Z06 PURCHASE CONSIDERATIONS
BUYING IN CANADA
Purchasing a Corvette Z06, much less any car, is a somewhat involved process and knowledge is money in your pocket. Purchasing in Canada is a bit simpler than the US as the Z06 is extremely limited so, if you can get one (and get one at MSRP) grab it now! There was an unofficial initial allocation of only 28 Z06’s set in Canada for 2015 which grew to a total number of 329 according to the Corvette Museum Numbers breakdown just released. 329 Canadian version Z06’s in a total build of 8653 for 2015 means Canada accounted for under 4% of Corvette Z06 sales. This is very surprising considering the Canada-wide waiting lists and high number of potential buyers who gladly placed their $5000 deposit, only to have it later returned with the news that the dealer didn’t actually receive an allocation.
Absolute truth… We started looking in August 2014 for our Z06, only to learn that they were all accounted for. Canada had received allocation prior to the US dealers of a very small number, believed to be 28. We called EVERY Corvette dealer starting from British Columbia and actually added the number up and which dealers had them allocated (as best we could). When we called Cartier Chev Olds in Quebec City, they stated that they had a single allocation which had yet to be taken by any buyer. They related that they were just a bit confused as to why. After they were nice enough to confirm the allocation through the GM District Rep, we gladly placed our downpayment for that Corvette Z06. This is a picture of myself, Guy Lefebvre of GM on the left and Christian Parrot, the VP of Cartier Chev Olds on the right. Do I look happy? Just ask if myself or my wife got tired driving the 9 hour drive back to Niagara!
BUYING IN THE US
Let me start off by saying I haven’t bought a Corvette in the US but have read enough to contribute with a valuable thought or two. Some of these points are also key things that should be asked in the Canadian purchase process as well. Cars are being sold at tens of thousands above MSRP in both countries and…well once again… knowledge is money in your pocket! The US has some great dealers that get a ton of Corvettes such as Kerbeck, Mac Mulkin, Hendrick, Stanford and Criswell to name just a few.
They have allocation and most will sell you a car at MSRP, and even transport to you, with very little difficulty. They are the experts. We have seen too many people this past year place a deposit on an allocation that the dealer never had. Make sure they have that allocation! Many others failed to look at their preliminary sales agreement, not realizing the difference between ‘refundable and non-refundable’, having at one point to actually negotiate return of their monies. I know of one example where the preliminary agreement stated ‘non-refundable’ and the dealer later tried to tell the potential customer they would hold that deposit, making sure they got 2016’s first allocation. Ensure your paperwork says refundable, has everything on it that should be there, and even include a time frame for delivery if you can.
Last but not least, there is rumor that supplier pricing may be accepted in 2016 so look into it, but don’t count on it. Finding a discount on a US Z06 last year was very uncommon. There were, and still are waiting lists. One could be waiting for ever if they are looking for that huge discount and you could find yourself stuck in that cycle that you never get what you want. It is very important to realize that dealerships are totally independent of GM when it comes to vehicle pricing. They have every right to place a market adjustment of $20,000 on the same Z06 that another might give you a few thousand dollars off on. Pricing is at their discretion and they are a business; they aren’t there to throw money away.
Are you aware that dealers can refuse to honor, not only GM discount marketing programs, but also price increases between when you placed your order and the Z06 arrived?
As if the Z06 listed specifications weren’t impressive enough, GM went out to validate their claims through several track runs, even crashing a Z06 in the process. If anyone was going to put the Z06 through its paces, Jim Mero Aand GM were sure to accomplish that. Mero’s run at Virginia International Raceway was probably the eye opener of all runs for the Z06, pulling in a track record of 2:41.3, a record previously held by the Porsche 918 Spyder (2:43.1).
In a world where tenths of a second account for so much, this lap time literally blew away racing enthusiasts and placed a spotlight on the Corvette Z06 that wouldn’t soon fade.
Next up, the Z06 was taken right out of the hands of GM and put to the test by Auto Bild Sportscars at Sachenring, Germany where they beat the track record there by a whopping two seconds with a laptime of 1:30.47. Two seconds might not really seem that impressive to a non-racer until you look at the class of cars that the Z06 placed ahead of; Ferrari 458 Speciale, Lamborghini Huracan LP, McLaren 650 and the Porsche family to name just a few. The next times we wait for on the German circuit are of course the Nurburgring lap times in GM’s second attempt after the first resulted in a crash. GM has already boasted about very impressive numbers in this second run, choosing to play this mystery out for some time as they have yet to post the results.
Coincidentally, this track has shut down any further manufacturer track testing since the Z06 run. Could this be a sign?
The one consistent that has become very evident with the Z06 is that it is a true ‘supercar’ and probably the only available at under $100,000. Where it should see competitors such as the Dodge Hell Cat, the SRT Viper, or maybe even the Nissan GT-R Nismo, the Z06 seems to be standing beside those cherished favorites several times it’s price. Forum posts have shown examples of Ferrari, Porsche and even a McLaren owner trading in their supercars for that first chance at a Chevrolet Corvette Z06.
In considering the overall build, performance and interior of the Z06, GM could have easily tacked on another 20K, however, pricing and strategy go hand in hand. Do we think the timing of Dodge’s decision to cut pricing of their SRT Viper by $15,000 was anything but coincidental? Imagine having paid that significantly higher price tag for your 13/14 Viper only to read about the $15,000 price drop of the new ’15 model Viper in the paper one morning! Good ole Dodge took care of those customers and promised them an equivalent discount if they elected to trade in for the newer 2015 Viper….well…trade in with the expected market depreciation that is.