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Drove a C8 for the first time today!

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  • Drove a C8 for the first time today!

    Thanks to a friend in our local club. 3LT Z51 coupe with mag ride. Only about 20 minutes, and out of respect to the owner I didn't flog it, so these are superficial impressions.

    It is MUCH more refined than my C7 vert. MUCH quieter in the cockpit. Is that a good thing? On the highway or a long trip, definitely. Going for a sporty drive, I'm not so sure. There's something more visceral, more alive about the C7. It feels more like a sports car - the C8 more like a GT. The manual transmission adds to that feeling. The DCT sure does snap off shifts in a big hurry, though. It's fine in automatic mode, but I think other than on the highway and it heavy traffic, I'll drive in M - just more fun to be in charge. In my M7 C7, going between V8 and V4 modes almost always produces a shudder. It was unnoticeable in the C8. I didn't notice any ticking from the fuel injectors, but we did have music playing softly.

    My C7 is a base suspension, but with Z51 sway bars and bushings so it rides just a bit more firmly, and rolls a lot less, than the plain base suspension. Without driving back to back on the same roads it's hard to be sure, but the C8 in sport mode felt similar over bumps to my base C7. In tour mode noticeably more compliant, but with no more body roll. I was only in track mode briefly, but it was noticeably firmer. But unlike the C7, which is VERY firm, the C8 in track mode seems usable on the street. I think a C7 Z51 in sport mode would be much harsher over bumps, so my takeaway is that the C8 is more compliant, more comfortable mode for mode than the C7, but with no handling penalty (body roll). I'm not 100% decided, but I think the ability to firm things up will motivate me to get the mag ride on my planned base model C8.

    The interior (natural, not dipped) is a cut above the C7, which has a pretty nice interior. It definitely feels like a high class expensive automobile. The tan stripes on the dash do strongly reflect in the windshield. But by the end of the drive, I was already ignoring the reflections to a large extent. With more time, they'd probably fade out of my consciousness most of the time. I definitely don't want the natural dipped, though. (It was very cloudy, so I can't comment on how much polarized sunglasses would improve things.) The mirror / screen was interesting. I was getting both the camera image AND the reflection of the view through the back, which was a little disconcerting. Probably adjusting the mirror differently would help with that. The car owner said he's gotten used to it, though.

    I didn't have any issue with the squircle steering wheel shape, but the spoke location will take some getting used to. On my C7, with the spokes at 9:00 and 3:00, I drive with my thumbs hooked over the spokes. Doing that on the C8 positions my hands a lot lower. I tried driving with my hands above the spokes, but that felt weird, too. I'm sure I'll find a position that I'll get used to.

    The IP and center screen are much better than the C7's. No question at all. Clearer, more flexible, bigger and easier to read.

    Performance? More than adequate, but so is the C7. Neither is going to feel slow.

    On balance? No question the C8 is the superior car, but I'll miss the snorty, rorty, more "primitive" sports car aspect of the C7 and 3 pedal driving. Also the ability to make the exhaust a bit louder cheaply, just by changing the x-pipe. Don't think I'm going to spend the bucks to swap out the entire tailpipe / muffler assembly. From outside the car the stock exhaust in track mode sounds fine, but from inside the car it's definitely muted. I hear the 'vert is a little more audible in the cockpit, especially with the rear window down.

    After the drive, I tried to hand him the fob for my car instead, but he wasn't buying it! I wish I could figure out a way to keep both.
    SunKissed, my 2015 2LT, 7MT, Black over Daytona Sunrise Orange Metallic, Stingray convertible (One of about 40)

    Purchased 5/2/2015,
    >36,000 miles

    Proud member of the Old Dominion Corvette Club. Check us out http://www.olddominioncorvetteclub.org

    Never grow up - It's a trap.

  • #2
    Very cool. I saw my first C8 in person Friday. A fellow CC member, Tim brought his to dinner. Red/Red 2LT Z51. Tim graciously offered to let me drive his car or take me for a ride. Since I just had rotator cuff surgery and am still in a sling I reluctantly declined. What a beautiful car! Seeing Tim's is sure going to make this interminable wait even more agonizing. CC just told me again Friday that I am at 3000 with no change in status. If anyone can give me a heads up on order XQTTG2 I would sure appreciate it.

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    • #3
      Very generous gesture to offer 👍👍 sharing is caring 👏
      Arctic White 2LT, G8G, HUL, F9, AH2, 5ZZ, E60, STI, SHW J6F, Q8Q, RCC, Z51, ZYC.

      Comment


      • #4
        Hey meyerweb,
        I"m glad you got to experience from the drivers seat the new level of refinement the C8 offers, great first impressions.
        Vette's owned: 99 Sebring Silver Convert - 10yrs, 2008 Crystal Red Convert,w/cam, longtubes and Vortech supercharger. C8 VIN 00336 built on 2/10/20 - Delivered 3/18/20 C8 Spec: Torch Red 2LT, Z51, FE4, E60, CF7, FA5, AH2, HUL, J6E, TU7, 3F9, Q8P, 5ZU, R8C

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        • #5
          Today I went over the magic 500 mile mark and could wind the engine out and floor the thing - I can tell you coming from the Aston Martin world where loud is a basic expected part of the car, this thing at full throttle is very loud. Today was my first experience with the sound. The Aston always fed back some sound, the C8 not so much under normal driving. I'd say now that I experienced both cars the V12S (565HP) and the C8 the feel of acceleration is about the same. I also have the standard suspension, but drove a Z51 with mag shocks. The standard suspension is soft and not something you would want to track - but I do miss three things about the Aston. First is the Aston is much more of a solid car overall there is some looseness I sense compared to the Aston. The Aston dual clutch 7-speed automated manual is the same as their manual transmission, and in manual mode (automated mode is terrible), paddle shifting requires lifting on the gas pedal between gears, so you are almost as involved as a manual transmission - to me that was perfect. The C8 transaxle needs no lifting of the throttle between gears - so it's less intimate. And lastly the Aston interior was elegant - hardly any plastic in sight, however the new Vantages are no longer elegant and a mess of an interior. Other than those issues, the C8 is the best bargain in the auto industry today, and possibly ever.

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          • #6
            I thought Aston Martin’s did not have dual clutches?
            2LT coupe, ELB, GT2, Sky Cool Gray, two-tone, front lift, body color accents, NPP, body color roof, black seat belts, Spectra Gray wheels, black calipers, battery protection.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by joehebertiii View Post
              I thought Aston Martin’s did not have dual clutches?
              The Vantage12 S has the Sportshift III 7 speed clutch based automated manual.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by meyerweb View Post
                No question the C8 is the superior car, but I'll miss the snorty, rorty, more "primitive" sports car aspect of the C7
                Glad you finally drove one, I had much the same reaction when I drove my C8 for the first time. My C7 was much more like a race car, even with adjustable suspension in tour mode it tossed you around quite a bit, it was loud and a bit rough, but it was an awesome car. I don't regret buying the C8, to me it's a huge step forward for the Corvette brand, and I hope they will keep making the car for another sixty-seven years.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by OT997tt View Post

                  The Vantage12 S has the Sportshift III 7 speed clutch based automated manual.
                  Yes, but it's not a dual clutch transmission. It has a traditional clutch mounted ahead of a traditional manual that is shifted via paddles instead of a lever. But instead of using your left foot to control the clutch, a computer does it. So you don't get the super quick, no lift shifts of a DCT. Sort of the worst of a DCT (you don't get to control the clutch manually) without the benefits.
                  SunKissed, my 2015 2LT, 7MT, Black over Daytona Sunrise Orange Metallic, Stingray convertible (One of about 40)

                  Purchased 5/2/2015,
                  >36,000 miles

                  Proud member of the Old Dominion Corvette Club. Check us out http://www.olddominioncorvetteclub.org

                  Never grow up - It's a trap.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    One other thought that I forgot to mention in the OP: I'm really not crazy about the long row of climate control buttons. It would be nice if there were more easily differentiated by feel. But I imagine I'll get use to it.
                    SunKissed, my 2015 2LT, 7MT, Black over Daytona Sunrise Orange Metallic, Stingray convertible (One of about 40)

                    Purchased 5/2/2015,
                    >36,000 miles

                    Proud member of the Old Dominion Corvette Club. Check us out http://www.olddominioncorvetteclub.org

                    Never grow up - It's a trap.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by meyerweb View Post
                      One other thought that I forgot to mention in the OP: I'm really not crazy about the long row of climate control buttons. It would be nice if there were more easily differentiated by feel. But I imagine I'll get use to it.
                      I am not bothered by the CC switches on the ski slope, but the CC GUI on the touch screen is excellent and much better laid out. When I want to adjust the climate controls, I just use the screen.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by meyerweb View Post
                        One other thought that I forgot to mention in the OP: I'm really not crazy about the long row of climate control buttons. It would be nice if there were more easily differentiated by feel. But I imagine I'll get use to it.
                        I don't like taking my eye off the road and the only control I use a lot is the first one for temperature, but there are full controls on the infotainment screen. I've only had the car for a month and most of my driving has been done for fun so my concentration is elsewhere.
                        Murray - Uxbridge, Ontario, Canada
                        2020 Torch red Stingray coupe, Adrenaline red 2LT Q8Q E60 NPP
                        Deposit: July 30/19, 1100: Sept 15/19, 3000: Feb 14/20, TPW WAS May 18, August 24 and lastly July 27,
                        3300: July 15, 3400: July 22, 3800: July 30, 4200: Aug 06, 5000: Aug 7, 6000: Aug 12!

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