2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray vs. 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S on Edmunds.com

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray vs. 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S

2013 Porsche 911 Coupe

(3.8L 6-cyl. 7-speed Manual)

The Purveyor of Powerslides vs. the Prince of Precision

  • Comparison Test
  • 2013 Porsche 911 Specs and Performance
  • 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Specs and Performance

The slide, when it finally comes, is a long, predictable and quietly controlled thing.

And in the 911 it's handled with a smidge of countersteer and an equal measure of patience. Certainly Porsche has polished this car's dynamics well beyond what its design merits. But at the end, when the chips are down, stability control is off and you're up against the icy, unforgiving hand of physics, the 911 is still a 911. And it's going to behave like one.

Respecting physics is one of the necessary truths of driving fast cars fast. You'll learn that respect in this Porsche. Yet today's 911 lets its driver delicately dance with physics like few cars made. That the 911 remains composed — stoic, even — during a 150-foot slide at more than 90 mph isn't surprising. What is surprising is that we still love it. Because even when physics plan the way, it's the driver who directs the 911's path.

The fundamental question of this comparison, then, is can the 2014 Chevy Corvette measure up to the Porsche's greatness?

The Primary Target
We've already hailed the thorough competence of the 2014 Corvette Stingray and in the last two weeks it has razed two far more costly and powerful pieces of hardware — the Nissan GT-R and the SRT Viper — in our comparison tests. Chevy makes no secret that Porsche's 911 is the Corvette's primary target, in dynamics, refinement and comfort. So hard-fixed is that goal that a 911 Carrera S equipped with a PDK transmission was the only benchmark car purchased by the C7 team during development.

And that just happens to be the exact configuration of the car you see here. Though this example is thoroughly marinated in Porsche's options bin, it is the car Corvette engineers put in the GM crosshairs. Equipped with $47,000 in add-ons (including the $8,520 carbon-ceramic brakes and $4,050 Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control and Porsche Active Suspension Management), the 911 is, ahem, considerably costlier than the 'Vette. The $4,080 seven-speed PDK auto-manual transmission pushes the price to $144,350.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray vs. 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S

The seven-speed Stingray, though not inexpensive by any standard, is within reach of upper-class mortals. Our test car — outfitted with the $2,800 Z51 package (electronic limited-slip differential, dry-sump lubrication, 19- and 20-inch wheels, lower gear ratios), $8,005 3LT package and $1,195 dual-mode exhaust — totaled $69,375.

Let the games begin.

The Defining Differences
If there's one character trait that most profoundly distinguishes the Stingray from the 911 it's this: torque. And it is here that the big, deep lungs of American displacement score the first hit.

The 'Vette's 140 pound-feet advantage, which arrives 1,000 rpm earlier than the Porsche's torque peak, leaves the 911 driver seeing stars and stripes at every corner exit. The numbers tell the story nicely. Corvette: 465 lb-ft at 4,600 rpm; 911: 325 lb-ft at 5,600 rpm. So it goes without saying that if you're a purveyor of powerslides, the Stingray is your car.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray vs. 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S

What's more, the Corvette's 144 additional cubic inches continue the haymaking well into the rev range where it enjoys a 60 peak horsepower advantage. Its 6.2-liter V8 cranks out 460 ponies to the 3.8-liter 911 flat-6's 400.

But don't even think of writing off the 911. Its recipe for greatness might be more subtle, but it's not lost on anyone who gives it time. There's a coherence to driving the 911 that's only present in a car sharpened by decades of commitment to purpose. And that's what you get here: the promise that no matter how hard you drive it, someone has driven a 911 harder.

In fact, the 911 defined itself in this test as much by what it didn't do as by what it did. Among those feats were the ability to tolerate triple-digit heat without wavering, endure repeated launches without faltering and remain utterly composed throughout it all. The Corvette, partly because it was a preproduction car and partly because it cost half as much, simply lacked the same quiet confidence.

That's Not All
Despite its torque deficit, the 911 still managed to beat the 'Vette in acceleration testing. Its PDK transmission is merciless when it comes to doing important things, like shifting and launching — quickly. It helped produce a 0.3-second advantage in the quarter-mile (12.1 seconds at 114.9 mph vs. 12.4 seconds at 113.7 mph). Sixty miles per hour also arrived 0.3 second sooner in the Porsche, which hit the milestone in 4.0 seconds (3.8 with a 1-foot rollout as on a drag strip). The 'Vette needed 4.3 and 4.1 seconds, respectively.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray vs. 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S

The 911's launch control is unbeatable, and it's the reason Porsche prefers we test cars equipped with PDK transmissions. Even in the real world it's easy to access and use, so there are few downsides. Our test-driver beat the Stingray's launch control fairly easily but still couldn't match the 138-pound-lighter 911.

Full disclosure: The first C7 we tested in Michigan in June was quicker than this 911 in the quarter-mile, but we're not in Michigan anymore. Truth is, the realities of lower-octane fuel (91 vs. 93) and less grip played a role. But those factors were the same for both cars, which were tested on the same day at the same location.

Handling tests, however, favored the Stingray. Its 73.5-mph slalom pass is 2.8 mph better than the 911 could muster. It also eked out a victory over the Porsche on the skid pad, producing 1.05g to the 911's 1.04g. Finally, without the help of carbon-ceramic rotors, the Stingray stopped shorter from 60 mph (99 feet vs. 101 feet).

But it's here, on the track, that the Stingray shows its real merit. Motivated by what is fundamentally a truck engine, it finds speed in places the 911 doesn't. Largely, it's the Stingray's ability to explode away from an apex that earns it the advantage. Performance Traction Management is deadly effective in making the laps both fast and easy. Turning it off, though it will more deeply engage the 'Vette's driver, ups stress without a proportional increase in driving reward.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray vs. 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S

If you want to hoon the 'Vette then, by all means, turn it off, but if you want to go quickly set it to Race Mode, warm the tires and stand on it. So potent are the Stingray's technologies here that they embarrass the Porsche in identical proportion to what happened at the drag strip. Think about the irony in that.

Steering feel and response, next to torque, are the Stingray's biggest allies. There's a confidence in the C7's steering beyond that of most every other sports car made today. Its front end sticks with intractable persistence. For evidence of this you need to look no farther than its front tires, which wear faster than its rears during hard driving.

The 911, for its part, remains an amazing car to drive hard. Its light but direct steering makes no concessions when driven at speed. Its brakes are so utterly capable that we began to think they're actually worth the cost of a nice sport bike. Its balance, communication and honesty at the limit are remarkable. And when it slides — and it will slide — there's both comfort and reward in bringing it back. It's not going to bite you, but there's no denying its fundamentals at the limit.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray vs. 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S

In the end, it's 1 second slower around the 1.6-mile Streets of Willows Springs road course.

Porsche 911 Carrera S: 1:25.6
Corvette Stingray Coupe: 1:24.6

Details Matter
But we don't spend every day at the track or the mountains. The 911, in daily use, comes to life in both observation and expression. It's here that Porsche's resources of refinement exceed Chevy's by an order of magnitude. It's here that the little things take over. Look at the 911. Really look at it. Appreciate its subtle purposefulness. Appreciate a shape honed on the mill of necessity. Now look at the Stingray's details, its ducts, vents and its facets.

They might be functional, but when measured by the yardstick of the equally effective 911, they're also gratuitous.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray vs. 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S

Now get inside the 911. Touch it. Operate its controls. Drive it down the street and notice what you don't hear. Talk to your passenger. Listen to him. Do the same in the 'Vette. Appreciate the 911 with both your senses and your heart. Measure the difference not in numbers but in nuance.

The Daily Grind
Chevy moved mountains in improving the Corvette's interior, but there's still a vast gap between these cars in quality. Everything you touch in the 911 is laser-micrometer precise and right-now responsive. The differences matter. In the 911 you move and it moves with you. In the Stingray you punch the touchscreen twice and wait. You step cleanly into the 911. You descend into, over and around the Corvette. And on a hot day, the 911 smells like leather. The Corvette smells like chemicals.

Ride comfort is a wash. Chevy's magnetorheological dampers are magic and they make the Stingray's ride every bit as refined as the 911's. But you'll compete for your passenger's attention with the Corvette's tire and road noise.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray vs. 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S

If the 911 utterly dominates the Corvette anywhere, it's here, in the ever-important words between the numbers.

What Our Hearts Say
So we're stuck. Stuck with a decision no enthusiast can fairly make. Picking the 'Vette is the obvious choice since it's supported by ample empirical data. At the end of the day, we can't deny that the home team nailed at least one of its primary targets. Making the Corvette as quick and rewarding as a 911 is a big task, and it's been fully accomplished. The Corvette, when driven hard, is as good as the 911, maybe better. There, we said it.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray vs. 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S

That it costs, in this case, less than half as much is pure gravy.

But then there's the undeniable reality that the 911 is the better car. Whether we're taking our kids to school or adding subtle countersteer to correct that big slide, we'd rather have the Porsche. It's the car that wins our hearts so it's the car that wins this test.

The manufacturer provided Edmunds this vehicle for the purposes of evaluation.

Model year2013 Porsche 911
Year Make Model2013 Porsche 911 Carrera S 2dr Coupe (3.8L 6cyl 7AM)
Vehicle TypeRWD 2dr 4-passenger coupe
Base MSRP$97,350
Options on test vehicleRacing Yellow, Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes (PCCB) ($8,520 -- includes cross-drilled, ventilated carbon-fiber/ceramic disc brake system with front six-piston and rear four-piston, yellow-painted brake calipers); Burmester Audio Package ($5,010 -- includes Burmester surround-sound system with 821 watts and 12 independently controlled speakers, 300-watt active subwoofer with class D amplifier; Sirius/XM satellite radio; HD radio receiver; six-disc CD/DVD changer); Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK) ($4,080 -- includes seven-speed Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK) double-clutch transmission with manual steering wheel speedshift and automatic transmission); Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control (PDCC) With PASM ($4,050 -- includes active chassis control system combined with electronically controlled damper system with two manually selectable settings [Standard and Sport] with a reduced ride height of 0.39" [10mm]; aerodynamically adapted front spoiler lip and further extension of automatically deploying rear spoiler); 18-Way Adaptive Sport Seats Plus ($3,825 -- includes driver and front passenger seats with raised side bolsters on seat cushion and extended backrest side bolster for additional shoulder support and with electric adjustments of seat backrest, height, fore/aft position, seat cushion inclination and depth, four-way lumbar support seat cushion side bolster and backrest bolster; electronic height and fore/aft adjustment of steering column); Black Leather Interior ($3,330); Sport Chrono Package ($2,370 -- includes dynamic engine mounts; analog and digital stopwatch); Sports Exhaust System ($2,950 -- includes modified silencers with a pair of dual tube, chrome plated tailpipes and an integrated switch in PCM panel); Premium Package Plus With Adaptive Sport Seats Plus ($2,330 -- includes automatically-dimming mirrors; Porsche Dynamic Light System [PDLS] includes dynamic cornering lights, speed-dependent headlight range control, adverse weather function and headlight washing system; 18-way adaptive sport seats, driver memory, electric tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel adjustment; heated and ventilated front seats; Porsche Entry & Drive; Light Design Package includes additional dimmable ambient LED lighting); Sport Seats Plus Backrests Shell in Leather ($1,870); Air Vent Slats Painted ($1,710); Black-Painted Wheels ($1,635); 20-Inch Sport Techno Wheel ($1,355); Park Assist Front and Rear ($990 -- includes parking aid with ultrasonic sensors integrated in the bumpers); Interior Package Painted ($665); Seatbelts in Racing Yellow ($540); SportDesign Steering Wheel ($490); Rear Windshield Wiper ($360); Car Key Painted ($335); Headlight Cleaning System Cover Painted in Exterior Color ($295); Center Console Trim Painted ($290).
As-tested MSRP$144,350
Assembly locationStuttgart, Germany
Engine typeNaturally aspirated, direct-injected flat-6, gasoline with auto stop-start
Displacement (cc/cu-in)3,800/232
Block/head materialAluminum/aluminum
ValvetrainDOHC, 4 valves per cylinder, variable intake-valve timing
Compression ratio (x:1)12.5
Redline, indicated (rpm)7,600
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)400 @ 7,400
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)325 @ 5,600
Fuel typePremium unleaded (required)
Transmission typeSeven-speed automated manual
Transmission ratios (x:1)I=3.91, II=2.29, III=1.55, IV=1.30, V=1.08, VI=0.88, VII= 0.71
Final-drive ratio (x:1)3.44
Differential(s)Electonically controlled clutch-type limited-slip
Suspension, frontIndependent MacPherson struts, coil springs, driver-adjustable two-mode variable dampers, trailing links, self-adjusting active, stabilizer bar
Suspension, rearIndependent multilink, coil springs, driver-adjustable two-mode variable dampers, trailing links, self-adjusting, active stabilizer bar
Steering typeElectric speed-proportional power steering
Steering ratio (x:1)12.25 - 16.6
Tire make and modelPirelli P Zero
Tire typePerformance front and rear
Tire size, front245/35/ZR20 91Y
Tire size, rear305/30ZR20 103Y
Wheel size, front20-by-8.5 inches
Wheel size, rear20-by-11 inches
Wheel materialAlloy
Brakes, front13.4-inch two-piece ventilated cross-drilled carbon-ceramic discs with 6-piston fixed calipers
Brakes, rear13-inch two-piece ventilated cross-drilled carbon-ceramic discs with 4-piston fixed calipers
Track Test Results
Acceleration, 0-30 mph (sec.)1.6
0-45 mph (sec.)2.7
0-60 mph (sec.)4.0
0-75 mph (sec.)5.7
1/4-mile (sec. @ mph)12.1 @ 114.9
0-60 with 1 foot of rollout (sec.)3.8
0-30 mph, trac ON (sec.)2.1
0-45 mph, trac ON (sec.)3.3
0-60 mph, trac ON (sec.)4.9
0-75 mph, trac ON (sec.)6.5
1/4-mile, trac ON (sec. @ mph)12.8 @ 112.6
0-60, trac ON with 1 foot of rollout (sec.)4.6
Braking, 30-0 mph (ft.)26
60-0 mph (ft.)101
Slalom, 6 x 100 ft. (mph)70.7
Slalom, 6 x 100 ft. (mph) ESC ON69.6
Skid pad, 200-ft. diameter (lateral g)1.02
Skid pad, 200-ft. diameter (lateral g) ESC ON1.04
Road course lap time (sec.)1:25.6
Sound level @ idle (dB)51.1
@ Full throttle (dB)97.0
@ 70 mph cruise (dB)68.1
Engine speed @ 70 mph (rpm)1,750
Test Driver Ratings & Comments
Acceleration commentsPorsche's Launch Control is refreshingly simple: Press the Sport Plus button, left foot on brake, console lever in Drive, then floor throttle. Revs rise to 6,200 rpm, foot off brake and then it gets out of the hole like a rocket. Minimal spin, just lots of forward thrust and ultra-quick upshifts from the PDK system. Engine sounds fantastic, especially with the exhaust button pressed. Manual shifting is via console lever (pull back for downshifts) or paddle shifters. Blips throttle on downshifts, will hold gears to rev limiter if not at full throttle.
Braking commentsThe pedal was a bit softer and had longer travel than expected, but there's plenty of feel as the tires grip the pavement. Near-zero nosedive and no wiggle whatsoever. Short, consistent distances. First stop was longest at 104 feet, the sixth and final stop was shortest at 101 feet.
Handling commentsSlalom: The 911 was terrific as usual around the cones, but even with the suspension set to stiff, there was a bit more understeer than we remembered from previous tests. Perhaps it was due to the larger size ratio between the front and rear tires on this test car, with 305s at the rear. But a planted yet nimble car for sure, and with an appreciatively high stability control intervention point. Skid pad: Any time a car manages over 1.0g of grip, it's impressive. But what's most cool about the 911 around the skid pad is how you literally steer it with just the throttle, no need to alter the steering. It's that sensitive, in a good way.
Testing Conditions
Test date8/20/2013
Elevation (ft.)1,121
Temperature (F)79.0
Relative humidity (%)50.0
Barometric pressure (in. Hg)28.87
Wind (mph, direction)2.0, crosswind
Odometer (mi.)7,926
Fuel used for test91 octane
As-tested tire pressures, f/r (psi)31/34
Fuel Consumption
EPA fuel economy (mpg)22 combined/19 city/27 highway
Edmunds observed (mpg)18.4
Fuel tank capacity (U.S. gal.)16.9
Driving range (mi.)456.3
Audio and Advanced Technology
Stereo descriptionBurmester surround-sound system with 821 watts and 12 independently controlled speakers, 300-watt active subwoofer with class D amplifier; Sirius/XM Satellite Radio; HD radio receiver; 6-disc CD/DVD changer
iPod/digital media compatibilityStandard iPod via USB jack, Bluetooth streaming
Satellite radioOptional Sirius/XM with 3-month trial subscription
Bluetooth phone connectivityStandard
Navigation systemOptional hard drive
Smart entry/StartStandard ignition, doors
Parking aidsOptional parking sonar front and rear
Dimensions & Capacities
Curb weight, mfr. claim (lbs.)3,075
Curb weight, as tested (lbs.)3,305
Weight distribution, as tested, f/r (%)39/61
Length (in.)176.8
Width (in.)71.2
Height (in.)51.0
Wheelbase (in.)96.5
Track, front (in.)60.3
Track, rear (in.)59.8
Turning circle (ft.)36.4
Seating capacity4
GVWR (lbs.)4,034
Bumper-to-bumper4 years/50,000 miles
Powertrain4 years/50,000 miles
Corrosion12 years/Unlimited miles
Roadside assistance4 years/50,000 miles
Model year2014 Chevrolet Corvette
Year Make Model2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51 2dr Coupe (6.2L 8cyl 7M)
Vehicle TypeRWD 2dr 2-passenger coupe
Base MSRP$54,795
Options on test vehicleBlade Silver Metallic, Custom Sill Plates With Stingray Logo, Preferred Equipment Group ($8,005 -- includes standard equipment; Bose advanced 10-speaker system with bass box; HD Radio with additional 9 months of Sirius/XM Satellite Radio service (1 year total); Memory Package with recall for 2 driver "presets" for 8-way power seat, outside mirrors and tilt-and-telescoping steering column; frameless, auto-dimming inside rearview mirror; Universal Home Remote with garage door opener and three programmable channels (located on driver visor); heated and ventilated driver and passenger seats with power bolster and lumbar; head-up display with color readouts for street mode, track mode with g-meter, vehicle speed, engine rpm; cargo net and luggage shade; theft -deterrent system for body content security and unauthorized electrical entry; body-color, heated, power-adjustable outside mirrors with driver-side auto-dimming; navigation with 3D maps; premium leather-wrapped leather instrument panel, center console and door panels; perforated napa leather seating surfaces), Visible Carbon-Fiber Roof Panel ($1,995 -- includes removable, visible carbon-fiber roof panel with body-color surround), Magnetic Selective Ride Control ($1,795 -- includes Magnetic Selective Ride Control; Performance Traction Management), Dual-Mode Performance Exhaust ($1,195 -- includes dual-mode performance exhaust with additional horsepower, aggressive exhaust sound and 4-inch polished stainless-steel tips ), Carbon-Fiber Interior Appearance Package ($995 -- includes carbon-fiber instrument panel trim), 19" x 8.5" Front and 20" x 10.0" Rear Black Aluminum Wheels ($495), Carbon Flash-Painted Rear Spoiler and Outside Mirrors ($100)
As-tested MSRP$69,375
Assembly locationBowling Green, Kentucky
North American parts content (%)100
ConfigurationLongitudinal, front midengine, rear-wheel drive
Engine typeNaturally aspirated, direct-injected V8, gasoline with cylinder deactivation
Displacement (cc/cu-in)6,162cc (376 cu-in)
Block/head materialAluminum/aluminum
ValvetrainPushrod, 2 valves per cylinder, variable intake + exhaust-valve timing
Compression ratio (x:1)11.5
Redline, indicated (rpm)6,500
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)460 @ 6,000
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)465 @ 4,600
Fuel typePremium unleaded (recommended)
Transmission typeSeven-speed manual with automated rev-matching
Transmission ratios (x:1)I=2.97, II=2.07, III=1.43, IV=1.0, V=0.71, VI=0.57, VII=0.48
Final-drive ratio (x:1)3.42
Differential(s)Electronically controlled clutch-type limited slip
Suspension, frontIndependent double wishbones, transverse leaf spring, self-adjusting magnetorheological dampers, stabilizer bar
Suspension, rearIndependent double wishbones, transverse leaf spring, self-adjusting magnetorheological dampers, stabilizer bar
Steering typeElectric-assist, speed-proportional, variable-ratio rack-and-pinion
Steering ratio (x:1)17:1 to 12:1
Tire make and modelMichelin Pilot Super Sport ZP
Tire typeAsymmetrical, high-performance summer performance
Tire size, frontP245/35ZR19 89Y
Tire size, rearP285/30ZR20 95Y
Wheel size, front19-by-8.5 inches
Wheel size, rear20-by-10 inches
Wheel materialAluminum
Brakes, front13.6-inch one-piece ventilated slotted cast-iron discs with four-piston fixed calipers
Brakes, rear13.3-inch one-piece ventilated slotted cast-iron discs with four-piston fixed calipers
Track Test Results
Acceleration, 0-30 mph (sec.)1.9
0-45 mph (sec.)2.9
0-60 mph (sec.)4.3
0-75 mph (sec.)6.0
1/4-mile (sec. @ mph)12.4 @ 113.7
0-60 with 1 foot of rollout (sec.)4.1
0-30 mph, trac ON (sec.)2.0
0-45 mph, trac ON (sec.)3.0
0-60 mph, trac ON (sec.)4.4
0-75 mph, trac ON (sec.)6.1
1/4-mile, trac ON (sec. @ mph)12.42 @ 113.96
0-60, trac ON with 1 foot of rollout (sec.)4.1
Braking, 30-0 mph (ft.)25
60-0 mph (ft.)99
Slalom, 6 x 100 ft. (mph)73.5
Slalom, 6 x 100 ft. (mph) ESC ON70.9
Skid pad, 200-ft. diameter (lateral g)1.05
Skid pad, 200-ft. diameter (lateral g) ESC ON1.00
Road course lap time (sec.)84.55
Sound level @ idle (dB)51.8
@ Full throttle (dB)88.8
@ 70 mph cruise (dB)72.2
Engine speed @ 70 mph (rpm)1,500
Test Driver Ratings & Comments
Acceleration commentsLaunch control did a good job of regulating wheelspin, yet it hardly made a difference from a data perspective. A near-bog no-wheelspin run essentially matched it and I beat it by a couple tenths with traction control shut off. I tried various amounts of spin and they all produced shockingly similar and highly consistent results. I did try the no-lift-shift feature and as cool as it is because it's typically forbidden, in reality it is no quicker than my usual shifts. The short gearing forces a 1-2 shift prior to 60 mph and even requires a shift to 4th for the quarter-mile. The Stingray is quick (quicker than C6 base coupe), sounds glorious, but it falls short of OMG-fast. I guess that's what a Z06 and ZR1 will be for.
Braking commentsInitially firm pedal feel ends with a little squish at the end of its short travel. The shortest stopping distance occurred on the seventh stop, proving these brakes have plenty of thermal capacity. Straight, steady, no drama.
Handling commentsSlalom: After I had dialed in the mode(s) that best suited my preferred feedback and the demands of slalom test (Track, Sport 2), then it became a matter of chipping away at the times with subtle techniques that exploited the car's electronic aids as well as the limits. It's easy to discover the limits and either avoid them or step right over them and file it in the manifest of things the Stingray does or doesn't want to do. I especially appreciated the crystal-clear and highly precise steering, the zippy turn-in, the progressive break-away of the tires and the sophisticated traction control on exit that doesn't merely chop the throttle, but stutters it to maintain momentum and direction. Although I couldn't hear it (like in the Nissan GT-R), I could sense the diff hard at work sorting out which side of the car needed/wanted power at every moment. Immensely capable and highly accessible performance without the C6's vaguely threatening demeanor. Wow. Skid pad: Absolutely nutty amount of grip for a road (not race) car. Steering remains informative and precise despite the tremendous loads. The Stingray will either under- or oversteer at will, which speaks to its impressive balance. With ESC fully on, the throttle fades out right before the car would need more driver involvement (e.g. steering and/or throttle modulation) to go any quicker. It's likely a "civilian" wouldn't even notice this happening at 1g. Impressive.
Testing Conditions
Test date8/20/2013
Elevation (ft.)1,121
Temperature (F)91
Relative humidity (%)28.00
Barometric pressure (in. Hg)28.81
Wind (mph, direction)3, headwind
Odometer (mi.)1,621
Fuel used for test91 octane
As-tested tire pressures, f/r (psi)30/30
Fuel Consumption
EPA fuel economy (mpg)21 combined/17 city/29 highway
Edmunds observed (mpg)15.9 (20.5 best/worst 12.8)
Fuel tank capacity (U.S. gal.)18.5
Driving range (mi.)536.5
Audio and Advanced Technology
Stereo description10-speaker Bose audio system with bass enclosure
iPod/digital media compatibilityGeneric aux jack, multiple iPod via USB (3)
Satellite radioStandard with 1 year of Sirius included
Bluetooth phone connectivityStandard with phone and audio streaming
Navigation systemOptional with traffic, 8-inch display screen (measured diagonally)
Telematics (OnStar, etc.)Standard OnStar
Smart entry/StartStandard ignition/doors/trunk/hatch
Parking aidsStandard rearview camera
Dimensions & Capacities
Curb weight, mfr. claim (lbs.)3,298
Curb weight, as tested (lbs.)3,443
Weight distribution, as tested, f/r (%)49.8/50.2
Length (in.)176.9
Width (in.)73.9
Height (in.)48.8
Wheelbase (in.)106.7
Track, front (in.)62.9
Track, rear (in.)61.7
Legroom, front (in.)43.0
Headroom, front (in.)37.9
Shoulder room, front (in.)55.2
Seating capacity2
Trunk volume (cu-ft)15
Bumper-to-bumper3 years/36,000 miles
Powertrain5 years/100,000 miles
Corrosion6 years/100,000 miles
Roadside assistance5 years/100,000 miles
Free scheduled maintenance2 years/24,000 miles


  • bankerdanny bankerdanny Posts:

    Why is the Corvette engine "fundamentally a truck engine?" Because it has pushrods? That term conjurs up visions of heavy, course, inefficient engines, none of which this engine is. The 'Vette engine may share architecture and components with GM's truck engines, but it itself is NOT a 'truck engine'.

  • mmmm4 mmmm4 Posts:

    It cost's half as much. It's like saying a GTI is not as good as an M3 only if the GTI can beat it on the track. The corvette is an amazing accomplishment. You can only exploit these things on the track anyway. In that sense, you just paid for all the fuel and tires you want, which will even make you better than the porsche driver.

  • Impressive showing for the Stingray. This test should've been against a 7 speed MT Carrera S. But I know Stuttgart isn't going to let that happen. The Stingray would've also proven superior in acceleration times in that head-to-head. In this case, I have a feeling that the acceleration times, despite the 911's incredible PDK and rear weight bias, would've been closer had the temperature not been 12 degrees hotter for the 'ray (91 degrees). Calling the LT1 "essentially a truck engine" shows a lack of journalistic integrity here - are you now somehow suggesting that the engine is crude? It's no more an engine related to truck duties than a 20" alloy rim option on a Silverado is related to a Stingray's Z51 performance package. Most impressive is the Stingray's superiority in on-track traction, braking, handling, and steering, this despite a noticeably taller ride height, smaller tires, slower tranny, and body roll. When the Z06 (7?) is released with a stance more similar to the 911 CS (and hopefully a short-throw MT or a DCT), this will be no comparison at all... As for the 911 being a car with a superior interior and intangibles (suspect journalism again) - it'd better be! The car is $144,000! That's crazy money.

  • psayre psayre Posts:

    I've always, ALWAYS despised American cars...horrible, uncivilized, tossed together crap. But this Vette , with it's glowing reviews from many different publications, might just be the car that changes that. Of COURSE the 911 is the Better Car overall...at a Base Price damned near twice what GM asks for a Corvette...it HAS to be. I've been in Porsche's..and it is the little things that make the difference...I really believe Porsche Spends as much engineering the feel and functionality of a window button as most MFG's Spend on something like a Suspension. If you've never been in a Porsche...try it, you'll understand why these things are so damned much money. That Said...Porsche has gotten STUPID with the pricing. They've always been more than a typical car...usually $10-20K more than a comparable Vette over the years...but they are slowly pricing themselves out of the Enthusiast Market; even a Cayman S equipped with only Sporting essentials is over $70,000. Porsche seems to be heading towards the Poseur Pricing the Italians seem to covet, and thats not very Porsche like.

  • tempesting_ tempesting_ Posts:

    This reminds me of a Top gear episode, R8 vs Corvette. Jeremy Clarkson "You'd me mad to buy a Corvette over an R8 but that's why you should"

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  • speed12sil speed12sil Posts:

    That new car smell in any car? Chemical gas from all that plastic. I don't know how you can say this as a strike against GM when it's the same for every other car.

  • duck87 duck87 Posts:

    This is pretty much the same story generation after generation. The Corvette offers similar performance for significantly less money; but if you want the measure of luxury and the last tenth of the touchy-feely stuff that makes driving enjoyable, the 911 is still the way to go. This time, however, the gap is a lot smaller than it has been for a long time. How about splitting the difference and getting a Cayman?

  • vettelt193 vettelt193 Posts:

    Here's another comment regarding the "truck engine". If memory is correct the small block chevy was developed for the Corvette and Bel Air. It was offered on the truck because they developed it for the car line, not the other way around.

  • ttss ttss Posts:

    I have a quite a few problems with this review. Since the 80s, it's been popular to lambast the Corvette for its inferior interior and seats. Finally, the C7 gets it right and gives you a quality interior for the money and great seats. Ask Matt Farah of The Smoking Tire who drove an F-Type just before testing the C7 and said the C7 interior is in the same class and he actually prefers it. Having said all that, you are comparing a preproduction C7 to a production 911! You're complaining about tire and road noise. How about you get a production C7, compare again, and THEN you can complain about the tire and road noise, the quality of the interior, and the chemical smell, if any or all of those still bother you? Aside from the interior, no one ever questioned the performance of the Corvette. It's handling was good and steering feel was OK, at best, but there were other players out there who bested it in those areas, especially the 911. For generations, the 911 always, somehow, handled better and had superior feedback. Corvette wasn't the only victim, though. Now, with the C7, they have finally built a machine that not just goes fast in the straight, but it's handling and steering feel is as good or better than the 911! That's huge. If MT was running this test (and it will appear in their magazine this month or next) or if MT was judging on which one is a better driver's car, they would pick the C7. To me, that's all that matters. You have to toss road noise and your interior criticisms aside, until a production C7 is ready. But as far as I'm concerned, the C7 is the better driver's car.

  • ttss ttss Posts:

    The other criticism I failed to mention is the C7 is more of a competitor with the Cayman/Boxster, not the 911. You have tested it against other more expensive cars, true. But the question is does the interior and fit and finish measure up to a 60K-70K car and how does it perform as a driver's car, measuring attributes such as steering feedback, brake feedback, thickness of steering wheel, handling, balance, bodyroll, oversteer/understeer, cornering, entry/exit, ride, seating, and outward visibility.

  • in reference to the Stingray's vents: Edmonds: "They might be functional, but when measured by the yardstick of the equally effective 911, they're also gratuitous." This statement is laughable. I agree that in some color schemes the 'ray would look more refined and upscale if the vents/slats were body color. Consider the facts that render this quote baseless: The stingray has less thermally efficient steel brake rotors compared to the 911'a extremely exotic brakes, and yet it outperforms the 911 in braking thanks in part to the vents and ducting. The Stingray's transaxle and differential, which succeed in achieving superior power transfer after exiting an apex, benefit from the vent designs as well. If you, as a journalist, have the empirical data to prove that those design elements on the 'vette have no statistically significant impact on the systems for which they were designed, then I'll concede that they are "gratuitous". I doubt very highly that you can produce that data. Additionally, the reduced front end lift, documented aerodynamic advantages (a lower drag coefficient on the 'ray), the mpg advantage despite greater engine power, and the racing record of the similarly equipped C6.R racecar, point to functional excellence in the details you suddenly criticize.

  • crossofiron crossofiron Posts:

    Oh come on now. Did you guys sit down at the desk to find a way to justify the crazy high price. What dummy on your staff thinks that if Chevy doubled the price could they make the interior "laser" sharp. Both are great cars and I admire everything about the newer 911s EXCEPT the price. I rate your review a utter FAIL! Jamokes one and all. I see how you clowns dress, and I bet you will NOT be purchasing a $150,000 911, but I bet you may be able to actually OWN a C7.

  • bankerdanny bankerdanny Posts:

    @TTSS: Are they testing with a pre-production Vette? I don't think so. it's a production car, just not the one that will be entering the long-term fleet.

  • rivernile rivernile Posts:

    Porsche is the most profitable car company (yes, I know it is owned by VW and it not its own company anymore). I may not be an economist, but if my understanding is correct, Profit = Selling Price - Production Cost. This simple math goes to show that the production cost of Porsche is not as much as they make out to be.

  • rvera rvera Posts:

    This outcome doesn't surprise me. The 911 has evolved much more progressively and faster than the Darwinian pace of the Corvette. Nonetheless, this new 'Vette is a huge leap forward for the General as they seem to have finally nailed everything, interior included. Now although the 911 is the go-to competitor for Corvette—that and Viper—what I would really like is a shootout between the Chevrolet and the Porsche that people are genuinely going to cross shop with, the Cayman S. Despite what you motor journalists may think, price does matter—a lot—and with the 911 Carrera S being $5k more expensive than double the Corvette's MSRP is ALMOST irrelevant. Why not BR-Z vs. Corvette, or Miata vs. 911? Silly, right? Although not as extreme, it's almost as silly as shootout.

  • "motivated by what is basically a truck engine"... Why not mention then that the 911 is motivated by what WAS basically a Beetle engine? Originally it was an air cooled boxer configuration. Like the Beetle that it was based from. Moving along.. the Stingray smells like chemicals on a hot day because it's bodywork is not made of metal like the 911, but from some sort of composite. I know they used to be made from fiberglass, not sure if that is still the case.

  • @bankerdanny - it was a pre-production vehicle. Edmonds said so themselves in the article...

  • noburgers noburgers Posts:

    For that price, the 911 better win. I was almost sure you were going to come up with the same conclusion as the test against the GT-R. I guess this time you do get what you pay for. In the long run, a buyer is going to pick a price point and get the car they can afford and suits their needs best. That would make me a C7 guy, well at least a used one in a few years when the kids all move out.

  • noburgers noburgers Posts:

    @exterro I think Edmunds would find that the Z07 would beat all the 911's track numbers, still have an inferior interior, and take 2nd. I guarantee you that a custom shop could turn the stingray interior into a dream for a total cost way under that of th

  • bankerdanny bankerdanny Posts:

    @exterrobrand: it says that where? I just re-read the article 3x and didn't see any mention of the tested car being a pre-production model.

  • jeepsrt jeepsrt Posts:

    @bankerdanny "The Corvette, partly because it was a preproduction car and partly because it cost half as much, simply lacked the same quiet confidence."

  • bankerdanny bankerdanny Posts:

    Thanks jeepsrt. Even knowing what I was looking for it took me a couple minutes to find that sentence.

  • noburgers: "I think Edmunds would find that the Z07 would beat all the 911's track numbers, still have an inferior interior, and take 2nd. I guarantee you that a custom shop could turn the stingray interior into a dream for a total cost way under that of the 911, if the interior was your only deal breaker. That would be a big win, AND give you a one-of-a-kind car." @noburgers - agreed on all points. However I don't think there's that much to do on the interior - other reviewers have said as much. If the 'Ray had a DCT, or if the 911 tested had a manual, Corvette would have won in every performance category.

  • fordson1 fordson1 Posts:

    So the $101k Viper is not better than the$70k C7...and the $117k GT-R is not better than the $70k C7...but the $144k Carrera S is better than the $70k C7. OK, now we know the value proposition. Congratulations, Chevy.

  • bobd2013 bobd2013 Posts:

    In a comparison that should involve data only, you allowed your hearts to dictate your winner in this latest comparison. That I feel is wrong. I feel that when two cars of this magnitude are put to the test, the clear winner should be the one laying down the numbers that win the challenge. You put these two, head-to-head, with the idea that Chevy spoke of it's drive to better the Porsche in performance. The Corvette has done that and in your closing statement, you clearly allowed your heart to make the decision. You knew going into the challenge , that the corvette has no back seat. You knew going in that the Vette was also half the cost of the 911. The cost alone tells me that Chevy definitely did what it intended to do and that was better the 911 in the performance arena, and did so at half the price. I am sure we can all sit and agree that the Porsche may be a quieter in the interior, may be a little more refined in its controls, and even may smell like leather in the hot sun when the car is opened. But that doesn't make it the winner by any stretch. The intention of the comparison was performance and the Porsche clearly lost. I am sure if chevy spent the additional money to address the interior sound levels and chemical smell, it still wouldn't cost but maybe 60% of what a Porsche owner has to lay out for the right to take ownership. To see American cars compete in the same performance arena as the European models and match the competition (and in this case BEAT the competition), just tells me that its a win. Now you should be correcting your write up and acknowledging the win that Chevy has earned the right to hear. If you just reread your write up in these two cars, you will clearly see that the winner should be the Corvette. You say it in the write up, but in the end just don't want to admit it. This type of opinion based conclusion makes me wonder if all comparisons done by Edmunds are fact based.

  • belias belias Posts:

    I've never been a fan of either the Vette or the 911, but for different reasons. The Vette, while capable, never felt like a "complete" car... its interior looked like GM gave up on doing anything remotely appealing to an adult, its ride rough, seats were an afterthought, and though it was considered "raw" by many Vette enthusiasts, I'd have to say that it utterly lacked refinement in almost every area. The Porsche on the other hand was always a beautiful driving car with great materials, superb handling and an incredible driver's feel. Refinement inside was superb with great materials, seating position and quality. What bugged me most is just the laziness of the overall exterior design. It seems like all Porsche does is lower, widen and flatten the design of their older models. I don't know of any other car company that just refuses to acknowledge that a bow tie and grease in the hair is just not all that in style anymore. So while it functions well, it is an extremely ugly car by today's standards. Porsche seems bent on playing it safe in every respect while charging astronomical prices for their products. But I don't see that gamble working long-term save for a niche market. They need to make large design changes to attract new buyers and they need to take some risks with exterior design. For almost $150K they better do something radical. In my book, this new Vette demolishes the 911... not because of performance and specs or testing, but because GM -- a company known for being pretty lazy and subdued in their designs -- actually took a huge risk in upping the ante on what a real sports car should be like and what it can do. Much better interior and exterior than the outgoing model while still being probably the best value in the market today. I wish they would apply this energy to all their other vehicles (it looks like it is catching on with Cadillac and vehicles like the Impala as well). Porsche could certainly learn a few things from the new Vette -- if only their pride/ego doesn't get in the way...

  • loopsdoop loopsdoop Posts:

    Consider this this example of the porsche 911 costs around 80K more that the corvette, Tha base 911 costs 85 k so in essence you can buy a 911 and corvette for the price of the fully loaded 911 s, Options be damned I'd rather have both base cars for the same money. think about it you visit your friends in New jersey, bring the corvette, if you are visiting your friends in greenwich CT, you bring the 911.

  • If two cars are almost equal shouldn't the one with the... I don't know... 60% lower MSRP win?! I guess what your heart desires is just way more objective. Good job.

  • Porsches are expensive but well worth the money if you restrict options. I got my 2013 Boxster S for 63 k with the beautiful Guards red paint, premium package with 14-way heated power seats with memory, dual zone climate control, xenons, Bose and a few other options and that wonderful manual transmission. Build quality is exceptional. No defects, no quality issues and nothing is cheap about the interior. Driving dynamics are superb. Best car I have owned. I don't know about the new Corvette but it sure looks attractive. The Boxster S is beautifully balanced and I hope the Corvette is as well. Great choices for sports cars enthusiasts. Can't go wrong with either or the Cayman S.The 911 is a lot more money, 2 Boxsters worth.

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