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The C7 Corvette will use a host of advanced technologies to boost power, fuel efficiency

The next generation of "America's Sports Car" will be officially unveiled on January 13, 2013 (although we're sure there will be leaks well before then). General Motors will no doubt make the vehicle lighter, faster, and provide it with a much-needed boost in interior fit/finish and materials quality.
 
But while we won't get a look at the finalized exterior of the C7 Corvette until January, GM is already spilling the beans on the heart of the vehicle: the new LT1 V8. Like most Corvettes that came before it (we'll leave out the DOHC ZR-1 from two decades ago), the C7 Corvette uses an OHV small block engine. But the LT1 is no ordinary OHV engine; it's been pumped full of the latest technological advances to boost power and fuel efficiency.

 
The LT1 makes use of direct injection, Active Fuel Management (AFM), and continuously variable valve timing. AFM is probably the most interesting addition to such a high performance vehicle like the Corvette. In this application, the 6.2-liter V8 fires up all cylinders when the driver is going crazy on the accelerator pedal. However, if the driver is gingerly driving around town or on the highway, the engine in effect shuts off half of the cylinders and operates as a 3.1-liter V4.

 
AFM will be critical in helping the base model Corvette achieve at least 26 mpg on the highway, which is a lofty number for such a performance-oriented machine.
 
When all is said and done, the new LT1 is good for 450hp and 450 lb-ft of torque. It will also allow the base Corvette to rocket to 60 mph in under four seconds.

 
“Our objective for the development of the all-new LT1 was to raise the bar for performance car engines,” said Mary Barra, SVP, global product development. “We feel that we have achieved that by delivering a true technological masterpiece that seamlessly integrates a suite of advanced technologies that can only be found on a handful of engines in the world.
 
With GM going "balls to the wall" on even the entry-level Corvette, we can't wait to see what they have in store for the Z06 and ZR1 models.

Sources: GM [1], [2]





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