There’s a lot of Corvette firsts with the eight-generation Chevrolet icon. That list of firsts got a little bigger with the reveal of the 2020 Corvette Convertible, which features a retractable power hardtop for the first time ever.
Like every generation of Corvette, the C8 was engineered from the beginning to be a convertible. This means the engineering lift to thrown in this retractable hardtop was fairly minor, but it is quite an impressive piece of engineering. Unlike most clunky hardtops, this one is a simple two-piece design that can fold down in just 16 seconds and at speeds up to 30 mph. The top folds up underneath the tonneau cover; both of which are made of composite materials.
Engineers also added a pair of flying buttresses to the side of the tonneau cover to cover the rollover bars. Resting between the bars is a retractable rear window, similar to other exotics. The setup is designed to enhance aerodynamics and reduce cabin noise when the top is down.
The topless configuration has yielded very few changes to the rest of the car. Chevy says minor tweaks had to be made to the suspension and other components, but otherwise this car is just like the coupe. The similarities include the Corvette’s LT2 6.2-liter V-8 with 490 horsepower and 495 pound-feet of torque.
Where similarities with the coupe begin to diminish is in price. The Corvette Convertible will start at $67,495 including destination charges. That price point makes the drop-top version about $7,500 higher than the coupe.