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Chevrolet SPEED -- The Corvette C8's little MR sibling


Chevrolet SPEED -- The Corvette C8's little MR sibling  

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Chevrolet Speed

The Chevrolet Speed is built on the AMR (Affordable Mid-engine Rear-drive) Platform to be an affordable sibling to the Corvette that appeals to buyers in their 20s and 30s. It is designed around the 3-3-3 paradigm calling for a 300 hp car, weighing 3,000 lbs and costing 30,000 dollars. The modestly sized car features an architecture that avoids using expensive materials such as aluminum, magnesium or carbon composites, while utilizing an all-strut suspension design. Power is provided by a 2.7L turbocharged Inline-4 from the Silverado Pickup and the high torque rating dual-clutch transaxle is sourced from Getrag. The entire powertrain and its cooling system are contained in the engine compartment behind the occupants with the radiator positioned horizontally above and behind the engine, while side scoops feed air into the compartment. There is a 6.6 cu-ft trunk under the engine compartment cover but no front storage compartment with electric HVAC and steering taking up the space under the hood. The cabin is an exercise in spartan simplicity with no instrument cluster, buttons or knobs; just a Heads-Up-Display and a 12” LCD multi-function touch screen in the center console. Seat

adjustments are manual and a simple 5-speaker BOSE stereo system rounds out the amenities. A Premium Performance Package adds a 360° camera system, leather upholstery, 18” wheels, Magnetic Ride Control and a helical limited slip differential for $6,000. A 420 hp Chevrolet Speed SS is expected to follow featuring a 420 hp version of the 2.7L engine, air-to-water intercooling, bigger brakes and Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires.

FICTION

Chevy_Speed.jpg

Edited by dwightlooi
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I like it but they better be ready to say "bye-bye" to the Camaro if they went this route. 

It's an interesting idea but is it financially feasible at 30k to make a mid-engine sports car? 

I would almost assume there would be a lesser powerful base engine and their 2.0T would suffice for the weight. It would be amazing if they'd do a manual transmission(even if it were an UP charge) because this would be in Miata territory and driver engagement would be front and center, I'd assume. 

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GM and Chevrolet is already, kinda saying goodbye to the Camaro. Maybe.  No news on what will happen to the nameplate, platform, replacement/successor, refreshes...

Chevrolet has been very very silent on what happens to the Camaro after 2023.  

Neither saying Camaro will end completely nor saying it will continue on.  Neither saying the platform will end nor getting an update.  Neither saying Camaro will live on, on another platform,  or go fully EV,  or becoming a sport CUV or becoming the Mach-E competitor named the Camaro E-ROC  (electric race of champions)...

With that being said.....

Had Tadge Juechter been interested in creating  the Corvette  into a brand of its own, because he is really not wanting to go into that direction, this would have been a FANTASTIC idea...as a Corvette model.

As another sports car sold under the Chevrolet name plate under Corvette, and beside or replacing Camaro...it ain t gonnna fly. The market wont support this. The Camaro has already died before.  GM sports cars just under the Corvette have died... The Firebird has died. The Solstice that kinda tried to replace the Firebird died. The mid-engined Fiero that was to replace the Firebird but was sold alongside the Firebird has died.  

We could go into the reasons why those died (shoddy engineering choices blah blah blah...), but at the same time, the market then also supported many other sports cars. The Fiero, Firebird, had competitors with the Supras and 300ZX TTs, and Celicas, and MR2s and Mitsu 3000GTs/Dodge Stealths and Mitsu Eclipses/Eagle Talons...so even if GM/Pontiac flopped the marketing and engineering of their sports cars, the market supported all the other entries.  But then...the market stopped with those too...

And alas, the only one to survive was the Mustang...which was in grave danger in  disappearing too at one time... 

The Challenger had died twice before, before being resurrected again to great success. But lets look at that scenario. 

The Challenger died the 1st time because of the gasoline crisis and insurance hikes on fast 2 door coupes (muscle cars) and  folks couldnt afford them any more. Also, big cubed cars were shunned upon.  Then it became a god awful Japanese badge engineered mess of a thing. But MOPAR got smart and done the Stealth and Eclipse. Then it returned...AS A MUSCLE CAR again.

This mid-engined idea is FAR from being a muscle car. It seems to me that a 2 door sporty coupe needs to have muscle car intentions to succeed... The Camaro fails because its persona may be muscle car, but its execution is not. When it was on the Zeta platform, the interior visibility was a mess, but because it was new again, it was a success. Then it to the fantastic Alpha platform, and although its a great sports car, its NOT a Camaro...  Visibility issues aside, there is another problem.  The exterior design is OLD OLD OLD now.  The movie transformers came out 3 years BEFORE the car came out. 2007 for the movie and  2010 Going by THAT...the exterior look of this "new" Camaro is already 13 years old and a decade old with the car itself. The Camaro needs a NEW look...like NOW....

But...if we look at the Challenger, which as an exterior LOOK is concerned, is just as old...but MOPAR has INVESTED it MARKETABILITY and MADE the Challenger COOL to be what its supposed to be...a MUSCLE CAR. 

Ford has done the same thing to the Mustang.  The Mustang has been COOL to be a PONY CAR again since 2005. Changed the look of the Mustang with AWESOME refreshes, like the Challenger, changed the platform and the LOOK of the Mustang, changed its persona in becoming more European in flavour, but succeeding in keeping its AMERICAN MUSCLE CAR presence...

This Chevy Speed is, to me at least, NOT what the doctor ordered for Chevrolet at this point in time. The Camaro could STILL live on as its numbers as is are NOT THAT BAD.  

Problems for the Camaro are stale.  Retro looks from a1969 model has become passé and cliché.  Crap visibility. Mustang on both accounts is a tad better and the Challenger is better still.   Then finally, marketing has to improve for not only the Camaro, but for Chevrolet and General Motors in the grand scheme of things.

The Chevy Speed as presented, is not a muscle car. 2 door American coupes need to be muscle cars is what I think the market is calling for.  And the Camaro sales are really not that bad actually...in a market world of CUVs...

The Chevy Speed  should be tocthe M-E Corvette as was the Ferrari Dino to the bigger Ferraris from the 1960s. A cheaper alternative... to the Corvette brand had Tadge been interested in making Corvette a brand on its own. As a model under the Corvette beside the Camaro or replacing it wont work.  

As a Corvette brand on its own. I think Corvette could succeed this way. In the short term. Long term...well Porsche right now may be in a little bit of a pickle as 20 some odd years of expanding into the SUV world,  their CURRENT fans know Porsche MORE for Macans, Cayennes and 4 door sedans then they are for what made them what they are b y getting these new fans into their showrooms in the first place.

Great rant?

Bad rant?

Im sick and I havent talked cars for awhile. Give me a break...  :) 

 

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18 hours ago, oldshurst442 said:

GM and Chevrolet is already, kinda saying goodbye to the Camaro. Maybe.  No news on what will happen to the nameplate, platform, replacement/successor, refreshes...

Chevrolet has been very very silent on what happens to the Camaro after 2023.  

 

 

Maybe the Camaro name will reappear as a crossover coupe, based on Blazer...

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Three things...

(1) There is no reason to believe that the Camaro is going anywhere. It is not expensive to keep making it on the same platform with refreshed sheetmetal. Sales are enough to sustain production. Heck, sales are higher than all of GM's EVs combined.

(2) The SPEED is not really in the same segment. It is a 2-seat MR coupe; not a muscle car. Mid-engine doesn't really cost anything apart from a new platform and in many cases a new platform doesn't cost much if it is kept simple (like the Kappa). Anyone looking for a muscle car is not going to look at the SPEED or vice versa. The point is that Muscle car people are not really C8 Corvette people either and there needs to be an entry level car that brings people to the Vette.

(3) I know yoiu gays do not want to hear thus. But I think GM should have a Caddy version of the C8 instead of any Z06, ZR1 or whatever upgraded variants. What's the point in injecting Chevy with super-super car credentials? Caddy can you that in spades. Besides, obody is going to complain when the price tag breaches $100K when it's a caddy.

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12 minutes ago, dwightlooi said:

 

(3) I know you guys do not want to hear this. But I think GM should have a Caddy version of the C8 instead of any Z06, ZR1 or whatever upgraded variants. What's the point in injecting Chevy with super-super car credentials? Caddy can you that in spades. Besides, obody is going to complain when the price tag breaches $100K when it's a caddy.

Corvette has a history of upgraded performance variations, though....Z06, Grand Sport, ZR1...  Cadillac needs to focus on luxury sedans and SUVs. 

Edited by Robert Hall
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11 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

Could you imagine what the Camaro sales would drop to if Chevrolet made another 30-50k sports car? 

Not really. It doesn't work like that. The pie isn't "Chevy Sports car Buyers" and how to split it between a Camaro and a Speed. The pie has always been "$30~50K sports car buyer" and how to split it between all the relevant cars from every manufacturer. I'll be more worried for the Toyota/Subaru FT86, Toyota Supra, BMW M240i, etc. than I'll be for the Camaro or the Dodge Challenger. If GM wants market share they have to go steal it from the other gyus. The Camaro isn;t stealing anything except from maybe the Ford Mustang and Dodge Challenger.

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I like the Speed idea...it's like a modern MR2 or Fiero...the small, affordable mid engined sports car...different niche than the Camaro. 

Edited by Robert Hall
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7 minutes ago, dwightlooi said:

Not really. It doesn't work like that. The pie isn't "Chevy Sports car Buyers" and how to split it between a Camaro and a Speed. The pie has always been "$30~50K sports car buyer" and how to split it between all the relevant cars from every manufacturer. I'll be more worried for the Toyota/Subaru FT86, Toyota Supra, BMW M240i, etc. than I'll be for the Camaro or the Dodge Challenger. If GM wants market share they have to go steal it from the other gyus. The Camaro isn;t stealing anything except from maybe the Ford Mustang and Dodge Challenger.

Yeah, I know. But, they'll both be sitting next to each other and likely test drove together and one will be a brand new sports car that you can see out of and the other would theoretically be 10 years old with no outward vision. 

Right now, the Camaro isn't stealing from the Challenger or Mustang either. 

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1 hour ago, dwightlooi said:

(3) I know yoiu gays do not want to hear thus. But I think GM should have a Caddy version of the C8 instead of any Z06, ZR1 or whatever upgraded variants. What's the point in injecting Chevy with super-super car credentials? Caddy can you that in spades. Besides, obody is going to complain when the price tag breaches $100K when it's a caddy.

I really like and think Cadillac should have a 2 door performance auto. Yet with that said, right now, I would like Cadillac to get a full Luxury focused Car / SUV / CUV portfolio before attempting to do another V edition 2 door auto. Once they get a proper full depth auto portfolio, then I would say yes to them moving into a Performance Halo auto.

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4 minutes ago, dfelt said:

I really like and think Cadillac should have a 2 door performance auto. Yet with that said, right now, I would like Cadillac to get a full Luxury focused Car / SUV / CUV portfolio before attempting to do another V edition 2 door auto. Once they get a proper full depth auto portfolio, then I would say yes to them moving into a Performance Halo auto.

I'd like to see Cadillac have a large RWD Blackwing V8 luxury performance 2dr coupe...like a production version of the Elmiraj.... leave the mid engined sportscar niche to Corvette. 

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9 hours ago, Robert Hall said:

Maybe the Camaro name will reappear as a crossover coupe, based on Blazer...

I personally think Chevy will kill the Camaro as is, but will re-invent it as an EV crossover coupe thingy (like you said...but EV) to compete with the Mustang Mach-E.  As I posted above, I wasnt trolling with the E-ROC comment.  Electric Racing of Champions instead of IROC.

8 hours ago, dwightlooi said:

There is no reason to believe that the Camaro is going anywhere.

There is also no reason to believe its staying either...    GM has been....silent on the future of Camaro after 2023.  That means anything really. But its more of a negative to be silent than a positive. 

8 hours ago, dwightlooi said:

It is not expensive to keep making it on the same platform with refreshed sheetmetal. Sales are enough to sustain production. Heck, sales are higher than all of GM's EVs combined.

Very very true...

However. This is GENERAL MOTORS we are talking about!!!

GM has already killed the F-Body twins with similar sales in 2002 as the sales that the Alpha platform ATS and Camaro generated.   And...in 2002...SUVs were all the rage which was a major reason for canceling the F-Body and killing the Camaro/Firebird.  In 2020,  SUVs and CUVs have become the bread and butter products and EVs have somewhat become all the rage and Camaro is neither.   Mizz Barra DID say GM was going full on electric in 2023 and beyond.   This is why I have stated that Camaro will probably be an EV CUV to rival the Mustang Mach-E.  Or if not a CUV, then an EV coupe the Camaro will become.  I have strong suspicions. 

 

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16 minutes ago, oldshurst442 said:

I personally think Chevy will kill the Camaro as is, but will re-invent it as an EV crossover coupe thingy (like you said...but EV) to compete with the Mustang Mach-E.  As I posted above, I wasnt trolling with the E-ROC comment.  Electric Racing of Champions instead of IROC.

There is also no reason to believe its staying either...    GM has been....silent on the future of Camaro after 2023.  That means anything really. But its more of a negative to be silent than a positive. 

Very very true...

However. This is GENERAL MOTORS we are talking about!!!

GM has already killed the F-Body twins with similar sales in 2002 as the sales that the Alpha platform ATS and Camaro generated.   And...in 2002...SUVs were all the rage which was a major reason for canceling the F-Body and killing the Camaro/Firebird.  In 2020,  SUVs and CUVs have become the bread and butter products and EVs have somewhat become all the rage and Camaro is neither.   Mizz Barra DID say GM was going full on electric in 2023 and beyond.   This is why I have stated that Camaro will probably be an EV CUV to rival the Mustang Mach-E.  Or if not a CUV, then an EV coupe the Camaro will become.  I have strong suspicions. 

 

GM has also stated while ICE auto's will be here through 2030, they have clearly stated that they will move to retire ICE as they bring out EV equals. As such, I could easily see an E-ROC replacing the Z28 sooner than later and agree with you that I can see the ICE Camaro dead after 2023. At most like Dwight says, could do minor refreshes letting the current model limp along till full replaced by EV versions.

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10 hours ago, dwightlooi said:

The SPEED is not really in the same segment. It is a 2-seat MR coupe; not a muscle car.

True.  But (affordable)sports cars lately...dont really sell well...

Muscle cars, when done and marketed well...actually DO sell well. The Challenger is proof of that. 

Affordable mid-engined cars...when well done, unlike the Fiero,  like the Toyoter MR2...didnt sell well way back in the day. Ironically, the Fiero DID sell well...

When GM is moving away from ICE and going towards EVs...I dont think an affordable mid-engined ICE vehicle will make sense.  Maybe the Camaro will become an affordable EV sports car.  Skateboard platform and the battery being housed under the carriage type deal negates a need for...a mid-engined ICE sports car. 

However...

10 hours ago, dwightlooi said:

I know yoiu gays do not want to hear thus. But I think GM should have a Caddy version of the C8 instead of any Z06, ZR1 or whatever upgraded variants. What's the point in injecting Chevy with super-super car credentials? Caddy can you that in spades. Besides, obody is going to complain when the price tag breaches $100K when it's a caddy.

Corvette and/or Cadillac could benefit from this Speed proposal.  But from different "fiction" discussion.

Cadillac could  include a mid-engined sports car in its line-up with a Black-Wing V8...or better yet...what you have proposed with your Microblock engine ideas.  

However, like @Robert Hall said, high priced, ultra performing Vettes are part of the fabric...so Z06/ZR1, Zora full on EV or hybrid Vette is a must for being a Chevrolet and a Corvette at that.

Your Speed idea is a GREAT idea if Corvette was its own brand.

Yes...Cadillac be more awesome if it too, had a version of the C8.

But...Cadillac needs  product that better defines what Cadillac is all about. Cadillac is starved of such product as of now. A mid-engined sports car is not that product. When Cadillac rights itself, then and only then will a supercar should be in its cards. The XLR was flubbed. The Cien came and went as a concept.  The Ciel, El Miraj were wasted as concepts.  That was Cadillac's chance. Now...15 years later, they need to re-think their product line-up again. EVs are gonna be their new battle ground.

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by oldshurst442
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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, dfelt said:

GM has also stated while ICE auto's will be here through 2030, they have clearly stated that they will move to retire ICE as they bring out EV equals. As such, I could easily see an E-ROC replacing the Z28 sooner than later and agree with you that I can see the ICE Camaro dead after 2023. At most like Dwight says, could do minor refreshes letting the current model limp along till full replaced by EV versions.

That only works if consumers actually want to buy EVs. Outside of Global Warming coolaid strongholds like California that is not really happening for three reasons. (1) People like the ability to refuel in 2 minutes vs recharge in 2-10 hours. (2) At today's costs the battery costs more than the lifetime gasoline cost of ICE powered cars. (3) Batteries with an energy density of about 0.8MJ/kg is simply not a direct replacement for gasoline at 46 MJ/kg. If you car carries the same weight in fuel as the Tesla Model S does in battery mass (1,200 lbs) it'll have an astounding range of 6,000 miles at a modest 30 mpg.

If you have an all EV lineup today. GM will go out of business as it'll mean a 95% reduction in market share on top of losing money on every vehicle they sell.

IMHO, pure EVs are impractical. What is needed if we are to go to mostly EVs is some way to have infinite range using combustible fuels when you need to at a minimal space, weight and economic cost. Fuel efficiency is not particularly important since daily commutes can largely be done on battery power (if the inconvenience of having to plug the vehicle in every night). This points to a turbo-electric generator. Why? Because it is very simple. It is air cooled. And, it has very high power density -- about 50hp from the size of a stack of CDs. It is not very efficient. But if you only use it for that one interstate trip or two a year, plus when you forgot to plug in your car, who cares if it is 15 mpg?

Edited by dwightlooi
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Speaking of Turboelectric generators...

  1. Simplest (least efficient) is a turbocharger with a combustor between compressor and the turbine wheels. The shaft is then extended and a generator/starter added. Efficiency is going to be low because a single stage centrifugal compressor can generate a pressure ratio of maybe 4:1 (5:1 with advanced aerodynamics and larger sizings).
  2. Next up is a recuperated turbine (most common arrangement in the turbine generator world). That is we put a heat exchanger on the turbine exhaust and use it to heat air coming out of the compressor. This recovers the majority of the heat otherwise wasted into the atmosphere.With a simple recuperator, expect the efficiency of a 4:1 or 5:1 compression ratio ICE, albiet one operating without valves, cams, pistons, rods, rings, belts, ports and all the other nonsense to add friction and aspirational drag.
  3. Two steps up (more efficient) is a dual shaft design. You add a second turbocharger whose compressor feeds the first turbocarger's compressor and whose turbine is turned by the exhaust of the 1st turbo's turbine. Everything on the 1st turbo doesn't change, but now you are talking about 8:1 to 10:1 compression and practically ICE level efficiencies. The unit is started by spinning up the inner (high pressure) stage and lighting the combustor. The low pressure stage will catch up once the unit is self-sustaining. With a recuperator, a 2-stage turbine generator is every bit as good as a ICE running at it's optimum speed, load and at WOT.
  4. The most efficient is a COGES-E. Basically, you have the above, but instead of a recuperator you have a boiler which captures the heat by turning water into steam. The boiler can be so efficient that the exhaust air is no hotter than blast of summer wind (130~140 degrees F). The steam is then used to turn a secondary steam turbine to produce additional power. A COGES-E arrangement can be as good as 60~66% thermally efficient which beats the 50% from larger diesels and 35-40% from gasoline motors. This is the state of the art for liquid or gaseous fuel power generation.
  5. In cases where power density is paramount and efficiency is not particularly important, you'll see non-recuperated single or dual stage turbines. Basically, staging increases power, recuperation increases efficiency. A commercial airliner usually has a turbine APU in the tail which is not recuperated because nobody really cares about the fuel efficiency of the APU as ground and starting power generation is less than 0.02% of the fuel consumed on a flight.
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Posted (edited)

OK... given GM's announcement regarding their Ultium Battery architecture, my prescription for a practical EV will be:-

4 x Ultium Battery modules  = 33 kWh (~80 mile electric range) = enough for 95% of US commuters

1 x 30kW Capstone (single stage unrecuperated) Microturbine = Ability to recharge battery to 90% capacity in 1 hour

16 gallon fuel tank will provide 230 mile of additional range for a total of 310 miles*

*Note: With 16% thermal efficiency on the Turbine-Generator, 16 kg (5.56 gallons) of fuel is needed to produce 33kWh (or 80 mile range) using 12.9 kWh/kg Gasoline fuel. 16 gallons of fuel will hence provide (16/5.56) x 80 = 230 miles range extension.

Basically, the idea is that you get to be fully electric for your daily commute and grind. Once in a year when you drive to LA from San Francisco or whatever, it'll cost you $68 in gasoline at $3.30 a gallon which you can get in 2 minutes at any of the gas stations along the way. Sure as hell beats lugging around an additional 1000 lbs and $20,000 in battery capacity every day for capacity you use once or twice a year. Or, waiting in line to recharge four times along the way.

You can also go to a 33% efficiency recuperated turbine and basically half your fuel costs to $34 for that 380 mile trip (300 mile beyond electric range). But is saving that $34 once or twice a year worth the additional costs, space and weight of the recuperated turbine-generator (about $3000 more taking three times the space and weighing about 2.5 times as much)? I don't think so.

Edited by dwightlooi
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