• Production of the 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray began at General Motors’ Bowling Green plant this week. 
  • The new Corvette marks several firsts for the iconic American sports car. 
  • Rated at 495 horsepower, the 2020 Corvette Stingray is the most powerful base Corvette ever produced. 
  • It’s also the first mid-engined production Corvette, and the first without a manual option. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

After a delay blamed on the United Auto Workers strike late last year, Chevrolet began manufacturing the 2020 Chevrolet Corvette this week at General Motors’ plant in Bowling Green, Kentucky. The first new model — which sold for $3 million at a charity auction last month — rolled off the production line on February 3. 

The 2020 Corvette Stingray — the eighth generation of the sports car — is the first full redesign of the car since the C7 was unveiled in 2013. The new mid-engined model was officially announced midway through 2019, and we’ve been eagerly awaiting the first production models ever since. 

The C8 Corvette represents several firsts for the iconic sports car, some of which have been in the works for decades. Scroll down to learn what makes the latest ‘Vette so special. 

Cars: Production of the 2020 Corvette, the first model year of the C8 generation, began on February 3.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: The all-black ‘Vette with Chevrolet’s Z51 performance package — pictured above — already sold for $3 million at a charity auction last month.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Source: General Motors

Cars: But what makes the new C8 Corvette so special?

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: For one, it’s the first Corvette in history to have its engine in the middle, instead of up front.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: The new mid-engine layout places the C8 Corvette in the same class as supercars from Lamborghini, Ferrari, and McLaren, but it comes with an MSRP far below those automakers’ price points.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: Putting the engine behind the seats gives the car a more optimal weight distribution and allows for better handling and traction.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: Part of what makes the new Corvette such a sensation is the fact that Chevy has teased mid-engined Corvette prototypes for decades.

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CERV II, a 1964 mid-engined Chevrolet prototype.

Chevrolet


Cars: Across several model generations, a mid-engined Corvette variant has supposedly been right around the corner, and now it’s finally here.

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The 1990 CERV III, another mid-engined prototype.

Chevrolet


Cars: The affordable mid-engined sports car isn’t a totally new phenomenon — take the Toyota MR2, Lotus Elise, or Porsche Boxster, for example — but mid-engine layouts have generally been reserved for exotic nameplates with six-figure MSRPs.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: Starting at just $59,995, the 2020 Corvette brings supercar-like performance and engineering to the masses.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: Equipped with a 6.2-liter, naturally aspirated V8 rated at 495 horsepower, the 2020 Stingray trim is the most powerful base Corvette ever.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: Chevy says the new Corvette tops out at 194 mph in its base trim.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: With the optional performance package, the 2020 Corvette posts a 0-60 time of 2.9 seconds and a quarter-mile time of 11.2 seconds, putting it in the ballpark of many more expensive supercars.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: The new C8 Corvette is also the first generation of the legendary sports car not to offer a manual transmission.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: For 2020, America’s sports car receives a dual-clutch automatic.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: That’s at least partially due to dwindling consumer demand for stick-shift cars.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Cars: When the last generation of the Corvette launched in 2014, sales were roughly split between manual and automatic versions. Lately, only one in five C7s sold sports a manual gearbox.

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The 2018 Chevrolet Corvette.

Chevrolet


Source: Car and Driver

Cars: While all previous Corvettes have offered a convertible version, the 2020 ‘Vette is the first with a retractable hardtop.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Source: Motor Trend

Cars: The Stingray moniker harkens all the way back to the C2 Corvette, produced from 1963 to 1967, but the 2020 Corvette C8 represents a huge leap forward for America’s sports car.

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The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.

Chevrolet


Source: Car and Driver

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