2020 Corvette

Corvette eAWD system will likely use an electric motor system to drive the front wheels, with a battery pack in the frunk.

There have been rumors that the C8 Chevrolet Corvette would offer a gas-electric hybrid drivetrain since before the new mid-engine machine was introduced. Heck, even the current C8 Owner’s Manual shows a fuse for a Lithium-Ion battery module. Today, the folks at GM-Trucks.com shared information from leaked General Motors documents that the new Corvette will feature an electric all-wheel-drive system called “eAWD”. Based on their information, this option could arrive as early as 2023. When it arrives, the C8 will likely become an even more impressive performance machine.

The Leaked Document

Some of you might be questioning leaked Corvette information from a site that focuses on General Motors trucks. While this information doesn’t fit with most of their coverage, the folks who run GM-Trucks.com are experts on all things GM. They previously leaked the C8 Corvette start-up screen. This makes it clear that they know what they are talking about. They are a reliable source of information beyond just pickup trucks.

2020 Corvette

It was pretty cool when GM-Trucks.com was the first to show us the C8 Corvette startup animation, but this time, they are sharing information that could change the entire face of the American performance car world. We don’t know where they got the documents. If they are accurate, the Corvette will have a unique hybrid all-wheel-drive system within four years, if not sooner.

This leaked information fits with our report back on August 27 that Corvette engineers had been shifted over to the company’s electric vehicle programs. Perhaps the Corvette engineers are working with the in-house electrification experts to develop the C8 eAWD system.

Corvette eAWD

According to this report, the 2023 Corvette is slated to come with eAWD, which will be introduced under the RPO code XFD. After the first year, the RPO code will change to XRD, but those codes really don’t matter to enthusiasts. What does matter is that the eAWD system is currently slated to arrive for the 2023 model year. At the same time, this report points out that it could be pushed back to 2024. When it arrives, the Stingray will become an even greater performance car when it comes to executing a hard launch. This system will likely also improve performance measures in road handling.

2020 Corvette

The GM-Trucks report doesn’t have any mechanical details. They speculate that the Corvette eAWD system will have one or two electric motors mounted at the front wheels. The battery pack will likely be located in the base of the frunk. Based on other performance cars that rely on an electric-based all-wheel-drive system, it seems most likely that the C8 will have an electric motor driving each of the front wheels. However, the company could reduce weight by going with a single motor setup. Provided that we are accurate with the setup of the system, there would be no electric power at the rear wheels and no gasoline power at the front wheels. When the gasoline and electric propulsion systems are working in unison, this is almost guaranteed to be the quickest Corvette ever.

The combination of gas and electric power technically makes this a hybrid package for the Corvette. We still don’t expect it to be marketed as a “green” option. Even if the eAWD system improves overall fuel economy and allows all-electric driving, Chevrolet will likely market this as a performance feature, yielding better traction on a hard launch or when accelerating out of a corner.

2020 Corvette

The only bad news here is that eAWD is expected to arrive for 2023 or 2024. This means that it is likely to be a few years before we get any official word from General Motors. Hopefully, this leaked information will lead the company to offer-up a concept that previews the technology. If nothing else, we know that the rumors of an all-wheel-drive “hybrid” C8 Corvette are valid.

Photos: General Motors

Join the Corvette Forums now!

Patrick Rall

“Before I was old enough to walk, my dad was taking me to various types of racing events, from local drag racing to the Daytona 500,” says Patrick Rall, a lifetime automotive expert, diehard Dodge fan, and respected auto journalist for over 10 years. “He owned a repair shop and had a variety of performance cars when I was young, but by the time I was 16, he was ready to build me my first drag car – a 1983 Dodge Mirada that ran low 12s. I spent 10 years traveling around the country, racing with my dad by my side. While we live in different areas of the country, my dad still drag races at 80 years old in the car that he built when I was 16 while I race other vehicles, including my 2017 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat and my 1972 Dodge Demon 340.

“Although I went to college for accounting, my time in my dad’s shop growing up allowed me the knowledge to spend time working as a mechanic before getting my accounting degree, at which point I worked in the office of a dealership group. While I was working in the accounting world, I continued racing and taking pictures of cars at the track. Over time, I began showing off those pictures online and that led to my writing.

“Ten years ago, I left the accounting world to become a full-time automotive writer and I am living proof that if you love what you do, you will never “work” a day in your life,” adds Rall, who has clocked in time as an auto mechanic, longtime drag racer and now automotive journalist who contributes to nearly a dozen popular auto websites dedicated to fellow enthusiasts.

“I love covering the automotive industry and everything involved with the job. I was fortunate to turn my love of the automotive world into a hobby that led to an exciting career, with my past of working as a mechanic and as an accountant in the automotive world provides me with a unique perspective of the industry.

“My experience drag racing for more than 20 years coupled with a newfound interest in road racing over the past decade allows me to push performance cars to their limit, while my role as a horse stable manager gives me vast experience towing and hauling with all of the newest trucks on the market today.

“Being based on Detroit,” says Rall, “I never miss the North American International Auto Show, the Woodward Dream Cruise and Roadkill Nights, along with spending plenty of time raising hell on Detroit’s Woodward Avenue with the best muscle car crowd in the world.

Rall can be contacted at [email protected]