General Motors was able to build only 2,695 midengine Chevrolet Corvettes before production was halted in March due to the coronavirus outbreak, the manager of the Bowling Green Assembly plant said in a YouTube video posted by a prominent Corvette salesman.
Output of the 2020 Corvette was initially delayed because of the UAW strike against GM last fall and had been underway for only about a month when the automaker shut down all of its North American plants, forcing thousands of customers to wait even longer for the cars they had ordered.
Among those waiting was an Oregon man who ordered a Torch Red convertible from Rick "Corvette" Conti at Coughlin Chevrolet in Ohio. Conti, who is one of the top Corvette salespeople in the U.S. and runs a popular YouTube channel about the car, said the wife of a customer he identified only as Greg emailed to say the man had died April 8 after eight days on a ventilator.
"Rick, this is Doris, Greg's wife, from Oregon," Conti somberly read to his viewers. "Need to let you know that Greg passed away on Wednesday from the coronavirus. He was so looking forward to this midengine Corvette. I guess it's not meant to be. Please cancel his order. Thank you, Doris."
Greg's Corvette was scheduled to be built in the next batch of cars to come out of the Kentucky plant, Conti said. The two men had been talking about the car for about a year and a half. Greg wanted to order a Z06, but when Conti warned that it would likely take a long time, Greg instead chose a 2LT Z51 convertible with GT1 seats and red brake calipers.
"This stuff is real. It's difficult," Conti said in the video, pausing to regain his composure. "What a nice man. A very nice man. Be safe."