Chevrolet has introduced the Chevrolet Corvette E-Ray, a hybrid variant of its iconic sports car. This new E-Ray is unique among sports cars in that it’s not a plug-in hybrid, and it doesn’t feature multiple electric motors. Instead, it utilizes a simple, yet effective, hybrid powertrain that’s split by axles. At the rear, it maintains the same LT2 pushrod ‘small-block’ V8 engine as the regular Stingray, driving the rear wheels through an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission. In the front, there’s a compact AC electric motor with 120kW and up to 170Nm of torque. This motor is powered by a small 1.9kWh battery pack situated in the tunnel between the seats.
This hybrid system is quite simple, but it adds only about 110kg of weight compared to the Stingray. Visually, the E-Ray features the widened bodywork of the range-topping Corvette Z06, with a 90mm increase to accommodate large tires. The rear tires on the E-Ray are said to be the largest fitted as standard on any passenger car. The E-Ray’s cabin closely resembles the regular Corvette C8’s interior. It also keeps the same ergonomic challenges as the standard car, including a high seating position and small, hard-to-see buttons that separate the driver and passenger.
While the E-Ray has an electric-only mode, it’s not particularly useful due to its low speed and limited range. The E-Ray focuses on performance, offering Tour, Sport, Track, and Weather modes, along with configurable My Mode and a Z setting for adjusting various chassis and powertrain settings on the fly. The combination of the V8 engine and the front electric motor delivers impressive performance and increased traction.
On the track, the E-Ray proves to be a formidable performer with good ride quality in Tour mode and precise handling in Sport or Track modes. The compact hybrid system’s weight doesn’t negatively impact the car’s overall dynamics. This electrified Corvette is marketed as an all-wheel-drive sports car suitable for regions with harsh winters. It offers a new level of performance and dynamic appeal, making it a highly anticipated addition to the European market.
|Attribute||Chevrolet Corvette E-Ray|
|Hybrid Type||Non-plug-in hybrid, single electric motor|
|Powertrain||V8 engine and electric motor|
|Engine||LT2 pushrod ‘small-block’ V8 engine|
|Electric Motor||AC electric motor (120kW, up to 170Nm)|
|Battery Pack||1.9kWh, located in the tunnel between the seats|
|Weight Difference||Approximately 110kg more compared to the Stingray|
|Bodywork||Wider bodywork, similar to Corvette Z06 with a 90mm increase|
|Tire Size||Rear: 345/25 R21, largest standard passenger car tires|
|Interior||Similar to the regular Corvette C8, small ergonomic challenges|
|Electric-Only Mode||Limited electric-only mode, mainly for stealthy neighborhood driving|
|Performance Modes||Tour, Sport, Track, Weather, My Mode, and Z setting for customization|
|Performance and Traction||Impressively quick with added traction; synthesized sound from the electric motor|
|On-Track Performance||Capable on the track, effective carbon-ceramic brakes, and high-speed capability|
|European Market Introduction||Highly anticipated addition to the European mar|
- Light on practicality penalties with its compact hybrid system
- Four-wheel drive positively influences handling
- Ample power and V8 charm
- The C8’s high driving position remains unresolved
- Limited electric-only driving
- Size and weight somewhat limit its ultimate dynamic appeal
The Chevrolet Corvette E-Ray introduces electrification to a legendary sports car, offering enhanced performance and a broader dynamic appeal without sacrificing the car’s iconic power and charm.