Convertible Corvette blows away toupees with 450 horsepower

Classic silhouette

Power-folding soft top

Dropping the top at 30 mph

The top goes up, too.

450 horsepower V8

Converting to convertible

Chasing waterfalls

Interior

Track-ready performance

Available later this year

GENEVA--The seventh-generation 'Vette drops its top at the 2013 Geneva Auto Show with the unveiling of the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray convertible.
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With the roof hidden away, the 'Vette's takes on a silhouette that, to my eye, bears a striking resemblance to the fifth- and sixth-generations models that preceded it.
Caption by / Photo by Antuan Goodwin/CNET
The motorized, fabric top hides away at the touch of a button. The time to go from top up to open air hasn't been published, but it should be as fast (if not faster) than the current model's 18 seconds.
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Drivers can raise or lower the top from outside of the vehicle with the touch of a button on a key fob or drop the top when the vehicle is in motion. The roof is able to activate at speeds up to 30 mph.
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The convertible top is a triple-layered fabric roof that is insulated to reduce wind noise and keep extreme conditions out when needed. A glass rear window allows a view of the road behind.
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The rear-drive Corvette Stingray beneath the roof is largely unchanged. It's powered by the same 450-horsepower, 450 pound-feet of torque V-8 engine and the same 7-speed, rev-matching manual transmission.
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Chevrolet tells us that the Corvette's chassis didn't need any reinforcement with the removal of the carbon fiber roof because the stiff, aluminum monocoque was designed with the convertible in mind. As a result, the 'vertible 'Vette retains nearly the same power-to-weight ratio as the hard top's.
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The body-colored, double-bubble tonneau cover that hides and protects the roof when not in use flows into a "waterfall" panel that also matches the body's hue and fills the space between the seats. The movable roof also required that the seatbelt stays be relocated.
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The Corvette's cabin features the same five-mode drive selector as the hardtop, not to mention the same LCD-based instrument cluster and infotainment system.
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The "standard" Stingray convertible is already shaping up to be quite a capable sports car. Those who are interested in taking their car to the track can opt for the optional Z51 Performance Package, which adds an electronic limited-slip differential, high-speed aerodynamics, a dry-sump oiling system, an integral brake system, and upgraded cooling for the differential and transmission.
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The Corvette Stingray coupe and convertible will both arrive in the global market in late 2013.
Caption by / Photo by Antuan Goodwin/CNET
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