The Chevrolet Corvette is an unbeatable sports car when it comes to value. Older iterations are still very good, and owning one won’t break the bank, but there are differences in performance between the various generations. A new video from TFLclassics shows the decade difference made with Corvettes, pitting the 1988 C4 against the 1999 C5.
The C4 packs a 5.7-liter V8 under its hood. It produces 245 horsepower (182 kilowatts) and 340 pound-feet (460 Newton-meters) of torque. The C5 produces more horsepower, pumping out 345 (257 kilowatts) from its 5.7-liter LS1. However, the engine’s torque rating is similar to that of the C4’s– 350 lb-ft (474 Nm). Another difference between the two cars is the gearbox, with the C5 pairing the engine with an automatic while the C4 has a four-speed manual.
The C5’s extra power is immediately apparent. It rolled off the starting line, gaining a sizable advantage over the C4, which was struggling for traction. The C4 was unable to close the gap and lost nearly as much, crossing the quarter-mile finish in 16.89 seconds at 89 miles per hour (143 kilometers per hour). The C5 finished first in 15.24 seconds at 99.2 mph (159.6 kph).
The race got off to a good start for C4, who may have jumped the start, but the stronger C5 reclaimed first place before crossing the finish line. The C4 isn’t far behind. The final braking test ended with a big surprise, even though both cars have an anti-lock braking system. The old Chevy stopped at 109 feet from 60 mph (96 kph), beating the C5. The 1999 Corvette required 122 feet to stop, but the C4 recently completed a thorough brake service that included new pads and new fluids, likely giving it an advantage.
Corvettes have come a long way since the C4 and C5 generations. The C8 flips the script for the icon, finally making it a mid-engined sports car that somehow remains a performance bargain. Each generation of Corvette has improved from the last, and this battle shows how much can change in just a decade.