The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette joins the prestigious mid-engine sports car club. In this group are some of the best-performing and best-looking cars on the market. And they’re often very expensive. The Acura NSX and Audi R8, for example, cost well more than $100,000 each, and their good looks are undeniable. The question is: Can the $60,000 Corvette Stingray hold its own against the competition when it comes to styling?
The Corvette’s front end is certainly an attractive angle. The large, wide grille establishes a bold presence, complemented by angular headlights and sharp creases on the hood. Like the Corvette, the NSX also has a sharp grille and a hood that comes to a point in the middle. Its Jewel-Eye headlights provide a touch of luxury, and scoops on either side of the hood offer added athleticism. The Audi R8 looks a little more rounded, and its grille is a bit tamer.
Now that it’s a mid-engine car, the Corvette shares its sleek cab-forward proportions with the NSX and R8. Looking at the side profile, you’ll notice the Corvette features a new trim piece and vent to complement its curves. Moving rearward, the Corvette has large hips. Both the NSX and R8 also have side vents, with the one on the R8 looking particularly bold. From this angle, the R8’s rear end does not jut out like it does on the Corvette.
You have to love mid-engine sports cars because you get a good view of that engine as it drives away. We can’t help but love when the Corvette is paired with a high-mounted rear wing. It just looks right on a Corvette. Also in the rear, the taillights receive an interesting double-C shape and spread to the very edges of the bodywork. Unlike the other cars, the Corvette has dual exhaust tips. The NSX features small taillights connected by a light bar, and other than one major crease, there aren’t a lot of sharp lines. The R8’s low rear end is sleek, with razor-sharp taillights and a tasteful rear wing.
Inside the cabin, the Corvette takes a lot of design risks. Along with crazy seat belt color options, you also get a long row of 20 buttons on the center console, which sharply divides the driver and passenger. Its large touchscreen is canted toward the driver so it is easier to see. The NSX features the most conventional interior, with lots of classic Acura touches. The R8 is the most unusual of them all since it does not have a central infotainment screen; the digital driver display takes over that job. Audi tries to fill the dead space on the dashboard with air vents and climate control knobs.