I must acknowledge that I am an idiosyncratic person. I am also sure that status is far more by nature than by nurture.
I have little respect for people who are not true to themselves. From Shakespeare’s Hamlet: “This above all: to thine own self be true.” I have little respect for people who try to be something they’re not. Of course, I think people should strive to improve while acknowledging that perfection is impossible. However, a person’s basic nature should be heeded.
These are two pictures I took in the Exhibit Hall at the National Corvette Museum of the One Millionth Corvette produced. (How’s that for a run-on sentence?!) This was one of eight cars that fell into the sinkhole that opened up under the floor of the Skydome part of the museum on February 12, 2014.
Five of the cars were not restored and are on display in the Skydome above where the sinkhole opened up. Two of the three restored cars are also part of that exhibit. I think the 1,000,000th Corvette is usually on display there as well, but for the 25th Anniversary bash it was moved to the Exhibit Hall. I have to admit that I choked up a bit upon seeing the damaged cars.
Despite the claim of the Guinness Book of World Records the Corvette is the best-selling two-seat sports car in history with about 1.7 million sold. Despite the claim of Mercedes-Benz the Corvette is the longest-running car model in history having been produced in every calendar year since 1953.
I will editorialize now: dollar for dollar, the modern Corvette is easily the best performance car in the world. Let’s look at a Ferrari 488, a step above the “entry-level” Portofino, and compare it to a C7 Z06, a step above a base Stingray. The 488 is supposed to be able to accelerate from 0-60 MPH in 2.85-2.9 seconds, a hair faster than the Z06 time of 2.95 seconds. In the quarter-mile “test” the 488 is supposed to run low 11s, say 11.2 seconds. A Z06 can break 11 seconds. In a skidpad test the 488 can pull 1.02-1.05g, a great performance. The Z06 can pull 1.2g, an otherworldly number.
A Ferrari 488 will cost about $275,000; a new C7 Z06 will cost about $100,000 equipped with the Z07 performance package. Both cars are comfortable, but which one do you think will cost less to service and to maintain? That’s a rhetorical question because the answer is obvious.
A lot of car snobs refuse to accept that the Corvette is a world-class performance car. That refusal is one of the reasons, I believe, that Chevrolet/GM made the decision to move to a mid-engine platform with the C8. Remember this Abraham Lincoln story by way of Thomas Sowell:
“Abraham Lincoln once asked an audience how many legs a dog has if you count the tail as a leg. When they answered ‘five,’ Lincoln told them that the answer was four. The fact that you called the tail a leg did not make it a leg.”
As Aldous Huxley once wrote, “Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.” Unless one wants to spend many multiples of the price of a Corvette, one cannot buy a car with better performance.
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