2024 Chevy Corvette E-Ray Is Brutally Quick Even without Launch Control 2.9 sec.

If you find yourself at a stoplight without enough time to activate the special launch mode, you’ll still rocket to 60 mph in under 3.0 seconds.Headshot of Rich CepposBY RICH CEPPOSPUBLISHED: OCT 27, 2023

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  • The 2024 Chevy Corvette E-Ray posted a 2.5-second 60-mph time in our instrumented performance testing—the quickest ever for a Vette.
  • On the street, the E-Ray’s combined 655 horsepower, all-wheel-drive traction, and instant electric-motor torque make it a stoplight hellion, capable of brutal launches that are as easy to attain as flooring the accelerator.
  • To see how the E-Ray would fare in a theoretical stoplight drag race, we launched the E-Ray with and without launch control to see the difference in acceleration times.

Welcome to Car and Driver’Testing Hub, where we zoom in on the test numbers. We’ve been pushing vehicles to their limits since 1956 to provide objective data to bolster our subjective impressions (you can see how we test here).

The time it takes a car to go from rest to 60 mph is one of the most important, best-understood, and longest-running benchmarks for judging performance—and for winning one-upmanship arguments that erupt between car enthusiasts. Our standard array of acceleration tests unearth that 60-mph time, among numerous other performance data points, as scientifically as possible in order to extract the quickest acceleration result.

We test on a closed, flat, proving-ground track, utilize the driving technique that will deliver the quickest time—that can mean using a car’s launch-control system, or not—run our tests in two directions to account for the effects of wind, and then average the two best runs and also correct the results to standard weather conditions. (Temperature and humidity affect horsepower in internal-combustion engines).

WE TEST THE HYBRID AWD VETTE

No Time for Launch Control?

Thorough as this data-gathering is, the hybrid all-wheel-drive Corvette E-Ray got us thinking: What could it do without the effect of launch control? Activating launch control in the Corvette is a bit tedious. First, the Performance Traction Management (PTM) system must be set to Track, Race 1, or Race 2. If a burnout is required to clean off the tires, Race 2 is required. With the correct PTM mode selected, launch control is now available. From there, the custom launch-control interface is accessible through the steering wheel controls. The engine rpm can be adjusted to compensate for wheel spin, as can the target slip percentage. Or launch control can be left in Auto mode and the E-Ray will figure out what’s best.

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One of the things we love about the E-Ray out on the road is its brutal, instantaneous, and easily accessible acceleration. Thanks to the 495-hp 6.2-liter V-8 in its tail pumping power to the rear wheels, a 160-hp electric motor driving its front wheels, and a 1.1-kWh battery that’s almost always at a 70-percent-or-higher level of charge on the street, the E-Ray leaps ahead from almost any speed. And with all-wheel-drive traction it launches from stoplights as if shot out of a Howitzer.

So how quick is it to 60 mph in a real-world driving scenario when the light turns green? What if you rolled up to a stoplight to find, say, a 797-hp Dodge Charger Hellcat Redeye in the next lane and the E-Ray’s launch control isn’t prepped for battle? Could you still beat the Dodge—theoretically, of course—if all you did was slam your right foot to the floor when the light turned green?

A Stoplight to 60 MPH Takes 2.9 Ticks not to bad

In the interest of science we performed exactly that gas-it-and-go run with our VBox test equipment attached to the E-Ray. In a previous test of a Charger Hellcat Redeye it hurtled to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds with its launch control disengaged; it was slightly slower with it on. The E-Ray hit 60 in 2.5 seconds in our track testing—the quickest time we’ve ever recorded for a Corvette—with its adjustable launch control on and optimized. However, with no help from launch control, the E-Ray clocked in at 2.9 seconds. So, the Charger driver would be watching the E-Ray’s quad exhaust pipes fade into the distance.

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Part of our normal testing includes a 5-to-60-mph rolling start, in which we creep at 5 mph and then smash the accelerator. This test removes the effects of a high-rpm, launch-control start. The E-Ray completes the rolling start in 3.1 seconds, just 0.2-second slower than smashing the throttle from a standstill.

How would the E-Ray fare in a stoplight shootout against other hypercars like the Ferrari 296GTB or Lamborghini Huracán STO? That’s a good question; we don’t have comparative 60 mph data for other supercars, which we virtually always test with their launch control on.

So be it. This fun foray into a different sort of test nonetheless underscores our subjective impression of the E-Ray’s performance: how easy it is to make the hybrid Corvette hurtle away from almost anything else on the road in a stoplight drag race—theoretically, of course.

EXTRA CORVETTE E-RAY READING