Next-gen Corvette nose accidentally unwrapped by supplier

Dale Jewett is interactive editor for Autoweek, an affiliate of Automotive News

Canadian tooling supplier Omega Tool Corp. thought it was just showing off its capabilities in a promotional video. Unfortunately for Omega and the Chevrolet Corvette team, the video also reveals the front bumper cover for the redesigned 2014 Corvette, known as the C7.

The new Corvette is set to debut at the Detroit auto show in January and go on sale next year. And the Corvette team is doing its best to keep the car under wraps until then, but interest in the new Vette is sky high.

Omega yanked down the video once its mistake gained Internet fame, but it has been reposted by fans -- at least until those are pulled down. Those videos are now private on YouTube, as well.

Meanwhile, the Corvette assembly plant in Bowling Green, Ky., is busy building the 2013 car, the last of the C6 generation. In June the plant built 1,656 Corvettes. That's the most production for one month since May 2010, when the plant built 1,676 Corvettes. Production of the 2013 Corvette started on May 1, and that model has already accounted for nearly half of the 7,853 Corvettes built this year.

Of course, Chevrolet and Corvette team members remain tight-lipped about the C7 Corvette. But we've been paying close attention and have some clues about the 2014 Vette, based on hints dropped here and there:

  • It will use an upgraded variation of the current platform. But expect greater use of lightweight materials such as aluminum and carbon fiber in a bid to lower the Vette's curb weight and improve fuel economy.
  • The 2013 Corvette is the last year for the ZR1 and its supercharged V8. The 2014 Corvette is widely expected to lose its current 6.2-liter V8 base engine, which makes 430 hp, replaced by a new-generation General Motors small-block engine with smaller displacement, direct fuel injection, about the same amount of horsepower and better fuel economy. And possibly a turbocharger.
  • There is an emphasis to upgrade the design and materials used in the interior. Today's Corvette took a step forward with redesigned sport seats for the 2012 Centennial Edition and the 2013 60th-anniversary and 427 convertible Collector Edition cars.

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