The first-ever Chevrolet Corvette E-Ray hybrid sportscar was unveiled with plenty of fanfare. While it does come with a dose of electrification, it wasn't enough to dilute the Corvette C8 recipe. Instead, it even enhanced it and made it a better sportscar in certain ways. The first electrified Corvette also happens to be the first all-wheel drive (AWD) model in the sportscar's lineage, and this results in some interesting results when pitting it against other more expensive Italian supercars, which in this instance came courtesy of Hagerty.
Electrification Made The Corvette Better
Gearheads often raise their pitchforks when a vehicle has been given a dose of electrification since this usually leads to a diluted driving experience even if it means a more powerful yet more efficient car. The Corvette E-Ray still has the same 6.2-liter naturally-aspirated LT2 V-8 as the standard Stingray, but the addition of electric motors at the front axle increases the total output from 495 horsepower to 665 horsepower. This is enough for a claimed 0-60 mph time of 2.5 seconds and a quarter-mile time of 10.5 seconds, but the real-world results are actually better.
The Corvette E-Ray is competing against the 610-horsepower Lamborghini Huracan Evo Spyder rear-wheel drive (RWD) and the far more powerful 710-horsepower Ferrari F8 Tributo--both of which only have two-wheel traction. Off the line, the Chevrolet Corvette E-Ray claws onto the road immediately, with the front electric motors helping the Corvette E-Ray reach 60 mph in just 2.4 seconds--a tenth faster than Chevrolet claims. As for the other two? Well, both the Ferrari and Lamborghini were scrambling for traction--with the Huracan suffering the worst amount of wheelspin. As a result, the F8 Tributo hit 60 mph in 2.7 seconds while the Huracan Evo RWD did the same job in 3.5 seconds.
But the 0-60 mph time doesn't tell the whole story. Once hitting the quarter mile, the F8 Tributo narrows its gap with the Corvette E-Ray, because once it finds traction, its power and weight advantage over the Chevy is now at its advantage. The Corvette E-Ray reaches the quarter mile in 10.4 seconds at 129 mph, but while the Ferrari reaches the quarter mile 0.2 seconds later, it'll obliterate the Corvette E-Ray if the road was longer as it arrived with a top speed of 137 mph. Lastly, there is no changing the fact that the Huracan Evo will be the slowest even past the quarter mile. It reached the end of the strip in 11.1 seconds at 129 mph.
It's Also Nipping On The Toes Of The Z06
A comparison to the Corvette Z06 was also made by Jason Cammisa. The Z06's flat-plane crank V-8 will certainly be anyone's choice when it comes to the soundtrack, but it does the quarter mile a tenth slower than the E-Ray at 10.5 seconds. Does this mean you should cancel your Z06 in favor of the E-Ray? Not quite. Past the quarter mile, the power produced by the E-Ray's front electric motors dramatically tapers off, and combined with the fact that it's also heavier, the Z06 will outrun the E-Ray when given a longer track.
What does this all mean? It just shows that the Corvette E-Ray, which has a starting price of $104,295 for the 1LZ coupe and $111,295 for the convertible, can keep up or even outperform Italian supercars that cost two to three times more. If this drag race has convinced you to get an electrified Corvette, then by all means head to your Chevy dealership that will probably give you a ridiculous markup for it.