GM has patented some new additions for the upcoming Corvette in the form of active aerodynamics technology.
It looks like GM is truly going to be playing with the big boys. Their C8 mid-engine Corvette has been making the rounds for the past several months and giving us plenty of eye candy on what GM hopes will compete with an avalanche of European mid-engine supercars. So far, it certainly looks the part, but it’s still a little too early to tell how well the C8 will handle against something like a Lamborghini or McLaren.
But just putting the engine in the middle isn’t quite enough to truly consider yourself a European-style supercar. You also need to have some fancy active aerodynamics to make sure air is exactly where it needs to be in order to generate the maximum amount of downforce or the minimum amount of drag.
GM has certainly taken that to heart as they’ve been hard at work making brand new patents for their upcoming Corvette that twist and turn air in new and interesting ways.
As uncovered by CorvetteBlogger, there are three new technologies GM has patented. First are Active Side Skirts that can extend or retract depending on the speed of the car. Sensors around the body determine the rotational speed of the wheels and the velocity of the car to extend the skirt and thereby reduce drag around the tires at high speeds.
Next, we have a clever Active Rear Spoiler that not only raises or lowers but can also tilt up or down depending on what the car needs at the time. For maximum downforce or even additional stopping power, the wing can extend fully up and tilt downward, while for minimum drag it can retract fully into the body.
We’ve seen this sort of thing on Bugattis and Lamborghinis, but never on a Corvette.
Lastly, GM is has patented a new set of Downforce Generating Ducts which take air from the front of the car and direct it to key locations to either generate more downforce or to reduce drag. It can even come with some sort of venturi effect device that causes air to flow even faster around the body.
This technology doesn’t have to be used on the upcoming C8 Corvette either--this is stuff that can be used on any future supercar from GM.
As for when we’ll see the C8 officially debut, don’t expect much until we’re well into 2019.