Drive Type: 2WD
Portland, Oregon, United States
If the 2013 Indy 500 were a movie it would be the one expected to win all the little statues come awards season, and if it were an athlete it would have made spectators watch in awe as it broke record after record. And this kind of talk comes after last year's race was considered one of the best ever - the last lap hijinks in 2012 and Takuma Sato's crash leading to a podium ceremony straight out of a Golden Globes tearjerker.
But this year's race delivered more than anyone expected, from the 250,000 fans to the commentators to the IndyCar series itself and, finally, to the guy who hopped through a two-mile window on Lap 197 to take the lead and keep it until the end.
If you can't wait for the next-generation Chevrolet Corvette ZR1, Hennessey says they will have you covered. The Texas-based company has announced it will offer a spate of upgrades for the 2014 Corvette ranging from a range of bolt-on options all the way up to a 1,000-horsepower, twin-turbo system. Buyers can start with a cold air intake, cat-back exhaust or stainless steel long-tube headers, but Hennessey says it will also offer up three stages of forced induction mayhem should those bits and baubles not provide enough thrust.
Those choices start with a supercharger system good for up to 700 hp, though Hennessey will gladly ditch the blower in favor of two turbos. Doing so will spin the crank to the tune of 800 horsepower all the way up to a certifiably ludicrous 1,000 ponies. There's no word on how much these tricks will cost you - or when they will be available, as we're guessing they haven't gotten their hands on the car yet - but you can head over to the Hennessey site to drop them a line if you're curious.
Edmunds has worked up a piece that tries to figure out just how much the global Chevrolet Corvette economy is worth, a spitballed guesstimate putting the number at more than $2.5 billion with the proviso that the number is probably low. It starts by taking Corvette's new car sales of 14,132 units last year, which would equate to $714,725,900 (including destination) assuming ever car sold was a base coupe with no options. In the final tally, a little extra padding gets that number up to $750,000,000.
But that's not all. Consider this: Many of the almost 1.4 million Corvettes produced over the model's history are still on the road. There are new parts being produced and aftermarket companies like Mid-America Motorworks deaing business, that single Illinois company doing more than $40 million a year in sales. There are the Corvette events large and small, restorers who do nothing but Corvettes, salvage yards that deal only in used Corvette parts and the Corvette magazines where owners find all this stuff.
And then there are the Corvette-themed tchotchkes, every single one of which provides a tiny contribution to the huge licensing royalties that General Motors collects every year. The article admits there's no way to come to an accurate number, but it just goes to show how valuable one specific model can be to a company.