The first Corvette came to fruition in the form of the C1 in 1953. Chevrolet’s first try at a sports car took off like a rocket; the Corvette was small, light and fast, and it featured some of the most futuristic hallmarks at the time. An independent front suspension found its way on the ‘Vette, and a small-block V8 was eventually made the primary power source (along with a matching three-speed manual transmission) in 1956.
The commencing of the C2 Corvette brought a handful of trendy options at the time such as hidden headlamps, but also upped the ante by incorporating an independent rear suspension to match the front’s handling characteristics. Save for trucks and SUVs, most cars nowadays utilize a complete independent suspension from the factory, yet the Corvette has since the early ’60s.
Truly a car ahead of its time, the Corvette began to get better and better with each passing generation. The C3 platform brought touring sports car styling, a larger mill, and was the last generation to offer a big-block V8 in a ‘Vette. Moreover, the C4 brought even more futuristic offerings, including an LCD digital display and an all-aluminum suspension construction which offered strength and weight savings.
The 1990 ZR-1 offered a newer, more modern engine option which was a 5.7-liter DOHC LT5 V8 designed by Lotus. Little did we know that a DOHC V8 might find its way into a Corvette again; perhaps in the new mid-engine C8. Of course, we’ve skipped over the C5, C6 and current-gen C7, so check out the video above and get familiar with America’s most popular sports car.