The Corvette C7-Based Electric Genovation GXE Is as Quick as a C8 Z51
The Genovation GXE has been under development for over five years now, and while it remains an ultra-quick novelty item starting at $750,000 and limited to only 75 samples, it’s also a preview of what General Motors can do when it’s time to launch an all-electric Corvette.
Of course, GM will have to start its high-end electrification by launching a high-performance hybrid first, possibly badged as the ZR1, but while we all wait for that, Genovation took the opportunity to break the standing EV speed record by driving the C7-based GXE to a healthy 211.9 mph at the Space Shuttle Runway of the Johnny Bohmer Proving Grounds in Florida. That’s fast, alright, but an electric Corvette also needs to perform through corners.
That’s where two-time 24 Hours of Daytona class winner and now Tesla-taming Pikes Peak challenger Randy Pobst comes in. With the GXE’s dual-speed compression shocks and active tilting rear wing, the racing expert spent a day helping to fine-tune the suspension, steering, and aero, so the team could achieve the best time possible around Thunderhill West.
The Genovation GXE may be an electric sports car aiming for 220 mph in a straight line, but with the bigger wing on, it also has to perform on track while sporting the most luxurious Corvette interior since Pratt & Miller’s 8.2-liter C6RS in 2006. Having found the correct settings, Pobst drove the GXE around Thunderhill Raceway in 1:21.16.
On paper, that makes the combination of a tuned C7 chassis, a 60 kWh battery pack, and two electric motors about as quick as a C8 with the Z51 package. For R&T‘s 2020 Performance Car of the Year, Editor-in-Chief Travis Okulski drove the C8 to 1:22.72, which wasn’t a perfect lap since it was his first day ever at Thunderhill West. The GXE is still improving week after week, but it’s more than likely that the upcoming flat-plane crank C8 Z06 will beat it in track performance.
Does that matter? Absolutely not. Some first adopters and other tech-focused collectors will be happy to pay whatever Genovation is charging for all the work put into the GXE idea, and when it comes to pioneering EVs, anything lapping a track as quickly as Chevy’s first mid-engine Corvette is plenty quick in my book. Proving my point is Mr. Pobst on his hot lap with the 800-horsepower Genovation GXE:
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