The loudest cheers at Barrett-Jackson the night of the final C7’s auction weren’t for the glossy black Z06, but for the crowd of American military veterans lining the stage in Corvette baseball caps.
“The packed house at Mohegan Sun gave them a hero's welcome and the loudest support of the night as the bidding quickly ratcheted into the millions,” said our man on the ground, Mark Mitias.
The entire proceeds of the $2.7 million sale are going to the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, to benefit the foundation’s mission of building accessible homes for the most gravely wounded combat veterans.
The charity auction of the final C7 Corvette heralds the changing of the guard from the front-engine C7 to the mid-engine C8 later this month. Mitias reports that the factory at Bowling Green is already gearing up for the mid-engine generation by building non-production versions of the C8 alongside production-spec C7s. These Capture Test Fleet (CTF) C8s will be tweaked, tuned, and crashed before the advent of the production-spec C8s.
When you first lay eyes on a C8 at your local dealership, you’ll likely look out on a row or two of its front-engined C7 predecessors. There is so far no indication that factory production for the C7 and C8 will overlap. However, the two generations will probably keep each other company on dealer lots, according to Corvette product manager Harlan Charles.
GM will unveil the mid-engine C8 Corvette in southern California on July 18, 2019, which also marks the final day customers can order the outgoing front-engine C7. So in case you don’t want to rely on the whims of dealers to stock your dream-spec Stingray, Grand Sport, Z06, or ZR1, you’ve got 16 days before orders close and the new C8 lands—because of course we’re counting.