Beginning with the 2010 model year, Chevrolet reintroduced the Corvette Grand Sport, a nameplate that was last used in 1996. The car combines the Corvette's LS3-based powertrain with unique, wide-body styling and racing-bred suspension. The model replaces the Z51 package from previous model years.
The car is offered in both coupe and convertible body styles, with either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission. The LS3 6.2-liter engine is rated at 430 horsepower and 424 pound-feet of torque with the standard exhaust system. An optional two-mode exhaust system elevates the power ratings to 436 hp and 428 lb-ft. Fuel economy is rated at 16 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway with the manual and 15/25 with the automatic.
Compared with the Z51 trim level it replaces, the Grand Sport delivers better handling with wider wheels and tires, revised shock, stabilizer bar and spring specifications and specific gearing. Th changes enable cornering capability of 1.0 g, as well as a 0.2-second improvement in zero to 60 mph acceleration versus standard LS3-powered models.
Other highlights include 18- and 19-inch wheels, a Z06-style splitter and spoiler, functional brake ducts, and Z06-size brakes, including 14-inch front rotors with six-piston calipers and 13.4-inch rear rotors with four-piston calipers.
Magnetic Ride Control is available as an option. This technology uses valve-less damping and Magneto-Rheological fluid technology in its shock absorbers to control resistance. Essentially, the system can magnetize particles to change the flow resistance on the fly and adjust the ride from hard to soft, or soft to hard.
All of Corvette's exterior colors are offered on the Grand Sport, and an available Heritage package adds front fender hash marks offered in four colors, as well as two-tone seats with Grand Sport embroidery. The Grand Sport can be ordered with 1LT, 2LT, 3LT and 4LT trim packages, too.
The Grand Sport is available in Coupe and Convertible form.
60th Anniversary Design Package
New for the latest model year is a 60th Anniversary Design Package that includes an Arctic White exterior (convertibles get a blue top) along with an Blue Diamond leather-wrapped interior with suede accents. Upping the style quotient is a ZR1-style rear spoiler, special badging, gray-painted brake calipers and a "60th" logo on the wheel center caps, steering wheel and seat head restraints. An optional graphics package adds full-length racing stripes in Pearl Silver Blue (including a tonal stripe stitched into the convertible's top)
All Corvette models come equipped with dual front and side airbags in addition to traction and stability control systems.
Those looking for a performance car at the price point of the Corvette Grand Sport can also choose the 650 horsepower Ford Shelby GT500 and the precise-handling Porsche Cayman as well as Chevrolet's own Camaro ZL1.