white column. Jay sweetened the deal by making No. 150 a center spread and including my press release for the giclee print version of the layout. It’s always an honor to get the center spread position.
2010 National Corvette Museum Grand Sport Corvette
In the “Currents” section the NCM Corvette Grand Sport coupe was shown. The black, red, and white color design was chose to coincide with the NCM logo colors. Designed by Kirk Bennion, the over the hood, roof, and deck stripe embodies the true passion of competition with the JAKE skull graphic ghosted on the hood. Pretty cool I think this is an excellent example of the kinds of Grand Sport Corvette we’ll be seeing in the next few years. In closing, I’d like to say, “BRAVO!” to the Corvette product planners and designers for coming up with a package that is awesome to look at, has spectacular performance at a more than fair price in the sports car arena. Grand Sports ROCK! – K. Scott Teeters
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Add Your Two Cents:
What do you think?
Did the GM Corvette engineers and players do the Grand Sport name justice with the 2010 version?
What could have been done differently/better?
Are you buying a 2010 Grand Sport or have you bought one?