corvette c8 stingray
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

Behind the Wheel of the C8 Corvette Stingray Convertible

From canyon carver to grocery getter with the touch of a button — the latest Corvette Convertible will turn heads.

I got the chance to spend a week with the C8 Corvette Stingray Convertible Z51 2LT in Portland, Ore. Yes, there was rain. But even with the top down, if you drive fast enough, you don’t get wet — at least not as wet as you’d think you would.

This mid-engine Sebring Orange C8 convertible completely recalibrated my brain on what a Corvette could be. I’ve driven every C7 Chevrolet built and was thoroughly impressed, especially on the track. The C8 flips the script and creates an all-new driving experience.

corvette c8 stingray
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

The mid-engine layout puts the snarling 6.2L V8 right behind the passengers and makes the car rotate into a corner in a very different way than any front-engine Corvette ever could. It feels super balanced, a feeling that is only improved by the silky-smooth eight-speed dual-clutch transmission.

I managed a 4.1-second 0-60 time on wet tarmac and on winter tires. Not only is that quite quick for the conditions, but it also felt completely stable and in control the entire time. In perfect conditions on summer tires, the C8 can do a sub-3-second 0-60 pull.

Have a look at this fun little video for some of the action and my thoughts, and read below for a breakdown of what I liked and what I didn’t about this latest generation Corvette.

C8 Corvette Stingray Convertible Review

Not only is this car fun to drive and a head-turner, but it is also quite practical. It is rated at 15/19/27 mpg and even has quite a large trunk and frunk. Could this be an everyday grocery-getter? Absolutely!

corvette c8 stingray
Frunk; (photo/Bryon Dorr)
corvette c8 stingray
Trunk; (photo/Bryon Dorr)

C8 Convertible: What I Liked

corvette c8 stingray
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)
  • Grand tourer to track weapon with the push of the Z button on the steering wheel
  • Great position, size, and feel of metal shift paddles
  • Plenty of room for long legs and big feet
corvette c8 stingray phone charger
Phone charger; (photo/Bryon Dorr)
  • Rear center console vertical phone charger is pretty slick
  • Really clear, vivid, and high-res cameras for single rear and three front cameras
corvette c8 stingray bucket seats
GT2 bucket seats; (photo/Bryon Dorr)
  • GT2 bucket seats are both heated and cooled
  • Heated Alcantara steering wheel feels great
  • Floating elements and overall dashboard design are unique and interesting
  • Quality 14-speaker Bose sound system

C8 Convertible: What I Didn’t Like

  • No manual transmission option
  • Turn signals are very loud
  • Steering wheel volume buttons pull instead of push
corvette c8 stingray
Center console buttons; (photo/Bryon Dorr)
  • Lots of buttons down the center console
  • The glare off the rear deck lid is super annoying
  • There is a huge blindspot (with no camera)
corvette c8 stingray
Trunk condensation; (photo/Bryon Dorr)
  • Trunk gets tons of condensation when it is humid out
  • At idle, the car feels a bit rough
  • Exhaust in track mode is still too quiet
  • Nose raise doesn’t always raise all the way
corvette c8 stingray center console storage
Center console storage with power outlets; (photo/Bryon Dorr)
  • Console storage needs to be bigger for modern phones
corvette c8 stingray HVAC vent control
HVAC vent control; (photo/Bryon Dorr)
  • The air vent controls feel super cheap
  • GT2 bucket seats’ upper bolsters squeeze at shoulders
corvette c8 stingray
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)
  • The back end is super busy stylistically and is a nightmare to clean

Not Inexpensive, but Plenty of Value

corvette c8 stingray engine
The engine is under this plastic cover. You can’t see any of it; (photo/Bryon Dorr)

My 2020 review car had a window sticker of $88,805 — little has changed with the 2022 car, besides some price increases across the board. While that’s not inexpensive, name another mid-engine sports car with this level of performance and features. The only other car that is close is the Lotus Evora GT, which isn’t available in a convertible.

The car I drove had the 2LT interior package, which you probably will want, but isn’t inexpensive, at $7,300. It also had the Z51 performance package, which you want for sure, and costs $6,345.

The Z51 package gets you things like upgraded brakes, suspension, exhaust, limited-slip rear diff, rear spoiler, and more. Adding to the big total on my test car were the magnetic ride control and GT2 bucket seats, both of which are worthy options to spec your own car.

corvette c8 stingray Z51 brakes
Z51 brakes; (photo/Bryon Dorr)

To build out your own C8 and/or find a dealer near you, go to Chevrolet.com.

corvette c8 stingray
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)
Bryon Dorr
By

Bryon Dorr caught the outdoor adventure addiction through whitewater kayaking, and worldwide adventures to remote places ensued. He crafted his own professional path as a photographer, journalist, and marketing consultant in the automotive and outdoor industries, while full-time overland traveling for nearly 8 years. You’ll usually find him out exploring by 4x4, adventure motorcycle, or sports car while seeking out opportunities to ski, mountain bike, and kayak. Bryon now has a home base in Portland, OR with his wife and young daughter.