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Auto blogFri, 05 Apr 2013 18:32:00 EST
The days of changing your engine oil every 3,000 miles are long gone thanks to most cars having automatic oil monitoring systems, but about 800,000 General Motors vehicles apparently have incorrect monitoring software that is leading to premature engine component wear. According to Autoweek, certain 2010-2012 Buick LaCrosse, Regal, Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain models equipped with 2.4-liter four-cylinder engines could be going too long in between oil changes resulting in a higher-than-normal number of warranty claims for the engine's balance chain. The balance chain links the balance shaft to the crankshaft, and a worn one can produce higher noise levels.
As a fix, GM dealers will be reprogramming the software for the monitors in an effort to reduce the interval between oil changes, which varies based on driving habits and conditions. Through February 2015, the software update will be done at no cost to vehicle owners, but since this is not a recall, after that point, it will be up to the discretion of dealers as to whether or not they will charge for the service. What isn't immediately clear is whether GM plans on giving assistance to out-of-warranty customers who are experiencing engine issues from the worn chain.
After months of speculation, Chevrolet has finally revealed the official starting price of the 2014 Corvette Stingray. The base MSRP for the 450-horsepower Stingray Coupe will be $51,995, while the Stingray Convertible will go for $56,995 (*both prices include a $995 destination fee). This means that the price increase from 2013 to 2014 is just $1,400 for the coupe and $2,395 for the convertible - pretty modest increases considering the upgrade in specifications. Of course, neither price accounts for the sort of dealer markup that might grace early C7 window stickers, especially since less than a third of all Chevrolet dealers will be allocated Corvette models to sell at the car's launch.
Now, these prices are for the base car, so if you're wondering how much a fully loaded Stingray will run, Chevy has given us a good indication of that as well. The coupe we saw on display at the Detroit Auto Show (shown above), for example, would run $73,360 including options such as the $2,800 Z51 Performance Package, $2,495 competition sport seats and the $1,795 Magnetic Ride Control option - just to name a few. Stepping up to the 3LT trim level that brings a full leather interior will run an extra $8,005 over the base price.
While $20,000 in options may seem like a lot, this "as-tested" price still has the C7 competitively priced against rival coupes like the Porsche 911 and Nissan GT-R. Speaking of price comparisons, Chevrolet also points out that the C7 Stingray Z51 costs $2,200 less than the C6 Grand Sport while delivering better acceleration (0-60 mph in less than four seconds) and improved track performance (including more than 1 g in cornering).
Where else would you expect the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray to show up first? Although this time it isn't exactly in Jay Leno's Garage, Leno instead playing an away game at Brown's Classic Auto in Scottsdale, Arizona. Nor does Leno drive the car, instead taking an 11-minute walkaround of the new American sports car with General Motors design head Ed Welburn, the same man who recently brought by a string of classic Corvettes to the talk show host's California compound.
It is, admittedly, a love-fest for the American sports car now featuring 450 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque, but one that also features admissions about previous Corvette seats like "they were kinda rough," and the explanation that labeling the coupe "Stingray" means not having to call it "the base Corvette." On top of that, Welburn also explains the proper application of the term "dashboard." You can watch it all in the video below.