Used 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Coupe
- Relentless V8 power
- impressive handling and braking
- upgraded interior with new electronic features
- roomy cargo area
- nifty rev-match manual transmission.
- Automatic transmission can't match shift speed of rivals' automated manual gearboxes.
Used 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Coupe for Sale
Edmunds' Expert Review
Sure, it will still do endless burnouts if you want it to. But with newfound interior refinement and up-to-date electronic features, the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette is now a more appealing and well-rounded choice for a sports car.
Recently, we were making small talk with a top engineer from an import luxury automaker and asked him what his personal car was. We expected him to have some sort of flawlessly crafted über-machine parked in his garage. C63. M3. 911. That kind of thing. Instead, he said he had a Corvette. He paused, perhaps noting our perplexed look. "I love all that torque," he added in his thickly accented English, using his hand to imitate his foot pressing down on a gas pedal.
Corvette: Who knew it was America's biggest automotive export for guilty pleasure entertainment?
But with the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray ("Stingray" is once again part of the Corvette name), there might not be much guilt associated with the pleasure anymore. Oh sure, this redesigned Corvette still has the bonkers V8 power, massive tires, outlandish grip and the "look at me!" styling that makes a Vette a Vette. But Chevrolet has addressed many of the car's less appealing qualities, at least in the context of other world-class sports cars.
Action item number one: interior quality. This was the previous Corvette's biggest letdown, and we're pleased to report it's gotten the most attention from Chevy's designers. The materials used are of higher quality, and prominent leather stitching lends a premium vibe. Also improved are the seats, which are more supportive for aggressive driving. Chevy is even offering optional performance seats this time around, which offer even more bolstering. Finally, the overall design is more driver-focused and highlighted by a bigger main touchscreen that supports the brand's latest MyLink electronics interface.
Further refinement is found in regards to the Corvette Stingray's mechanical bits. There's a more rigid body structure now made from aluminum, which improves crash-worthiness, handling precision and the convertible model's overall feeling of solidity. As for the heart of the Corvette, the revised 6.2-liter V8 engine develops 455 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque, a bit more than before. But new direct fuel-injection technology broadens power throughout the rev range, while cylinder deactivation helps boost fuel economy. A seven-speed manual transmission with automatic rev-matching is new, too.
Add this all up and you're looking at the most complete and refined Corvette yet. Comparison shopped against the likes of the upcoming BMW M4, Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG or Porsche Boxster or Cayman, the Corvette Stingray promises dominating performance and competitive levels of refinement. It's also an intriguing alternative to more expensive sports cars like the Nissan GT-R and SRT Viper.
What we have here is finally a Corvette without the apologies. And we're pretty sure that translates quite easily into any language.
Trim levels & features
The 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray is currently available as a coupe or convertible.
There are two main trim levels, base and Z51. Within each, however, there are three sub-trims: 1LT, 2LT and 3LT. The base Corvette 1LT comes standard with 18-inch front wheels and 19-inch rear wheels, xenon headlights, heated mirrors, a removable roof panel (coupe), a power-operated soft top (convertible), dual-zone automatic climate control, cruise control, keyless ignition and entry, leather upholstery, eight-way power front seats and a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel. Electronic features include OnStar, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, an 8-inch touchscreen display, Chevy's MyLink electronics interface, a rearview camera and a nine-speaker Bose sound system with two USB ports, an auxiliary audio jack, an SD card reader and satellite radio.
The Corvette Stingray Z51 1LT further adds 19-inch front/20-inch rear wheels, exterior aero trim, performance brakes and suspension tuning, revised transmission gear ratios (manual transmission only), a limited-slip electronic rear differential, a rear differential cooler and dry-sump oiling for the V8 engine.
All Corvette Stingray 2LT models come with auto-dimming driver-side and rearview mirrors, a 10-speaker sound system with HD radio, a head-up display, a cargo shade, driver memory settings, heated and ventilated seats and power lumbar seat adjustments. The 3LT is the same but with upgraded leather upholstery and a navigation system.
For the Corvette Z51, adaptive suspension dampers are optional and come bundled with an upgraded traction management system. Other options for the whole Corvette Stingray line include a dual-mode exhaust system and competition-style seats (late availability). All coupes come with a painted and removable carbon-fiber roof panel, and if you choose, you can order your roof panel either with exposed carbon fiber or transparent.
Performance & mpg
Under the Corvette's hood is a 6.2-liter V8 driving the rear wheels. Maximum power is 455 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque -- up from 436 and 428 last year, respectively. Don't be unimpressed by what appear to be modest power gains, though; the new engine adds roughly 50 lb-ft of torque below 4,000 rpm over the outgoing model. The optional dual-mode exhaust further provides a slight power boost to 460 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque. Putting this to the ground is a seven-speed manual transmission or a six-speed automatic.
The new V8 now features direct fuel injection, variable valve timing and cylinder deactivation. EPA-estimated fuel economy is impressive at 21 mpg combined (17 mpg city/29 mpg highway) with the manual transmission. The automatic is rated at 20 mpg combined (16 mpg city/28 mpg highway).
The new manual transmission uses the same gear ratios as the previous car, with the 7th gear acting as a tall cruising gear to incrementally improve fuel economy. The manual also comes with automatic rev-matching for upshifts and downshifts, which greatly simplifies and smoothes out shifting during enthusiastic driving. The automatic transmission, meanwhile, represents a modest revision of the previous Corvette's automatic.
In Edmunds testing, a Corvette Z51 with the manual transmission accelerated from zero to 60 mph in an impressively quick 4.1 seconds. Both transmissions feature a launch control mode. It works well enough, but it's more of a novelty than a true performance aid, as we found that it allowed too much wheelspin in our manual-shift Z51 test car.
Standard safety features on the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray include antilock disc brakes, traction and stability control, side-impact airbags and a rearview camera. Also standard is OnStar, which includes automatic crash notification, on-demand roadside assistance, remote door unlocking and stolen vehicle assistance.
In Edmunds brake testing, a Corvette Z51 took just 93 feet to stop from 60 mph: the shortest distance we've ever recorded.
The 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray is outlandishly quick and capable of generating such fierce acceleration that you'll be forgiven if you erroneously think that Chevy secretly strapped a rocket motor underneath the car. The V8, especially with the optional dual-mode exhaust, sounds so glorious under full throttle that you'll want to uncork at every tunnel or highway underpass opportunity.
The new manual transmission shifts easily, and the automatic rev-matching feature, while not as quick-acting as hoped, is still a nice bonus. Less impressive is the automatic. It's not that much different from the way it was before, and it's a viable option if you don't want to deal with a clutch pedal. But given how much the rest of the car has improved, it seems like a liability given that it can't match the rapid-fire gearchanges of the automated manual transmissions offered by competitors.
Chevy promised that the car's stiffer frame, revised suspension tuning and new tires would improve the Corvette's handling and steering feel. Mission accomplished. The 2014 Corvette's steering provides excellent feel and response and the grip is extraordinary. In fact, we recorded Corvette-all-time-best limit-handling figures at our test track with a Z51-equipped Stingray. The adjustable traction and stability control systems also allow drivers to approach the car's handling limits safely. And just like previous Corvettes, the Stingray excels as a long-distance grand touring car thanks to its comfortable seating and compliant suspension tuning.
Chevrolet put in a lot of effort to improve this year's Corvette interior. The overall design is more driver-centric now, and the more prominent and canted center stack helps promote a jetfighter-like cockpit vibe. In that center control stack is a new 8-inch touchscreen display that uses Chevrolet's latest MyLink electronics interface, which includes smartphone integration for audio apps like Pandora and Stitcher. There's also a new customizable display in the gauge cluster. Both are valuable additions, although the main touchscreen can occasionally be slow to respond.
The quality of the materials is higher now, with a greater use of soft-touch materials and more prominent display of leather stitching. Even more important are the new seats; they're more rigid and supportive this time around, and the newly optional competition-style seats should appease drivers who felt the previous seats didn't provide enough lateral support during hard cornering.
Another bonus is the coupe's 15-cubic-foot hatchback cargo area that offers enough space for luggage, groceries or golf clubs, although it's not as easy to hide or secure those items as it is in rival sports cars with true trunks. As for the Stingray convertible, its power-operated top motors down in about 20 seconds, and its trunk measures 10 cubic feet.
Features & Specs
More About This Model
If he weren't so polite, Alex MacDonald, chassis control performance engineer for the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, would simply call his German competitors a bunch of sissies. Instead, he says this: "They often add stability by letting the inside tire spin when calibrating an electronic differential."
"Add stability," in this case, is another way of saying "never powerslide." And that is not the strategy the C7 vehicle performance integration team employs. "We let you oversteer if that's what you're asking to do," says MacDonald.
And it's in this large playground between the limit of grip and the limit of control that the new Stingray defines itself.
It's Not About Powerslides
The Stingray's magic bullet, the component of its character that makes it truly amazing, is a combination of the right hardware and expertly tuned chassis controls. Together they create a textbook rear-drive sports car with potent power and confidence-inspiring electronic safety nets.
You want big powerslides? Turn everything off and the C7 will oblige. But it's so much better than that. When properly configured, you'll find yourself doing things in the C7 you'd never consider without such elegant backup systems.
One of those things, we discovered under the graceful control of PTM, is confidently executing a 100-mph four-wheel slide over a midcorner blind crest on a wholly unfamiliar racetrack. Try that in your 911.
Stability, then, has a whole new meaning in the C7.
Ask MacDonald, who calibrates the Stingray's Performance Traction Management system, about the nuances of PTM tuning and the details are telling.
"We know it's right when Jim Mero [the ride/handling performance engineer responsible for the C6 ZR1's 7-minute, 19-second Nürburgring lap time] thinks it's just barely slowing him down," says MacDonald. "That's where the calibration needs to be for the best corner exit speed."
Though there's data to support this claim, even this hardened engineer admits that talented drivers prefer more wheel slip. Despite it being slower, he understands that exiting a corner sideways is, for many, the most rewarding component of driving a car that works right.
"That's why you'll never buy a Corvette without an off switch," says MacDonald.
In addition to making more conservative strategies look silly, the team's willingness to acknowledge this truth demonstrates a fundamental understanding of what a real driver's car should be.
And make no mistake, the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray is a real driver's car. It hunts apexes with laser-sight precision, clearly communicates its intentions and provides dynamic response on par with far more costly equipment.
Cars equipped with the Z51 package include the electronic limited-slip differential (eLSD), dry-sump lubrication, lower 1st through 3rd gear ratios, brake, differential and transmission cooling ducts and other aero aids. In addition to the electronic differential, the Driver Mode Selector (a knob on the center console) manages up to 11 other systems, including traction control, stability control, launch control, throttle progression, steering weight and the optional magnetorheological dampers.
Numerous factors contribute to the Stingray's improved steering: A smaller 14.1-inch wheel drives a variable-ratio rack that ramps the steering rate between roughly 17:1 off center and about 12:1 near lock. The steering column itself is 150 percent stiffer than the same part on the C6.
Structurally, the C7 is about 50 percent stiffer than the car it replaces thanks to an all-aluminum chassis and improved welding, fastening and bonding methods. Though its base structure is lighter, complete cars weigh more than the C6 and their wheelbase is 1 inch longer.
The Stingray, equipped with the optional dual-mode exhaust, packs 460 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque (standard is 455 hp/460 lb-ft). Our test car came equipped with the exhaust, the Z51 package and Magnetic Selective Ride Control. It also utilized the seven-speed manual transmission with active rev-matching: a feature toggled on and off using the wheel-mounted paddles that would otherwise execute shifts on automatic-equipped cars.
And in our tests it was insanely rapid... in every measurable way.
How does a 12.0-second quarter-mile at 117.3 mph sound? Sixty mph was gone in 4.1 seconds (3.8 seconds with 1-foot rollout as on a drag strip).
But straight-line tests hardly tell the whole story. Using the Z51-specific Michelin Pilot Super Sport ZP rubber, it circled the skid pad at 1.08g, the highest number we've recorded in a production car on street tires. The slalom, hastily performed in the last few minutes of our test, passed at a mighty 72.8 mph.
With its middle finger raised to physics, the C7 also stopped from 60 mph in only 93 feet, which is the shortest stopping distance we've ever measured.
Though just barely, all of these numbers are better than the last 991-generation PDK-equipped Porsche 911 we tested. And they're so much better than the last base C6 Corvette we tested that those numbers don't even merit mention.
More to the Story
But it's not all magic. The Stingray's brakes are easily the weakest part of its dynamic performance. Z51-equipped cars are fitted with 13.6-inch iron rotors up front and 13.3-inchers at the rear, with four-piston Brembo calipers at all four corners. Running an altered version of the Milford Road Course at GM's proving ground — one that's harder on brakes than the whole track — resulted in diminished pedal response after several hard laps. Same story on the (admittedly high-speed) autocross course.
Braking seems to be the only shortcoming in an otherwise comprehensive performance package, and the team undoubtedly needed to leave headroom for more capable brakes on future high-performance models. In fairness, this isn't the wholly underbraked package we saw on early C6 Z06 Corvettes, but it's far from the utterly indifferent-to-abuse ceramic setup available on outgoing Z06 and ZR1 models.
Though brakes aren't his specialty, MacDonald insists that the car isn't underbraked based on its competition and GM's targets. "We can complete a full tank of fuel on the [unaltered] MRC without brake problems," he says. And, trust us on this one, there's no screwing around when these guys are turned loose on the MRC. It's a full tank at maximum attack.
Livable Track Car
The Stingray's biggest strength is its ability to seamlessly couple commitment to the craft of driving and utter competence in everyday use. Though its performance numbers might indicate as much, an uncompromised Porsche GT3 it is not. Sure, it's got 460 horses shoving around only 3,444 pounds, which will make you plenty dead should you unhitch restraint at the wrong instant, but it doesn't want to.
No. What it wants to do is make you look like a hero, be it at a local track day, ripping a big, sideways burnout leaving work or cruising comfortably down Woodward Avenue. Such competing priorities are no obstacle for proper hardware, tuning and technology.
In other words, you'll be comfortable driving it to work every day. Even Porsche's do-all 911 can't match the ride/handling balance available in the Stingray. The exhaust note remains at bay until wide-open throttle is requested. There's a discernible difference in ride quality between "Tour" and "Sport" modes. And, considering the Stingray's purpose and ability, it is genuinely comfortable when it's asked to be.
We navigated the gray hell of potholes that is urban Detroit with indifference for the Z51's 19- and 20-inch wheels. Both our kidneys and the wheels survived. Anyone with realistic expectations will be happy every day in a Stingray.
And on the road, the wins keep coming. The EPA estimates the Stingray's fuel economy at 29 mpg highway and 17 mpg city.
Seats Don't Suck
If there's one upgrade that will be appreciated above all else in the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, it's the seats. Ignore, for now, the car's solid performance-per-dollar ratio. Ignore its acceleration. Ignore its handling. Because without seats that are both comfortable and supportive, the rest matters little.
We drove four or five Stingrays in Michigan, none of which was equipped with the competition sport seats. That we didn't even notice their absence says something about the base GT seats. They are as good as they need to be, so that dead horse can finally be left alone.
Among the Stingray's many configurable systems is its instrument panel. Specifically, its tachometer display changes according to the priorities of the drive mode (Tour, Sport or Track) selected.
An 8-inch touchscreen accommodates Chevy's MyLink infotainment system, which was only partially functional on the preproduction cars we drove. As is common practice at GM now, the screen drops to reveal a bin for small-item storage and a USB port. There's optional carbon-fiber trim, abundant stitched leather and a distinct sense of purpose around the job of driving.
No, this isn't Porsche materials quality. Nor is it Porsche pricing.
In a move sure to set remaining C6 prices into a tailspin, Chevy priced the Stingray only $1,400 more than the outgoing base Corvette. Z51-equipped cars start at $54,795, including delivery. Our tester — loaded up with the $8,005 Preferred Equipment Group, premium paint, several interior trim packages, the dual-mode exhaust and magnetorheological dampers — rang up a $68,175 hit.
Only an outstanding base Corvette can justify that kind of money. Fortunately, that's exactly what this car is. Chevy is giving the world a performance car with few compromises. It's faster than just about everything on the road, will happily get you to work every day or through a weekend road trip and it costs about 60 percent as much as its German competition.
But more important than the performance, the relative practicality and even more than the solid interior design is the fact that, finally, the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray is good enough to tolerate whatever stigma might accompany its ownership.
Because this is a damned fine car. Anyone who doesn't think so hasn't driven one sideways.
The manufacturer provided Edmunds this vehicle for the purposes of evaluation.
Used 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Coupe Overview
The Used 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Coupe is offered in the following styles: Z51 2dr Coupe (6.2L 8cyl 7M), and 2dr Coupe (6.2L 8cyl 7M).
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Price comparisons for Used 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Coupe trim styles:
- The Used 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Coupe Base is priced between $33,541 and$46,195 with odometer readings between 1486 and64987 miles.
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Should I lease or buy a 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray?
Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.