2017 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible Review

by Edmunds
Edmunds Editor
Baseball has roots in England. Apple pie has Dutch origins. If you're looking for something quintessentially American, try the iconic Chevrolet Corvette. For more than 60 years, the Corvette has been the definitive American sports car, and the current C7 generation is easily the best Vette yet. The 2017 Chevrolet Corvette lineup gains a new Grand Sport model that combines the handling upgrades of the top-of-the-line Z06 with the manageable power of the base V8 engine. This results in one of the easiest cars on the market to drive fast (on a racetrack, of course). Fortunately, this track-ready performance doesn't come paired with a harsh ride. Across its model lineup, the Corvette continues to be the rare alpha performance car that's also adept at schlepping you and a passenger around in comfort. With prices ranging from the mid-$50,000s to almost double that, there's a Corvette to fit most budgets and appetites for performance. This wide range also opens up the competition to every corner of the world. Historically, the Porsche 911 has been the most direct rival, but other strong rivals such as the BMW M4, Dodge Viper, Ford GT350, Jaguar F-Type, Nissan GT-R and Porsche Cayman and Boxster are all lined up to grab your attention. There's not a bad one in this bunch, but none of them has the cherished spot in American history that the 2017 Chevrolet Corvette enjoys.Standard safety features for all 2017 Corvette models include antilock brakes, traction and stability control, side airbags, a rearview camera and OnStar emergency telematics. Other available safety features are discussed in Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options. In Edmunds brake testing, a Z51 coupe came to a stop from 60 mph in an exceptionally short 94 feet. The Z06 with the Z07 package holds the all-time Edmunds record for shortest stopping distance at 90 feet.

what's new

A new Grand Sport model slots in between the regular Stingray and the supercar-grade Z06, pairing the former's powertrain with the latter's looks and handling. Otherwise, the 2017 Corvette essentially carries over unchanged from last year.


There's something wonderful about an American sports car with a big V8 under the hood, and the 2017 Chevrolet Corvette is a case in point. Even the base engine has an abundance of power, accompanied by a brash growl when unleashed. The standard seven-speed manual transmission features perfect, rev-matched downshifts that can be enabled or disabled via the column-mounted paddles. Driver beware, though — with that extra seventh gear, the gates are rather close together, which could cause some unintended second-to-first shifts.

At the top of the Vette food chain is the Z06, which can hold its own against some supercars costing significantly more. It's exhilarating, for sure, but it will keep even the most gifted of drivers on high alert when driven hard. The new Grand Sport stakes out a Goldilocks zone by combining the breathtaking handling of the Z06 with the Stingray's more manageable power. Unless you're a professional racer, the Grand Sport will likely be a better fit for track-day use.

Whichever Corvette you choose, you won't regret your decision in everyday driving or on a long road trip because comfort remains one of the model's hallmarks. In this regard, the 2017 Chevrolet Corvette is one of the more versatile sports cars you can get.


If there's any doubt whether or not the 2017 Corvette is a driver's car, look no further than the interior. All major controls and readouts surround the driver like in a fighter jet cockpit for a snug, almost custom-fitted feel. Materials used are far better than in previous Corvette generations, though still not as nice what you'll find in many comparably priced cars.

Overall comfort is commendable. Despite the Corvette's performance potential, it won't beat you up on a long drive or over imperfect pavement. The seats are well-shaped and adequately cushioned for long-distance touring. Opting for the adjustable side bolsters allows drivers to select the kind of lateral support needed for high-G cornering antics, while the available sport seats firmly anchor you in place. The Magnetic Ride Control system further enhances comfort, giving you the power to select softer ride-quality settings, and the cabin remains quiet enough at speed to have a conversation without raising your voice.

Thanks to the recent addition of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, it's much easier to control infotainment functions. The underlying MyLink system is capable of controlling the same functions, but it is sometimes slow to respond and less than intuitive. One of the coolest features has to be the available performance data recorder, which uses a front-facing camera and numerous sensors to record your driving heroics on track, with a wealth of acceleration, braking and handling information available for review.

Cargo capacity, at 15 cubic feet, is admirable for the coupe. The space under the hatch itself is a bit shallow but expansive. Clever latches inside the hatch secure the removable roof panel when you need a little sun, but there won't be much room left over for anything else. The convertible's trunk can hold up to 10 cubic feet whether the top is down or up.

edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.