New 2024 Chevrolet Corvette E-Ray storms in with 646bhp hybrid V8
The E-Ray is the fastest accelerating Corvette in history, thanks to an electrically-assisted V8 and four-wheel drive
The Corvette has traded on its traditional petrol-fuelled thrills for decades, but in 2023, Chevrolet is riding the wave of electrification to bring us this: the Corvette E-Ray. The C8 model's LT2 V8 remains, but thanks to a front-mounted electric motor, the E-Ray is the first-ever four-wheel drive Corvette, and one of the quickest.
The electric motor and 6.2-litre naturally-aspirated V8 provide 646bhp in total - falling slightly short of the C8 Z06 model on power and, indeed, the monstrous 745bhp C7 ZR1 - but the E-Ray completes the 0-60mph sprint quicker than both with a time of 2.5 seconds.
The e-motor is powered by a 1.9kWh battery pack, which can't be charged with a plug - instead, it's topped up by regenerative energy while driving. To squeeze more efficiency from the powertrain, the E-Ray can shut off four of its eight cylinders on the move, and pure-electric driving is possible under certain conditions.
A selection of six drive modes, including Tour, Track and a configurable My Mode setting, dictate the car’s deployment of electric power, while an additional Stealth Mode allows silent EV running when starting a journey.
Due to the battery and motor hardware, the E-Ray’s 1,712kg dry weight exceeds the standard car’s figure by 110kg. To compensate, Chevrolet’s engineers have fitted carbon ceramic brakes and the firm’s Magnetic Ride Control 4.0 suspension as standard, the latter of which is likely to adopt a bespoke tune.
The E-Ray is just over 9cm wider than the base model, too, which should help mitigate the impact of the extra mass. A set of staggered 20- and 21-inch wheels are bespoke to the hybrid version, and can be specified with either Michelin Pilot Sport or grippier Pilot Sport 4S tyres. Those 21-inch rear wheels have colossal 345-width rubber to apply the E-Ray’s torque to the road.
To distinguish the newcomer as the electrified Corvette, a new Z06-inspired front bumper has been fitted, and the rear end has been restyled to blend with the wider bodyshell. New colours unique to the E-Ray are available too, along with carbon fibre exterior and interior trims.
Given that the standard C8 and Z06 models are available in right-hand drive form on our shores, the E-Ray could arrive in the UK in due course. In the US, prices start from $104,295 (£85,000 approx) for the coupe variant and $111,295 (£91,000) for the convertible, although these prices would be unlikely to reflect those of UK imports.