The C5 Corvette: An Overview
Corvette manufactured the C5 from 1997 through 2004. At the time the C5 Corvette was introduced, the 1997 C5 featured an all-new drive train. The transmission moved to the rear of the car. As part of a trans-axle assembly, the transmission was connected to the engine by a torque tube. This arrangement improved the front-to-rear weight ratio of the Corvette, which translates to better handling.
Platform: y-body; engine: 5.7L LS1 V-8; transmission: 4-speed automatic (from previous years), or the new Borg-Warner 6-speed manual; length: 179.7 in. (4564 mm); width: 73.6 in. (1,869 mm); height: 47.7 in. (1,212 mm), convertible: 47.8 in. (1214 mm); wheelbase: 104.5 in. (2654 mm). The car was manufactured by General Motors, Chevrolet Division, in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Body styles were: 2-door hatchback coupe, 2-door targa top, 2-door convertible (1998-2004) and 2-door hardtop coupe (1999-2004).
The engine for the C5, when first introduced in 1996, was also brand new. Called the LS1, and now widely revered, the motor initially produced 345 horsepower (257 kW) but improved to 350 horsepower (261 kW) at 365 lb ft (495 N m) of torque.
The C5 sported a more graceful tone than the C4. When the C5 Corvette was introduced, only the hatchback and convertible were available (the convertible version featured a trunk for the first time since the 1960’s). In 1999, a hard top body style came out. It was truly a hard top because it had no removable targa top panel like the hatchback. The shape of the 1999 and upward C5s was like the convertible; it also featured a trunk.
An innovation on the 1997 C5 was the “Heads Up Display” or HUD, which allows the driver to view performance data without having to look down at an instrument panel. Another innovation was the Active Handling System. This consists of sensors that measure yaw rate, acceleration, and the position of the steering wheel. These work together with the Corvette’s traction control and anti-lock braking systems for better handling.
The C5 Corvette had more rear brake stability when an upgraded version of the Active Handling system came out in 2001. The improvement released brake pressure on the rear wheel, which allowed the vehicle to better remain “on course” around corners and during light braking maneuvers.
Accessories for the C5 Corvette include interior add-ons like gauges (for fuel and oil pressure, volts, etc.), seat covers and mats, organizers, seat heaters, and many others. Exterior accessories include front end bras, aluminum grilles, spoilers, and car covers. Also check out wheels, engine accessories and under-the-hood gear.
Financing for your C5 Corvette comes in four “flavors”: you can borrow money from a credit union or bank; you can borrow money at the dealership (many have their own financing departments); if you own a home, you can use the equity in it to finance your C5 Corvette; or you can lease the C5.
You will find that when you insure your C5 Corvette there are companies that specialize in insuring this car. Check them out. Plus you may find that insuring a Corvette is actually less expensive than insuring other makes and models. Why? Because as a rule Corvettes are not driven on an everyday basis nor are they driven as far.
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