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The company is expected to phase out the current front-engine edition by 2021.

General Motors is reportedly planning to unveil its mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette by 2018.Recent speculation suggested the oft-rumored flagship might be revealed in concept form sometime this year ahead of a 2018 launch, however sources now tell The Detroit News to expect a 2019 market arrival.

Allegedly referred to by the development monicker 'Emperor,' the C8 is rumored to be introduced with a base ZR1-spec trim. A higher-performance edition is believed to be called the Zora, honoring the late GM engineer and Corvette pioneer Zora Arkus-Duntov.

Reports disagree on wether the company will stick with a pushrod V8 or introduce a more advanced performance engine. In any case, engineers working on the iconic nameplate's most significant redesign are presumably tasked with delivering a substantial performance improvement.

Separate speculation suggests the platform could be developed with a hybrid all-wheel-drive system and active aerodynamic elements.

GM is undoubtedly hoping to reduce the Corvette's median buyer age. Switching to a mid-engine could help attract younger buyers. The platform is also viewed as a potential candidate for a new high-performance Cadillac halo car.