If you think that the mid-engine Corvette is a new idea, think again. It’s been 60 years in the making.
Known internally as the ‘R Car’, the CERV-I was an open wheel single seater racer powered by a small block 283 cid V8 featuring a custom-made light aluminium block that was 90 pounds lighter than a regular cast-iron core of the same size. The total output was 353 horsepower at 6,200 rpm, 38 hp more than the similar sized production V8. The CERV-I was revelatory for Chevrolet, a company that had never built a vehicle with such capacities and competent handling. Duntov himself ran it up Pikes Peak 60 times in 1960 with good results, but in 1957 Chevrolet had withdrawn from all types of racing and thus the CERV-I was never in any type of official competition. Actually, its existence was kept secret for almost two years, until an exhibition appearance during the US Grand Prix in Riverside, California in November 1960.