Next Generation Corvette (C8) May Use Hybrid Powertrain

Insider news about GM leaked today indicates the next generation of Corvette (termed C8), may has an option of hybrid powertrain.

We all know that the biggest bottleneck of the internal combustion engine is its torque delivery. No matter how flat the torque curve it can achieve, it will never match the level that maximum torque at zero rpm, which is a special characteristic of the electric motor.

Therefore, adding an electric motor into the powertrain not only can enhance the car’s mpg, but most importantly it will significantly benefit the car’s acceleration performance. With some of the current or future sports cars that are/will have hybrid power (Porsche 918 Spyder, and McLaren said all its cars will be hybrid within 10 years), it is clear that the Corvette need this new technology to keep its performance on par with its competitors.

Hybrid powertrain also solves another big issue for sports car: you can safely use turbocharging without worrying about the turbo lag. That is because the electric motor can supply instant maximum torque at any time. So whenever the internal combustion engine’s turbo lag presents, it can be completely masked out/compensated by the electric motor. For car manufactures, it also saves them a ton of R&D money for dealing with minimizing turbo lag in the turbo engine, because turbo lag is not an issue any more. Even though the current Corvette does not use turbocharging (only supercharging on some models), it can achieve a much higher output by using turbocharging, in the future.

For this news about C8 Corvette, Mark Reuss, EVP of GM Global Product Development, confirmed to media today that GM is considering the hybrid variant, but the plan is not finalized yet.

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