(from GM Press Release) It all
started with a roadster. The thrill of open-air motoring was a part of
the original allure when the Chevrolet Corvette was born in 1953. Now
the sixth-generation 2005 Corvette Convertible arrives, bringing serious
performance and thoughtful refinement to the fun of driving a roadster.
The sixth-generation of the Corvette
legacy begins with the 2005 edition, available in Coupe and Convertible
models. Featuring dramatic upgrades throughout, a new 400-horsepower,
6.0-liter V-8 engine, and dynamic new styling, the sixth-generation
Corvette brings more power, passion and precision to America’s
Production of the 2005 Corvette
Convertible begins in fall 2004, slightly after the Coupe begins
production in late summer. The 2005 Corvette will be available for sale
in the U.S. in late summer, with sales in Europe scheduled to begin in
“We designed the Corvette from the outset
as an open car, so there’s no compromise in ride, handling and
performance for the Convertible compared to the Coupe,” said Dave Hill,
chief engineer for the Corvette and vehicle line executive for GM
Performance Cars. “This sixth-generation Convertible is a large step
forward, featuring greatly improved function, appearance and quietness.”
The sixth-generation Corvette Convertible
features an optional power-operated soft top, a feature that last
appeared on the car in 1962. The power top features a single-button
control and completes its cycle in 18 seconds. The top is designed and
manufactured in partnership between GM and Car Top Systems, Gmbh,
experts who’ve contributed to some of the world’s most celebrated open
cars. An easy-to-operate manual top remains standard.
The convertible top for the
sixth-generation Corvette reflects great attention to detail to net
improvements in aesthetics, aerodynamics and utility. In both its manual
and power versions, the canvas soft top is available in three colors:
Black, Beige and Grey. In its closed position, the canvas top has a
smoother, more contoured appearance that conceals the underlying
structure better than traditional soft tops. In addition to being more
pleasing to the eye, this also helps preserve the outstanding
aerodynamic characteristics designed into the sixth-generation Corvette.
“We sweated the details to ensure that
the Convertible driver has all the performance of the Coupe, with
surprising quietness and excellent storage capability for a roadster,
top-up or top-down,” Hill said.
Indexing side glass, a feature normally
reserved for higher-priced luxury cars, helps better seal the cabin from
wind noise. The Corvette’s new structure, including a new aluminum
windshield frame, was designed using extensive computer airflow models
to improve top-down quietness – especially for noise frequencies in the
range of passenger conversations. The top material itself is made of a
thick fabric called Twillfast, constructed in five layers for strong
durability and insulation.
In addition to the new power top, several
more details combine to make the convertible much more pleasing to
drive, especially for long trips. A bulkhead has been added to better
contain small items in the trunk and enable the addition of a new
storage area behind each seat. The power top occupies no more space than
the manual version, preserving maximum trunk space in both versions.
Rear visibility is improved with a glass backlight that is 18.5 percent
larger than the 2004 version. Like its predecessor, the backlight has a
standard rear defogger.
In an era in which most vehicles seem to
grow ever more bulky, the sixth-generation Corvette achieves lower
vehicle weight, even with the addition of numerous features new to the
marque. The Convertible is no exception, with a base curb weight of
3,199 pounds (1,451 kg), 49 pounds (22 kg) less than the 2004 model. The
manual top mechanism utilizes thin-wall castings for a weight savings of
8.6 pounds (3.9 kg.) The optional power top mechanism adds just 14
pounds (6.4 kg.) to the car’s weight.
Every option available on the Coupe can
be had on the Convertible, including features new to the Corvette such
as OnStar, XM Satellite Radio and DVD-Navigation. Likewise, all three
suspension choices – Corvette Standard Suspension, Magnetic Selective
Ride Control, and the new Z51 Performance Package – are available on the
The sixth-generation Corvette not only
replaces the outgoing C5 Corvette (1997-2004), but also creates a 21st
century Corvette that thrills the legions of traditional loyalists and
captures the imagination of a new generation of performance enthusiasts.
The formula from the C5 era remains: Extremely high performance
capabilities in a car that offers great style, value and quality, with
surprising comfort for daily driving. The new Corvette takes that
foundation and reaches beyond with dramatic increases in performance and
refinement, wrapped in a passionate new design.
Thanks to an all-new chassis, strong and
lightweight body structure and the new 400-horsepower LS2 engine, the
2005 Corvette again raises the bar for performance, with outstanding
handling and surprising ride quality. Equipped with the new Z51
Performance Package, the 2005 Corvette (in both Coupe and Convertible
body styles) nearly matches the track performance of today’s widely
respected Corvette Z06 model.
The sixth-generation Corvette blends its
technical sophistication with expressive style. Five inches shorter than
the C5, the 2005 Corvette cuts a tighter, more taut profile – with
virtually no loss of usable space. More than just visual, the new
dimensions make the car more agile and “toss-able,” with upgrades in
handling, acceleration and braking. At 0.28 coefficient of drag, the
sixth-generation car is the most aerodynamically efficient Corvette ever
and has enhanced anti-lift characteristics that enable improved
high-speed stability and confidence.