The new C8 Chevy Corvette is the first time the production sports car has had a mid-engine layout. Despite over 60 years of waiting for it, its looks have been remarkably polarizing. But how would it have looked if it were still a front-engine car?
I’m still very conflicted over the C8's design. I don’t understand the double edge that runs along the front of the car, nor the over-thought boomerang engine intake down the side, nor the choice to go for nearly perfect squares for the rear vents on the backside treatment. If you took away the lower “pinched” edge of the doors down the side—which don’t even feed into the intakes like you’d think they were meant to—and got rid of the boomerang altogether, I think it would drastically shift the attitude and presence of the car.
But this is Chevy’s first mid-engine Corvette, and I’m sure there was more focus on getting the engineering right out the door, and maybe the looks will grow on me. But what if it wasn’t the first mid-engine production Corvette? What if it was still just a front-engine sports car? Would that look better?
From this fairly straightforward render from YouTube car designer The Sketch Monkey, I have no doubt the C8 would have been prettier on the eyes with the engine in front of the driver:
It goes from looking like a layer cake that’s been sat on to something long, sleek and somehow more natural. It’s pretty close to the C7 still, maybe too close, but it’s definitely an improvement.
I’m not saying I want the Corvette to go back to being front-engine. I just think Chevy struggled with designing a mid-engine car this time around (despite doing a good job on the Fiero), especially with how easy the C8's lines work on a front-engine bodystyle. Maybe the refresh will save it for me.