THẬP KỶ ĐẦU TIÊN:
“KHÔNG BAO GIỜ CHÙN BƯỚC” – LOUIS CHEVROLET
Một thời trước, chỉ khi mua những chiếc xe đắt tiền, chủ nhân mới chọn được kiểu dáng, đó là những thiết kế độc bản. Nhưng, khi chiếc Chevrolet ra đời, nó đã thay đổi tất cả.
Công ty Chevrolet Motor được thành lập năm 1911. Công ty mới thành lập khởi nghiệp trong một ga-ra Flint, đây là công ty cộng tác giữa một tay đua xe người Bỉ tên Louis Chevrolet và William Durant, một doanh nhân, người sáng lập của General Motor. Chiếc Chevrolet đầu tiên, chiếc Classic Six là một chiếc xe sang trọng với giá bán thời đó vào khoảng 2.500 USD.
Nguyên tắc sống của Louis Chevrolet là “Không Bao Giờ Chùn Bước. Và William Durant đã không chùn bước, bỏ cuộc khi chiếc xe Classic Six thất bại trên thương trường, không gặt hái được lợi nhuận. Ông luôn biết rằng, chiếc xe với kiểu dáng sang trọng với giá vừa phải có thể giúp cạnh tranh với dòng xe thống trị thị trường là mẫu xe Ford Model T. Chevrolet gia nhập gia đình GM vào năm 1917 như là nhà sản xuất xe giá rẻ, trong vòng 10 năm cái tên “Chevy” đã trở thành dòng xe bán chạy nhất tại Mỹ.
Công ty Chevrolet được thành lập
Chiếc xe đầu tiên của Chevrolet lăn bánh trên đường phố Detroit: chiếc Classic Six
Lần đầu tiên hình chiếc nơ Chevy xuất hiện. Lần đầu tiên chiếc xe Chevrolet có trang bị động cơ Valve-in-head được giới thiệu.
1914 | Chevrolet Royal Mail Roadster
Vào cuối năm 1913, chỉ sau 2 năm thành lập, Chevrolet giới thiệu mẫu xe mui trần 1914 “Royal Mail”. Đây là lần đầu tiên Chevy gắn kết hầu như tất cả những tính cách đặc trưng của Chevrolet vào trong 1 chiếc xe. Hiện đại và cá tính, chiếc Royal Mail có thiết kế đặc sắc. Động cơ 171 cid 4 xy lanh đáng tin cậy, van trước, thiết kế sang trọng làm tăng thêm độ mạnh mẽ của chiếc xe. Chiếc xe có giá trung bình 750 USD bao gồm mui, kính chắn gió và đồng hồ tốc độ - những phụ kiện thường có nhiều ở xe cao cấp một vài năm trước. Nhìn lại thì dường như thật trùng khớp khi chiếc Royal Mail là chiếc xe đầu tiên mang biểu tượng hình nơ Chevrolet.
Chevy gia nhập GM Corporation. Chếc xe tải đầu tiên của Chevy được bán ra.
The Race For Leadership
In 1920, Chevrolet sold one car for every three Fords retailed. Seven years later, Chevy was in first place. While the Model T Ford hadn’t changed much from its introduction in 1908 until 1927, Chevrolet’s process of continuous update found favor with American car buyers.
By 1925 Chevrolet was offering a wide range of car and truck models. In 1928, Chevrolet unveiled a larger, more luxurious car, but the big news came in 1929. That year Chevy rocked the industry with an all-new six-cylinder engine, standard across the board. Promoted as “A Six for the Price of a Four,” the 1929 Chevrolet raced out of showrooms and sent competitors back to the drawing board.
1923 | First Million
Chevy builds its 1-millionth car. Establishes first export assembly plant in Denmark.
1929 | Six-Cylinder
Chevy introduces its first 6-cylinder engine.
“The Great American Value”
As the Great Depression tightened its grip and consumers watched every dollar, Chevrolet’s advertising slogan — “The Great American Value” — was exactly the right message for trying times.
In an era also known for great design, Chevy was the leader of its class. GM chief stylist Harley Earl gave the 1932 Deluxe Roadster the style of a baby Cadillac. The ’34 model was another Harley Earl beauty, with streamlined Art Deco styling and “Knee-Action,” the first independent front suspension in the low-price class.
In 1935, the Suburban Carry-All, first of a long line of truck-based wagons, was introduced. Late 1930s Chevys had the upscale styling, economical six-cylinder power, and a reputation for dependability that was so right for the times.
1932 | Chevrolet Sport Roadster
Arriving in the midst of the Great Depression, the 1932 Chevrolets were advertised as “The Great American Value.” The cars’ styling and chrome accents echoed GM’s more expensive 1932 Cadillac models. Priced at a low $445, the Chevrolet Sport Roadster included a “rumble seat” for two, built into the rear deck. Chevrolet’s 6-cylinder overhead-valve engine, introduced in 1929, provided smooth, economical power. Upgrades for 1932 included a synchromesh transmission that helped eliminate embarrassing gear clash. Without a doubt, the styling of the ’32s helped make Chevy America’s favorite car that year. Even today, many collectors point to the 1932 Chevrolet when asked to name their favorite Chevy of all time.
1936 | Chevrolet Suburban
The early Suburban was the grandfather of the modern SUV. However, the steel-bodied, truck-based Chevy Suburban “Carryall” originated as a more robust and accommodating alternative to “woodie” station wagons when it was introduced in mid-1935. Continuing into 1936 with few changes, the first generation Suburban was often put to work carrying up to eight persons, plus their gear and luggage, to rugged and remote locations — where work, play or the pursuit of adventure awaited. During the past 76 years, many of the more than 2 million Chevy Suburbans built have continued that original mission, while others have taken on new roles, such as serving as VIP limousines. Along the way, the Suburban has become the longest-lived, continuous production automotive nameplate in the United States.
The | Forties:
Chevrolet Gears Up For The War Effort
Chevrolet entered the 1940s with a popular line of cars with class-leading value, premium appointments and a wide choice of models. The all-new 1942 series featured a dramatic fastback coupe body that was the season’s style leader. Then war intervened.
World War II had been spreading across Europe, and after Japan attached the United States on December 7, 1941, civilian car production ceased and Chevrolet factories were quickly converted to support the war effort. During World War II, Chevrolet produced massive quantities of military equipment, armaments, trucks and ambulances for the Allied war effort as part of Detroit’s “Arsenal of Democracy.”
Car production resumed for the 1946 model year and war-weary consumers eagerly snapped up the first of the post-car Chevys. All-new “Advance-Design” Chevrolet pickups were announced in 1947 and the first all-new passenger cars were released for the 1949 model year.
1948 | Chevrolet Pickup
Chevy’s new Advance Design trucks for 1948 were the first completely restyled General Motors vehicles introduced after World War II. From the start, people loved the new Chevy pickups. (And they still do — the Advance Design generation trucks are cherished by collectors as classics today.) The new, roomier cabs for ’48 provided spacious three-across seating. The Chevy truck driveline, which had proved itself in every possible way during the war, hadn’t needed — or received — much tweaking. Reliable and versatile, the Chevy half-ton pickup continued as the farmer’s and tradesman’s four-wheeled friend. With the advent of the ‘48s, more families began to consider a Chevy pickup for a second car.
1949 | Chevrolet Canopy Express
During the decades since the first Chevy trucks rolled out in 1918, some once-common uses for Chevrolet trucks, and the special models that served these needs, have fallen by the wayside. Open-sided panel trucks called Canopy Express trucks were once common and used for many types of delivery services. Before supermarkets came along, “hucksters” commonly vended fresh fruits and vegetables curbside in neighborhoods from such trucks. The GM Heritage Center collection has one of the last 1949 Canopy Express trucks in existence.
See the USA in your Chevrolet
Whether it was Cadillac style for a Chevy price or Corvette-like performance in an Impala, in the 1950s, it was one iconic Chevy after another.
At the start of the decade, Chevrolet upended the status quo with the Bel Air, a brightly decorated new top-of-the-line hardtop. Patterned after the previous year’s Cadillac Coupe de Ville, the Bel Air Sport Coupe was the first low-price car with pillarless hardtop styling and an optional automatic transmission (Powerglide).
The Bel Air series was expanded to include sedans and a convertible in 1953, and the option list grew to include such luxuries as power windows, tinted glass and power brakes. America was advised to “See the USA in your Chevrolet,” and millions did just that.
An American legend – the Corvette sports car – was born in 1953. Just 300 were built for that first model year. In 1955, Chevrolet ignited a performance revolution that continues to this day with the introduction of the small block V8. Nestled in the engine bay of the sleek new Bel Air, it was an overnight sensation. The ’55 was followed by an even hotter 1956 model, and a deftly restyled ’57 that remains a classic icon of the fabulous Fifties.
Another legend, the luxurious Impala series, was born in 1958. Another dramatic Impala arrived for 1959. With its long and low look accentuated by eye-catching horizontal rear fins, Chevrolet rightly proclaimed this one to be “All New All Over Again.”
In the space-age Fifties, jet planes soared and rock-and-roll ruled. A ribbon of Interstate highways was rolling out across the land — it was time to see the USA in a Chevrolet.
1953 | Chevrolet Corvette
In 1952, GM styling head Harley Earl and a small team of designers set out to create an American sports car using innovative fiberglass body construction. Crowds thronged the resulting roadster — the Chevrolet Corvette — at the 1953 GM Motorama. A production version, powered by a warmed-up Chevy 6, followed. A few years later, GM engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov, a Russian-born émigré who knew his way around European sports car racing, gave Corvette its high-performance heart. Duntov massaged Ed Cole’s elegantly simple and lightweight 1955 Chevy small-block V8 into a racing engine competitive in most any arena. By 1956, a Corvette race car with the right factory authorized parts could give nearly any car in the world a good run. And that was just the beginning.
1955 | Chevrolet Bel Air Sport Coupe
Occasionally, a new car arrives at just the right moment — and history is made. One such standout in the 100 years of Chevrolet is the 1955 Bel Air. Chevrolet had a “durable but dull” image in the early 1950s that cried out to be reenergized. The 1955 Chevy, especially in top-level Bel Air guise, did just that. Debuting just as rock ‘n’ roll was about to shake America to its cultural roots, the longer, lower and often two-toned 1955 Chevy exuded American optimism. A sizzling new “Turbo-Fire” V8 — the engine that launched Chevys legendary small-block engine family — was optional. Chevy ads called the ’55 “The Hot One,” an allusion both to its V8 performance and record-breaking sales pace.
1956 | Zora’s Wild Ride
To publicize the ’56 Chevy’s new V8, Zora-Arkus Duntov, father of the Corvette, agreed to race an as-yet-unrevealed preproduction model in the annual Pikes Peak Hill Climb. Assaulting the treacherous course in full camouflage without a roll bar, he not only won his class, he set a new record and catapulted Chevy into the postwar performance spotlight.
1957 | Chevrolet Bel Air Nomad
The strikingly sleek Chevy Nomad of 1955–1957 brought mid-century modern design to the utilitarian station wagon. The Nomad got its name, along with its unique roofline and rear body treatment, from a 1954 GM Motorama Corvette concept wagon conjured up by GM design chief Harley Earl — father, as well, of the 1953 Corvette roadster. Encouraged by the show car’s reception, and mindful that America’s burgeoning suburbs were absorbing ever more station wagons, Chevrolet developed the Nomad into a premium Bel Air-level “halo” model for their 1955–57 regular wagon lines. The Nomad two-door sport wagon design was produced through 1957. Each of the three model years still has its passionate followers — the original Nomads have never gone out of style.
1959 | Impala Meets Daytona
On February 20, the now-legendary Impala locked in its first-ever win in its first-ever race. Guided by Bob Welborn’s steady hand and lead foot, the checkered flag started a trend of Daytona dominance for Chevrolet that continues to this day.
Chevrolet Sets the Pace
The “Jet-Smooth” Chevrolet Impala was America’s favorite ride through the Sixties. With its remarkable combination of full-size glamour, performance and practicality, the space-age Chevy was just about perfect for a high-flying era.
But there was more to Chevy’s market domination than one car. Chevrolet expanded its hold on 1960s America with new and innovative compact, midsize and sporty cars. On the truck front, Chevy supplemented its line of large pickups with smaller vans and new kinds of utility vehicles.
Chevrolet introduced restyled pickups and Suburbans for 1960, but the car that grabbed magazine covers was the all-new compact Corvair. The rear-engine newcomer even earned Motor Trend’s coveted Car of the Year honors.
An Impala with trend-setting style and a sporty Corvair Monza coupe were popular 1961 entries and another compact car, the Chevy II Nova, arrived in 1962. The Impala Super Sport, with bucket seats and an optional 409 V8, was big news in ’62 and the all-new 1963 Corvette Sting Ray, featuring a convertible and new fastback coupe, was rightly heralded as an instant classic.
And for Chevy drivers, it just kept getting better. The 1964 Chevelle Malibu found an immediate following as did the sport-styled Camaro in 1967. Camaro paced Indy again in 1969 and the Z28 edition found great success on the racetrack and in the showroom.
From the tail-finned ’60 Impala to the muscular ’69 Chevelle SS396, in the 1960s, it was one hit after another for Chevrolet.
1960 | Mr. Corvette goes to France
Because of an unofficial ban on factory racing at the time, legendary sportsman Briggs Cunningham introduced Corvette to the continent. In its international debut, Corvette ruled the “Big Bore” GT category, scoring the first-ever Chevrolet victory at Le Mans − a winning tradition proudly continued today, most recently with a spectacular GTE Pro class trophy at the 2011 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance race.
1963 | Chevrolet Impala
The Beach Boys sang harmonies to Chevy’s 409-cid big-block V8, rated at a thumping 425 horsepower for 1963. The hardtop ’63 Impala Sport Coupe, with its convertible-look roofline, crisply tailored flanks and pointed fenders, beautifully showcased the big brute of an engine. The sleek 1963 Impala could also be had with a Chevy 283 or 327 small-block V8 engine, and was even available as a 6-cylinder model. The popular Super Sport Package included special SS exterior details and front bucket seats with a console. Collectors drool over ’63 Impalas today — especially when there is an original 409 V8 under the hood — and the ’63 is also a favorite with hot rodders and customizers.
1963 | Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray “Split-Window” Coupe
By 1962, the Chevy Corvette had earned global respect for its performance prowess and was on its way to becoming the favorite, if never official, car of America’s astronauts. It even starred in a hit TV show about a couple of guys on a perpetual road trip on Route 66. Then came the 1963 Corvette Sting Ray. Based on a one-off sports racer penned by GM design chief Bill Mitchell, the Corvette Sting Ray “Split-Window” Coupe was quite possibly the most exciting production car America had yet experienced. Beyond its superbly tailored form, the Sting Ray had a new and effective independent rear suspension, offered extra-potent, fuel-injected small-block V8 power, and, best of all, was surprisingly affordable.
1964 | The Chaparral Can Ams
In 1964, Jim Hall, with covert assistance from Chevrolet Research and Development, shocked race-sanctioning bodies and forever changed the motorsports world. His incredibly innovative designs, incorporating high mounted wings, movable aero packages, underbody suction fans and more, dominated the Can Am circuit, snatching victory at the USRRC Championships in ’64, the 12 Hours of Sebring in ’65, and the Nurburgring 1,000-kilometer in ’66. Following a stunning 1-2 finish at Laguna Seca, race officials finally caught up to the Chaparrals, spelling the beginning of the end for the program. Gone, but not forgotten, the Chaparral spirit lives on in every Cruze Eco we build.
1967 | Chevrolet Pickup
The 1967 Chevy trucks led truck design into a new era. Leaner and cleaner in every line, the new models appeared lower and longer — somehow managing to look both car-like and rugged at the same time. Their large, rounded wheelhouses added a design touch evocative of several popular GM cars of the era. The ’67s were more durable than ever, and were to their core tough machines designed first of all to get the job done. Many features of the new pickup — and the Suburban that shared its styling — were designed to appeal to the still relatively small, but growing, number of customers seeking comfortable and capable trucks for recreational use or personal transportation.
1969 | Chevrolet Camaro
Providing a spectacular grand finale to the first-generation (1967–69) Camaro, the freshly restyled ’69s raced through a year of unprecedented exhilaration. Chevy’s hot four-seat sportster was turning up at the head of the pack everywhere, it seemed. The Z28 was headed for a Trans-Am racing championship, several dozen specially produced ZL-1 aluminum-engined Camaro coupes were providing thunderous thrills at drag strips, and a specially detailed RS/SS 396 Convertible popped up just in time to pace the 1969 Indy 500. No 1969 Camaro would ever become just another used car. The spirit of the now-iconic ’69 is subtly evident throughout the forward-looking 2010 Camaro.
“Baseball, hot dogs, apple pie and Chevrolet”
As the 1970s dawned, Chevrolet flexed its muscles with cars that are still celebrated four decades later. The elegant Monte Carlo “personal luxury coupe” was a new entry for ’70 and very successful. The 1970 Chevelle SS454 with an available LS6 450-hp big-block V8 was one of the most powerful production automobiles of the era, and the totally restyled ’70 Camaro was simply a stunner.
In 1971 Chevy announced Vega, a small car with a sleek, Camaro-influenced appearance. Also new for ’71: a beautiful new Caprice/Impala series with a dramatically upscale appearance offering a clear challenge to much costlier automobiles. The 1973 Monte Carlo was Motor Trend’s Car of the Year. One of Chevrolet’s most memorable advertising campaigns — “Baseball, hot dogs, apple pie and Chevrolet” — hit the airways in 1975. As gasoline prices moved upwards, Chevrolet answered the challenge with the fuel-efficient 1976 Chevette, a “downsized” Impala in 1977 and smaller versions of Monte Carlo and Malibu in 1978.
1970 | Chevrolet El Camino SS
The El Camino “passenger-car pickup” first appeared in 1959 and was, along with the ’60 edition, based on the full-size Chevy. Following a three-year hiatus, the El Camino returned for 1964 as a derivative of the new intermediate-size 1964 Chevelle. The restyled ’68 El Camino was as sleek as any vehicle with a pickup bed could be. That same year, the El Camino was finally available with Super Sport equipment, and buyers could fully partake of the additional muscle car options offered for the Chevelle SS. The 1970 El Camino SS, stuffed with 396- or 454-cid Chevy big-block power, is the ultimate El Camino of the muscle car era.
1970 | Chevrolet Chevelle SS
The muscle car era peaked in 1970, and leading the way to the summit was the SS 454 Chevelle. Chevrolet’s 454-cid big-block, the largest displacement production Chevy V-8 ever, was new for 1970. That same year, GM first permitted engines larger than 400 cid in its intermediate-sized cars. One result was perhaps the most legendary of all Chevy Super Sports, the SS 454 Chevelle. The available 450-horsepower LS-6 big-block could launch the SS 454 to 100 mph in about 13 seconds. Original, unmodified LS-6 SS 454s are rare, investment-grade, collectibles today. However, many enthusiasts build their dream Chevelle SS from Chevy’s Performance Parts catalog – the GM Heritage Center’s ’70, with its modern 505-horsepower, LS7 427 V8, is a sterling example.
1971 | Chevrolet C/10 Cheyenne Pickup
The trend had been building for years, and by 1971, it became impossible to ignore: Mainstream America was falling in love with Chevy trucks. The 1971 trucks helped Chevrolet set a new car and truck calendar year sales record of more than 3 million vehicles that year. On a model-year basis, Chevy truck production for 1971 totaled 739,478, also a record at that point. Of all the Chevrolet truck models offered for ’71, by far the most popular was the 2WD C/10 pickup, with more than a quarter million built. Spurring the half-ton’’ acceptance was the new-for-1971 Cheyenne premium trim package, which raised Chevy pickup interior style and comfort to new levels.
1976 | Chevrolet C/10 Stepside Pickup
Tradition counts in the truck business, and wise truck makers stay mindful of the past while moving ahead. When Chevy launched its smooth-sided, double-walled Fleetside pickup box in mid-1958, it kept the Stepside box in the lineup as well. It would remain available, one way or another, for another 45 years. The classic Stepside design had a small step — really a vestige of the old-time running board — mounted ahead of each rear fender. These were useful for reaching items collected at the front of the bed. Convenience aside, some Chevy pickup buyers just plain liked the look of a Chevy Stepside. The dealer-added paint striping and aftermarket wheels on the Stepside shown provided an individualized custom appearance.
New Challenges, New Chevrolets
New kinds of Chevys were introduced in the 1980s, mostly smaller, more efficient and front-wheel drive. The ’80 Citation, marketed as “The First Chevy of the Eighties,” exemplified this approach with a hatchback design that combined small-car exterior dimensions with the spaciousness of a midsize car. An aero-shaped 1982 Camaro garnered high praise from enthusiasts as did the all-new 1984 Corvette. Other memorable Chevys from the “Heartbeat of America” era included the sporty Beretta coupe and an all-new Silverado Pickup in 1988.
1989 | Chevrolet Corvette ZR-1
Chevy thunder rolled across Europe in 1989 when 24 preproduction ZR-1 Corvettes arrived on the continent for a press tour in the south of France. The ZR-1, also known as the “King of the Hill” Corvette, was powered by a technically advanced 32-valve 4-cam 350-cid V8, developed with Group Lotus of England. Although quite tractable at low speeds, the engine — coded LT5 — had breathtaking performance right to the red line. Engine supply delays pushed the official ZR-1 introduction into the 1990 model year. The GM Heritage Center has two of the 84 ZR-1s built as 1989 models in its collection. In 2009, Chevrolet resurrected the ZR1 designation (sans hyphen) for a new supercharged Corvette model that surpasses the 1990-1995 ZR-1 in performance.
America Goes Trucking
For the first time, in the 1990s, Chevrolet sold more trucks than cars in the United States. The legendary Suburban got a makeover in 1992, emerging as a smoother-riding and even more capable SUV. The popular Blazer 4x4 was updated in 1995 and a new four-door Tahoe SUV made its debut the same year. On the car side, a new Camaro emerged in 1993, drawing rave reviews and the Impala SS nameplate returned on a full-size performance sedan in ’94. The Chevy Monte Carlo coupe, a legend on the street and on the NASCAR track, returned in 1995, this time on a front-wheel drive platform. During this era, many Chevrolet small vehicles were marketed under the GEO nameplate.
1993 | Chevrolet Camaro Z28
The fourth-generation Camaro, featuring completely new and extremely smooth styling, was introduced for 1993 as a coupe only. The Z28 featured a 275-horsepower version of the Corvette LT-1 small-block V8 introduced the year before — making the Camaro performance model the closest car to a Corvette available with a rear seat. A Camaro Z28 paced the 1993 Indianapolis 500, marking the fourth time the brand had served as the Indy Pace Car (earlier appearances were in 1967, 1969 and 1982). As had become tradition, a Pace Car Edition package was offered through Chevy dealers — 645 1993 Z28s were built with the colorfully pin-striped Indy Pace Car package.
1996 | Impala SS
Chevrolet closed out its rear-wheel-drive, full-size sedan lineage in fine style with the 1994-96 Impala SS. The cars offered impressive performance — their 260-horsepower 5.7L LT1 Corvette small-block V8 engine could propel the 4,200-lb. cruisers to more than 90 mph in a quarter mile. A sport-tuned suspension, extra-powerful four-wheel disc brakes, and wide 17-inch tires on special aluminum wheels, were also standard. Exterior moldings matched the body color — black-only in 1994, with dark cherry metallic and dark grey-green also offered during 1995 and 1996. Inside, leather seating surfaces and a leather-covered steering wheel exuded luxury. Originally delivered to a collector, the last 1996 Impala SS built now resides at the GM Heritage Center.
1997 | Victory is electric
Echoing Zora Arkus-Duntov’s dramatic test run in ’56, Larry Ragland made history driving a special Chevy S-10 to victory at the 1997 Pikes Peak Hill Climb. This time, without using a single drop of gas. Not content with taking the Electric Vehicle Class, sounding the death knell for oil and changing the world, Larry went on to prove the viability of electric power − and lay the groundwork for the Chevy Volt − with wins in the 1998-99 Super Stock Truck Class and overall victory in the 2000 High Tech Truck Class.
1997 | Chevrolet Corvette Coupe
The fifth-generation (C5) 1997 Corvette debuted to global acclaim. Everything was fresh, from the taut yet fluid styling, to the new LS1 small-block V8, refined chassis and improved body construction. The transmission was now mounted at the rear axle, an arrangement that contributed to a desirable 50-50 front-to-rear weight distribution. Equipped with an available 6-speed manual transmission, the 1997 C5 could reach 170 mph. From its especially strong hydroformed box frame up, the 1997 C5 was designed to be exceptionally rugged. The C5 convertible, followed the coupe into production a year later, further demonstrated the effectiveness of the new structural design.
1998 | Dale Earnhardt Sr. wins the Daytona 500
After 19 years of chasing the checkered flag at the beach, Dale Sr. finally conquered the Daytona 500, recording his first and only victory in the “Great American Race.” The scene that followed is widely considered to be one of the most touching moments in sports history, as crews and competitors alike lined Pit Road to shake his hand on the long, slow drive to Victory Lane.
SSR Headlines a Noteworthy Decade
After a three-year hiatus, the Impala returned as a front-wheel drive family sedan in 2000. Other early-decade news included a restyled Suburban in 2000, a rugged TrailBlazer SUV in 2002, and a Euro-influenced Malibu in 2004. A retro-styled SSR pickup/roadster with a retractable hardtop roof was an attention-getter and Indy Pace Car in 2005. A handsome new Impala and a heritage-influenced HHR sport wagon arrived in 2006, and a beautifully reshaped Malibu received rave reviews in 2008. The ultra-high-performance Corvette ZR1 made a 2009 debut as the fastest production automobile in GM history. Later that year, enthusiasts salivated as the eagerly awaited 2010 Camaro hit the streets.
2008 | Corvette versus the World
2008: Corvette slayed the monsters − BMW, Ferrari and Porsche − to seize its eighth consecutive Manufacturer’s Championship, making it the most successful team in American Le Mans Series history and conveniently placing Chevrolet in the crosshairs of global competition.
2008 | Chevrolet Hybrid Tahoe
The 2008 Chevy Tahoe Hybrid helped introduce the two-mode hybrid’s green technology to full-size SUVs. In 2004, GM, BMW and DaimlerChrysler engineers set out to jointly develop a two-mode hybrid system suitable for full-size cars and SUVs. A system developed by GM’s Allison Transmission division for use on transit buses was the starting point. The two-mode hybrid system channels gas and electric motive power through an electronically variable transmission, enabling a significant improvement in fuel economy, compared to standard gas-engine powertrains. Chevrolet Tahoe and Silverado models with the two-mode system are still the fuel economy leaders in their segments, with EPA-estimated 20 MPG city and 23 MPG highway.
Still Setting the Pace
In 1911, when Louis Chevrolet built his first automobile, he could not have imagined what would follow. At last count, 214 million Chevrolet cars and trucks.
From the legendary small block V8 the first air bag to the Le Mans-winning Corvette, Chevrolet has a history of challenging conventional thinking. Today, we're using our technological know-how to build a better future for all of us
The extended-range Chevrolet Volt is starting conversations, winning accolades and literally changing the way the world drives. Chevrolet is the global leader in small cars with Cruze, Sonic and the upcoming Spark EV. The momentum continues with the world's most comprehensive fleet of vehicles powered by ethanol, natural gas, electricity and hydrogen.
2010 | Chevrolet Camaro
The TV commercial that introduced the 1967 Camaro showed it emerging from an erupting volcano. For 35 years, an unforgettable lineup of fun-to-own, fun-to-drive Camaros emerged from that metaphoric volcano. In 2002, the mountain went dormant. Then, at the 2006 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, a new Camaro concept emerged to a standing ovation from the media and fans packing the convention hall — and rekindled the passion of the iconic 1969 Camaro. After the concept Camaro upstaged what looked like several volcanoes worth of pyrotechnics and special effects in the 2007 film, TRANSFORMERS®†, the pressure to put it into production intensified. Much to the delight of Camaro enthusiasts everywhere, the new Camaro that emerged onto the automotive scene for 2010 was wonderfully faithful to the concept design — and to the spirit of the original. With the recent addition of a convertible, and soon an ultimate performance ZL1, the Camaro revival is just beginning.
2010 | Cruze crushes WTCC
In a shocking departure from Chevy’s signature large displacement V8s, the Cruze made its presence known at the World Touring Car Championship in 2010. After a season dominating BMWs around the globe, Chevrolet scored a devastating one-two punch − seizing both the Driver’s Championship and the Manufacturer’s Championship. Proving that, yes, there just might be a replacement for displacement.
2011 | Chevrolet Volt
Battery powered for the first 25 to 50 miles after charging up, the revolutionary electric-powered Chevy Volt with its gas-powered generator seamlessly provides additional electricity to continue on for another 300 miles or so, when needed. This extended-range capability frees Volt owners from the range anxiety that can haunt owners of battery-powered cars. Volt was voted 2011 North American Car of the Year by automotive journalists, has collected Green Car Journal’s Car of the Year® award, and was chosen Automobile Magazine’s Automobile of the Year. As of early July 2011, Chevrolet estimated that about two-thirds of the more than 2 million miles driven so far by Volt owners had been on electricity from the grid.
2012 | Chevrolet Corvette Centennial Edition
The 2012 Centennial Edition Corvette pays homage to Chevrolet’s history and racing heritage, even as its bold, edgy monochrome appearance places it firmly in the present. The Centennial Edition package (code ZLC) can be ordered on any 2012 Corvette model, and is available exclusively in carbon flash metallic, with satin-black graphics and unique Centennial satin black wheels accented by red brake calipers. Ever since 1955, when the fledgling Corvette was first fitted with the new small-block Chevrolet V8, Corvette has personified the passion and performance of Chevrolet, and it has held a unique position as America’s sports car, winning fans and races worldwide as erstwhile competitors came and went. Most recently, Corvette won the GTE class at the 2011 24 Hours of Le Mans, beating Ferrari, BMW and Porsche.