By Brian Thevenot
5:00 AM PDT, July 9, 2013
The 2014 Corvette Stingray will have an Eco mode that delivers 30 miles per gallon, just in case it gets stolen by a band of rogues from the Sierra Club.
Officially, the next-generation ‘Vette will carry an Environmental Protection Agency rating of just 29 mpg on the highway and 17 in the city. That’s because the car gets only 28 mpg on the highway once you switch it back to Real Corvette mode.
Chevrolet boasts that the Stingray will be “the most efficient sports car on the market.” It also signals how automakers, responding to shifting driver sentiment, are emphasizing economical and environmental benefits of their vehicles — even America’s Sports Car.
Not that the 455-horsepower Corvette won’t get on down the road. The engine’s efficiency comes at little cost to pavement-pounding power.
Chevrolet takes pains to point out that the Porsche 911 Carrera S puts out a mere 400 horsepower and gets a measly 27 mpg on the highway. Porsche might counter that Chevy fails to note the 22-mpg city and 30-mpg highway rating of the Panamera S Hybrid. (Yes, Porsche makes hybrids.)
The Eco mode breaks the 30-mpg barrier with the addition of Active Four Management, which disables four of the car’s eight fire-breathing cylinders “during light engine loads,” Chevrolet said.
The load, of course, depends entirely on the driver. Don’t expect many Corvettes to cross the 30-mpg barrier in the real world.
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