C7 Corvette Art Prints
(Click the below images to see the larger version.)
11" x 17" Color prints made on card stock, signed and numbered by the artist - $29.95 + $6.95 S&H
11" x 17" Color Laser Print
$29.95 + $6.95 Shipping & Handling
$24.95 + $6.95 Shipping & Handling
Buy 2 Parchment or Color Laser Prints
Master Automotive Artist, Dana Forrester's
Four print sizes from 11x17 to 26x40
Each print is signed and numbered by Dana Forrester.
Giclee prints (pronounced "gee-clay") are high-quality prints made on heavy Somerset watercolor paper with museum-quality inks. The prints look as if they are original works of art produced on watercolor paper and are available on the four sizes listed below.
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Like blood in a pool of sharks, there’s nearly a fever pitch of anticipation and speculation over the upcoming C7 Corvette. If you Google search the term “C7 Corvette” you’ll get nearly 600,000 results. Whenever I post a C7-related story at CorvetteReport.com, the page hits take a spike. C7 fever began in mid-’07 with reports of a possible mid-engine C7. From there, nearly every possible “what if” concept was pinned on the the C7. Unlike previous “future Corvette” times, computer-generated images only added to the confusion because some looked like real prototype cars!
Then in February 2009, Chevrolet blew everyone out of the water at the Chicago Auto Show with the Corvette Stingray Concept car. Plus, once again, a Corvette would be a movie star, playing good-guy “Sideswipe” in the film “Transformers II.” There’s no mistaking the car for anything BUT a Corvette. It screams “CORVETTE.” And like previous Corvette concept cars, the Stingray has a swirl of controversy. But first, lets be clear, according to Corvette chief designer, Tom Peters (designer of the current C6 and Camaro), the Corvette Stingray Concept car is NOT the C7, period! What we see here is strictly a “concept car.” Perhaps some “what if” fun for the designers for a job well done on the C6.
The two elements that seem to polarize fans are the front and rear gills, and the split rear window. I added a poll feature to a recent blog post asking, “yea or nay” on the split-window, and got a 50/50 response. That aside, Tom Peters and his design team borrowed styling cues going back to the ‘59 Stingray Racer. The split-window that’s been called, “the original American Idol” is most obvious. The front and rear fender humps are a blend of C3 Shark styling with a hint of the C2 Sting Ray look. The roof has a more pronounced double-hump shape from the C5 and C6. The side cove air extractors and hood bulge, although more exaggerated, are right off the C6. The concept car is longer, lower, and wider, measuring 3.1-inches longer, 6.6-inches wider, and 5-inches lower than a stock C6. Most subtle of all is the crispness of the surface plane changes. Chief of GM Styling legend, Bill Mitchell, was famous for his “crisp” approach to styling. His theory was that a successful man always wears cloths that are pressed with crisp lines on the pants, shirt, and jacket. “Crisp” is a very good adjective to describe the overall look that Peters and his team created.
The Corvette Stingray Concept car is a “wish list” of features built with existing and hand-fabricated parts. The wish list for the body includes composite materials, however the actual concept car is all fiberglass because it’s so easy to fabricate, while the chassis structure is a production C6. With the clamshell hood up, the first thing one sees is the Formula 1-inspired, bell-crank suspension with bright red coil over shocks. We’ll have to wait and see if this makes it into the C7, but it sure looks cool. The rear suspension is stock C6 with modified wishbones and ZR1 disc brakes. The wheel/tire combo on the car is enormous. Up front the car is shod with 275/30/20 tires on 20x9.5 wheels. The back end is wearing 355/30/21 tires on 21x13 wheels.
The car’s engine is a little confusing. While the engine cover says, “Hybrid Stingray” under the cover is a stock LS3. What’s suggested isn’t a Volt-like hybrid system, but rather a collection of technologies including cylinder deactivation and possibly electric/battery assist for around town driving. Don’t go apoplectic, it’s just a concept. The automatic transmission in the car is straight off the current assembly line.
The car’s interior shows us that the Corvette designers ARE listening to the complaints about the C6’s interior. Just after the C6 came out, several other high-end performance cars arrived with gorgeous interiors that made the Corvette’s cabin look dull in comparison. If the Corvette Stingray Concept’s interior is a sneak peek of the C7 interior, potshots at the C7 Corvette interior will be a thing of the past. The dual cockpit layout features seats with substantial side bolsters, lots of carbon fiber and chrome trim with interesting LED lighting, navigation system, and media connectivity. Lets hope most of this translates into the C7.
As of this date, the body has not been wind tunnel tested, although heavily planed surfaces can be very tricky to get aerodynamically right. As it is just a concept car, it’s never been driven over 80-MPH. And with stylized tires with hand-cut treads, no one really wants to “see what this baby will do.” Aside from the production parts, everything else is untested, that’s why it’s considered a “concept car.” Some have mistakenly assumed that the egg-crate grille came from the current Camaro. The initial design sketches for the Corvette Stingray Concept were worked out before the retro Camaro was created.
On May 4, 2011 GM North American president, Mark Reuss not only officially announced that GM would be investing $131 million in the Bowling Green assembly plant, but that the C7 Corvette will probably be a ‘14 model. So, all we have to do is sit tight and wait for a possible early introduction. What’s certain is that the 60th Anniversary Corvette will be a C6. Might there be a 50th Anniversary Sting Ray Special Edition? With the Corvette product planning team, you never know until your do. Stay tuned! - KST
It seems that a few years into every Corvette generation, designers start thinking about a replacement car. In the summer of 2008, we got a glimpse of a possible C6 successor in the form of a Transformers movie concept car called the Corvette Centennial. Speculation over future Vettes has been sport for automotive journalist for decades, and with all the turmoil inside GM casting doubt on the car’s future, C7—and even C8 Corvette—rumormongering is rampant.
Let me state at the outset that I have no inside connections to the Corvette design group, and even if I did, they’re not about to spill the beans. That said, two recent developments have contributed to intense conjecture over the next car’s direction. First was the worst Corvette sales year since 1961. Units sold fell from 35,310 in 2008 to 13,934 in ’09—a 60 percent drop! The only good part was that sales of sports cars were off by a similar amount across the industry.
The second factor was the reaction of GM’s new upper management. According to BusinessWeek, ten of the company’s 12-member board of directors have no prior car experience. These officials reacted to the Corvette’s sales drop by calling upon GM design centers from around the world to submit new designs for the C7. While that strategy might make sense to someone with no car-design background, from this writer’s position, it could cause the Vette to lose its essence for the sake of doing something different. So far, we’ve not seen any of these “world designs.”
Three design parameters were set. The first was to attract more customers in Europe, the second was to attract younger buyers, and third was to make the car smaller. Let’s take a moment to dissect these goals. First, although Europeans like watching the booming C6.Rs at Le Mans, they don’t—and probably never will—buy very many Corvette street cars, which represent the antithesis of Euro design. Second, the Corvette has always cost twice as much as a regular Chevy. A $50,000 base Vette simply costs much more than most young people can afford. And third, the size complaint is a purely visual issue. The Porsche 911 Turbo and the Nissan GT-R Premium weigh 362 and 1,105 pounds more than the Z06 Vette, respectively, and yet they aren’t criticized for their bulk. So, does the Corvette have a size problem? Not to me, it doesn't
The latest news is that the C7 will be an interim car, while the “world class” mid-engine C8 is being developed for a possible 2018 release. The details are still up in the air, of course, as eight years model years equal an eternity in the car business.
The proportions of my illustrations match the Centennial concept car. And since that design drew on the C2 as a start, I took the shape of my rendering even closer to the C2 Sting Ray configuration. The side view of the nose definitely says shark, while the grille, side marker signals, and air splitter are all C6 ZR1. I like the forward-leaning front fender vents on the Centennial but borrowed the four-louver side vents from the ‘67, incorporating them into the C6-like side coves. The Centennial has vertical doors, which seem gimmicky to me. I made the doors shorter and cut them into the roof.
The front air splitter, side skirts, and rear valance bring the car up to date. When covered headlights were illegal, the pop-up design made sense, but the faired-in, covered lights add character. I tried a few different hood domes and felt this one worked best. The ‘67 Stinger-style bulge seemed forced. While the grille on the Centennial Concept Corvette is mildly interesting, I see too much Cadillac and not enough Corvette. The “pointiness” of the Centennial is good, but the gills and grille perplex me.
Since the arrival of the C5, the Corvette has been criticized for having a big butt. The Centennial’s rear fenders are unnecessarily bulky and complicate the back-end design. By eliminating them, I was able to slim down the posterior of the car. The lights are classic Corvette. If a Sting Ray–like roof comes back, the first-year car should use a split-window design, with subsequent versions getting a full window—a salute to the original. While it was interesting to see the homage to the split-window on the Centennial, I don’t like the roof indent that runs back to the center terminus of the rear leading edge.
Why did I reach so obviously into the C2 Corvette Sting Ray design? The C6 has a gentle Sting Ray flavor in its front and rear fender humps. The Centennial makes that more obvious. By removing the cartoon front and rear gills, I was able to slim down the back end and hold on to the C6’s excellent nose design. The fender humps are reminiscent of both the C2 and the Mako Shark II. The back end is classic Corvette, updated with a center brake light and ground-effects rear valance. Blog responses to the four center-mounted exhaust tips have been very positive. Side pipes and rear brake vents were tempting. Perhaps they’ll appear on the ZR1 version.
Talk of an “interim car” leaves me flat. Why bother? Just make the current car better. Designing a new Corvette is the hardest styling job in Detroit. It has to look new, yet familiar. I hope the stylists are able to draw on the car’s rich styling background and don’t lose their way chasing a “world car” concept. The Corvette is uniquely American and should stay that way. - KST