As we wrap up the Americana celebration on Speedhunters, I think it’s appropriate that we put the seven generations of the Chevrolet Corvette together for a reader poll showdown. It is after all “America’s sports car”.
So then, do you prefer the classic lines of the early cars? The high tech performance of the newer models? Maybe you even like the disco era machines? Whatever your choice, it’s time to be heard.
The original. Although it was only available with six cylinder engines upon launch in 1953, the C1 developed into quite a potent machine with the addition of the small block V8. By the early ’60s the Corvette had already begun to establish itself as an American legend.
The second generation Corvette was a huge leap forward when it was released in 1963. Not only was the styling beautiful, but the C2 featured independent rear suspension. Later model years saw the addition of four wheel disc brakes, optional fuel injection, and also big block engines.
In 1968, the third generation Corvette debuted with dramatic new styling, The early C3s were available with a hot assortment of both small block and big block motors, but by the time the mid ’70s rolled around, regulations had lowered performance significantly.
1983 saw the introduction of the all new C4 Corvette. While the early models weren’t known for fantastic performance, by the time the ’90s rolled around the C4 had begun to recover the excitement that had gone been since the ’60s. The hottest of the C4s was the ZR-1, which featured the LT5 DOHC engine designed with the help of Lotus.
The C5 Corvette was introduced in 1997 along with GM’s all new LS1 V8. While the standard C5 models offered great performance, the Z06 introduced in 2001 was even more enthusiast-focused with its hi-po LS6 and beefed up suspension.
The C6 Corvette took the great attributes of the C5 and improved on them even further. The iconic pop-up lights were gone, but the C6 continued to set performance benchmarks. The Z06 made over 500 horsepower with the new LS7 V8, and a couple years later the supercharged ZR-1 joined the lineup making an astonishing 638 horsepower.
Lastly, we have the recently introduced seventh generation Corvette. While the highly advanced C7 won’t hit the streets until later this year, it’s already shaping up to take the Corvette to the next level.
Which is the best? That’s for you to decide.
C5 Z06 is the best bang for the buck. sweet as hell too!!!
I'd rock a C1 also though. that shit is beautiful!!! with a C1, i wouldn't need speed. just cruising slow....and low.
The C2 is the best , no way a 'Vette can be more beautiful than the C2 , it's the best Corvette for me , its style , Rock N' Roll , its perfect!
I hate Chevy with a passion, but boy do I love the C2 Vette. I'll take a '67 with the L88 motor and side exhausts!
i said c7 (c2 was my really close second choice) but i voted c7 because its the first vette that i am actually excited for the release of :P
Lol, I'm one of the weirdos that said "C4", too... All the sharp edges it has just stand out from all the other generations, which are more round... Plus, it was the only one with a DOHC engine.
C2, C3, C6,and C7. I stole my mothers C3 to whoop ass at a my hjgh school. Alot of guys were running eg's and ek's at the time. 5 car lengths was a good enough beating :) I really enjoyed that. The C2 split window just for its rarity and beauty. The C6 ZR1 and ZOsexy sounds like angels singing and the C7 is a cold m*therf*cker looks wise and performance wise.
Its hard to top a C2 split window but it was still a hard pick over the C3 after having my grandpas stingray be one of the first cars I ever drove.
I would vote C4 Grand Sport, if it was on there. But definitely C5! gotta love Z06 rims and flip up headlights!
I'm thinking the C7 will ultimately be the best model simply due to the evolution of technology however it's quirks have yet to be seen and the prices will undoubtedly be high for a few years. With that in mind I think the C5 is a remarkable value but personally I'd rather have a base model C6 than a C5 Z06 based on dimensions and interior styling. I'm voting C7.
I've got a real soft spot for the C4 even though it's performance wasn't exactly spectacular, but the late C3's really looked cool, so they get my vote.
I'd have to say the C5 Z06 is the best Vette for these reasons:
1) They cost around $20,000 now
2) weigh around 2900lbs
3) 400hp / 400tq from jump
4) Closer to the performance of current Vettes than the earlier models
5) Cheaper than the earlier models and the later models by a long shot
6) With a few modifications they can be made into absolute track monsters for a fraction of the cost of cars like the R8, 911 etc etc
7) The LS6 was a very iconic motor and has a huge aftermarket base
8) they look good!
The C5 is the most cost effective car to have the styling of a vette and the performance of a super car in summary and I think that is the best of both worlds and therefor makes it the best.
Tough choice between "best" and "favourite". The C4 and C5 hit me right in the childhood feels, but the Corvette becomes a better car with each new iteration.
how is the c7 in third? its not a vote for the worst taillights corvette has ever had guys, so no need to vote for the c7, i like the c2 (and voted for it), if not for the c2 id have to say the c6
@drkennedy98 C7 looks like a Viper imho...in fact, a lot of times I mistake it for a Viper, it's that bad.
@hanablemoore Do you realize you just compared a Corvette to a Civic? So don't tell me FWD suck, and Hondas, and imports in general. You're comparing something that shouldn't be compared or in the same sentence, and yet most domestic guys and RWD fanboys bash on FF Hondas. So pathetic. This wasn't directed at you, I'm just putting it out there.
@Nihilation Have you ever been in one on a race track with a driver who knew what they were doing? I remember when I was 17 I got a ride in a C5 driven by Rita Wilson, female Auto-x champion. She had slicks, air intake and sway bars and I could not believe how fast she was in a stock Vette. Unreal car.
With the money you save on a C5 compared to a base C7 or C6 you can build the C5 to be incredible. Carvaggio interior and all. Just a thought.
@Novac Darius Classic Troll.
@Novac Darius Amazing. Truly a miracle. You're the first blind person to post on Speedhunters! Congrats! Check's in the mail.
@EricSeanDelaney My thoughts exactly.
@Novac Darius Yes, you said as much.