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ME’s Customer Deliveries Late Next Summer

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  • ME’s Customer Deliveries Late Next Summer

    Note please that this thread was originally written a long time ago, and circumstances might have changed, leading instead to fall deliveries, but that too is guesstimate.

    What is this SWAG based on?

    Facts:

    1) On December 11, 2017 GM sent a memo to all its dealers who were getting a 2019 ZR1 allocation, stating that ZR1 build would end “approximately March, 2019.”

    2) On February 26, 2012 GM stopped the C6 assembly line. It took them just six weeks to do major changes within the Plant, then start C7 production.

    3) Last fall, the Plant went through a complete gut-and-rebuild. As BGA Manager Kai Spande said at one point when it was fully gutted, “I could take a bowling ball and roll it from one end of the plant to the other without it hitting anything.” And as he added later, we replaced all the equipment within the plant, majorly improving our production processes during that 13 weeks. For example, instead of Corvettes first carrying their weight on their compressed suspensions not far from the end of the line (having body panels being attached long before suspension compression), after the 13 week massive improvements, the body now travels on its compressed suspensions toward the beginning of the assembly process on a “skillet” (pic below), with its suspension fully compressed before body panels are consequently, more-precisely-placed on the car (now occurring towards the end of the assembly line). Thanks to CorvetteBlogger for this picture.

    4) While the Plant was physically ready to start producing C7’s in June, 2013, the first C7’s deliberately were not sent to customers for many months do to the extremely slow, deliberative, ramp-up-process (starting with one car per hour), and later even when the ramp up was pretty much complete when the regular production rate was achieved, next came a roughly 3 week quality control hold.


    Click image for larger version  Name:	49279E42-F9AB-4C78-BD2F-C4E05F4C253B.jpeg Views:	3 Size:	55.8 KB ID:	2224


    Assumptions:
    Due to changing information, some of these assumptions and conclusion have changed since this thread was first created three months ago.

    1) GM will end production of 2019 ZR1’s the same time as they do SR’s, GS’s, and Z06’s.

    2) GM is smart and plans ahead. During last fall’s 13 gut-then-rebuild of BGA, they did not buy one tool, not one piece of equipment, nor implement one new process/system then that they knew would not continue to work smoothly for 2020 ME's single assembly line production. Or looking at this in reverse, would GM buy new tools and equipment just to abandon them after just one year’s usage, wasting the time and money spent to introduce them?

    3) This leads me to conclude that, especially as the conversation of the Plant from the C6 to C7 production was approximately six weeks, and as most of the “heavy lifting” to prepare the Plant to be able to assembly, nose-to-tail ME’s and FE’s on the single assembly line next year was already done last fall, I am consequently believing that the conversion to assembling 2020 Corvettes would take approximately eight weeks (and could be less).

    4) When the eight week plant assembly line physical changes occur next April and May (remembering that 2019 production ends in March), during that time, as was done for the first time this last fall, the assembly line workers will be engaging in alternative “computer-then-“hands on training”, the latter with assembly “bucks” and with the same tools they will later use in assembling the car, then doing that same two-step all over again. Each employees will tested and re-tested to insure that they individually meet not only their job exacting performance specs, but for coverage/redundancy, also meet these standards for one additional job in their assembly area of the plant. This will mean that when the line’s physical changes are done, the employees will be ready to start building the ME’s, though as always, using an extremely-deliberate, ramp up assembly process.

    5) If all the above assumptions are true, the first ME would start down the line around June 1st. It will be an agonizingly slow process, maybe at a rate of one per every few hours at the beginning — perhaps even slower. When those first cars come off the line, they will be excruciatingly dissected by teams of QC specialists going over each car, with every during-that-day issue and every item found to not be perfect in each car’s audit, being forwarded on to the daily QC meetings held at the Plant every single day of the car’s production at 7:00 AM. The roughly twenty-five (25) person meetings are lead by either Kai Spande or Nora Roper (Assistant Plant Manager), and consist of not just the QC team members, but reps from part-purchasing, the union, the different chassis, trim and other lines, the different sub-assembly area, and more — all trying to figure out what went right, and most importantly, what needs to be improved now.

    6) With the ME’s so different than FE’s, GM will again have a four week quality control hold (QCH) after the first completed ones roll off the line. We have been spoiled that last few years to have that hold be reduced to two weeks, but highly unlikely next year.

    So putting all the above together, best estimation is that similar to the C7’s release to customers, will be towards late summer (which ends on September 23, 2019). Of course, we all hope that all goes superbly well, and that whereas the first C7 Customer car (received the day after Rick Hendricks got his), was received by our forum member CyberZ51 on September, 20, 2013 (as per below), that the first delivered ME is comparatively much earlier.

    But as of now, I am thinking that the end of summer first deliveries of ME's is still the most accurate guess we outsiders can make.

    Click image for larger version  Name:	AB6A729D-91A8-4C55-A683-5B8BADF44F89.jpeg Views:	2 Size:	683.2 KB ID:	2223

    Wonder if a member of this forum again gets the very first customer ME (after Rick Hendricks LOL).
    Attached Files
    Last edited by John; 12-14-2018, 03:19 PM.
    GBA Black; HTO Twilight/Tension interior; Z51 & Mag Ride; E60 lift; 5VM visible carbon fiber package; 5ZZ high wing; FA5 interior vis CF; ZZ3 engine appearance; 3LT; Q8T Spectra Gray Tridents; J6N Edge Red Calipers; SNG Edge Red Hashmarks; VQK Splash Guards; RCC Edge Red engine cover; VJR illuminated sill plates. Lifetime, annual contributors, and 23 year members of National Corvette Museum. Home is the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

  • #2
    Sounds promising !! Still hoping for a Detroit reveal in Jan.

    Regards Brian

    Comment


    • #3
      Yes, yes, if not sooner. When I first calculated the NAIAS show, it was 675 days into the future. It is now just 178 days away (as I assume that GM will do it as last time, actually reveal in advance of the show a day or two).

      But maybe we get lucky and the reveal is sooner than that. But please GM, not outside of the U.S.!
      GBA Black; HTO Twilight/Tension interior; Z51 & Mag Ride; E60 lift; 5VM visible carbon fiber package; 5ZZ high wing; FA5 interior vis CF; ZZ3 engine appearance; 3LT; Q8T Spectra Gray Tridents; J6N Edge Red Calipers; SNG Edge Red Hashmarks; VQK Splash Guards; RCC Edge Red engine cover; VJR illuminated sill plates. Lifetime, annual contributors, and 23 year members of National Corvette Museum. Home is the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

      Comment


      • #4
        John---MUST agree 100% on the Reveal In The US statement. Only appropriate that American Iron be announced in the US of A!

        BTW I am waiting with baited breath to see the first pic, video and review of the new beast!

        Comment


        • #5
          Busa Dave, good to see you here. You always add a lot of energy to a forum.

          At least GM, let’s get started with the two month long, teaser video process you did for the C7.

          https://www.midenginecorvetteforum.c...tease-progress
          GBA Black; HTO Twilight/Tension interior; Z51 & Mag Ride; E60 lift; 5VM visible carbon fiber package; 5ZZ high wing; FA5 interior vis CF; ZZ3 engine appearance; 3LT; Q8T Spectra Gray Tridents; J6N Edge Red Calipers; SNG Edge Red Hashmarks; VQK Splash Guards; RCC Edge Red engine cover; VJR illuminated sill plates. Lifetime, annual contributors, and 23 year members of National Corvette Museum. Home is the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

          Comment


          • #6
            I also hope they do the intro in the US. Doing it in another country just doesn't seem appropriate. Even less so if done in one of the countries that oppresses women and their human rights.
            Lynnie, "Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal. "
            - Albert Camus

            Comment


            • #7
              This rig is a legacy of Duntov's vision for Corvette. Zora would roll over in his grave if they debuted this car overseas. Nothing wrong with taking it overseas and showing it around the globe (and probably should/will do that)- but the initial reveal should be here.

              Comment


              • #8
                Here, here (as the British say in enthusiastic agreement)!!
                GBA Black; HTO Twilight/Tension interior; Z51 & Mag Ride; E60 lift; 5VM visible carbon fiber package; 5ZZ high wing; FA5 interior vis CF; ZZ3 engine appearance; 3LT; Q8T Spectra Gray Tridents; J6N Edge Red Calipers; SNG Edge Red Hashmarks; VQK Splash Guards; RCC Edge Red engine cover; VJR illuminated sill plates. Lifetime, annual contributors, and 23 year members of National Corvette Museum. Home is the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Excellent analysis in the first post John.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thanks AbqVic. i have since wondered, for new reasons/ideas, as to whether the first customer deliveries might come soon than late next summer, as in this “update thread.”

                    https://www.midenginecorvetteforum.c...te-next-summer
                    GBA Black; HTO Twilight/Tension interior; Z51 & Mag Ride; E60 lift; 5VM visible carbon fiber package; 5ZZ high wing; FA5 interior vis CF; ZZ3 engine appearance; 3LT; Q8T Spectra Gray Tridents; J6N Edge Red Calipers; SNG Edge Red Hashmarks; VQK Splash Guards; RCC Edge Red engine cover; VJR illuminated sill plates. Lifetime, annual contributors, and 23 year members of National Corvette Museum. Home is the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by John View Post
                      Busa Dave, good to see you here. You always add a lot of energy to a forum.

                      At least GM, let’s get started with the two month long, teaser video process you did for the C7.

                      https://www.midenginecorvetteforum.c...tease-progress
                      Wonder when they'll say "Yup, it's the Midengine Corvette". We all know that it is, but as far as I know they haven't officially acknowledged that this car even exists yet.
                      Last edited by Bluevette; 09-05-2018, 05:21 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by John View Post
                        Hear, hear (as the British say in enthusiastic agreement)!!
                        fify

                        (your resident consultant on things British)

                        2020 C8 Corvette
                        Shadow Grey Metallic on Black
                        2LT, Z51 + MRC
                        Spectra Grey Tridents
                        Carbon flash mirrors and spoiler

                        I'm a Rat and so is my car! (a reference to the Chinese astrological calendar).

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          That you all, in advance, for fify’ing things for me all the time (“fixed it for you”). Bikerjulio, I had to look up “fify.”
                          GBA Black; HTO Twilight/Tension interior; Z51 & Mag Ride; E60 lift; 5VM visible carbon fiber package; 5ZZ high wing; FA5 interior vis CF; ZZ3 engine appearance; 3LT; Q8T Spectra Gray Tridents; J6N Edge Red Calipers; SNG Edge Red Hashmarks; VQK Splash Guards; RCC Edge Red engine cover; VJR illuminated sill plates. Lifetime, annual contributors, and 23 year members of National Corvette Museum. Home is the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Click image for larger version  Name:	EEB56D1A-24D7-4DFC-B93D-18376EBDD0B7.jpeg Views:	1 Size:	2.52 MB ID:	17576 I thought I got mine in late September so I checked my records.....This shows 10/04/13 .....
                            boy did she turn heads for the first year of ownership.
                            Last edited by MikeC8; 12-01-2018, 09:00 AM.
                            RED ,C8. 2LT Z51.black wheels and trim. .... Order status 6000 car is home in garage
                            .VIN.1906

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Wouldn’t today be a great day for a reveal announcement!
                              There is a madness to my method!

                              2015 Z06 Torch/adrenaline
                              2001 coupe Torch/oak R8C
                              79 coupe Silver/oyster
                              All one owner
                              Museum lifetime members

                              Comment

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