The C8 Mid-Engine Corvette Gets Chevy's "Flying Car Mode"

Onboard accelerometers sense when the car has left the ground, and turn off traction control so power isn't cut.


Remember GM's "Flying Car Mode?" It was a software program first introduced in the 2010 Chevy Corvette ZR1 help improve the car's lap times on track. Now, it's coming to the C8 Corvette.

Speaking with reporters at Chevy's Spring Mountain Corvette school this week, performance manager Alex MacDonald confirmed thas Flying Car Mode is indeed a feature on the C8, included as part of Magnetic Ride Control 4.0.

The program was initially conceived during the ZR1's development in the late 2000s. The car would catch air during points on a race track, and every time, the tires would spin up, causing traction control to kick in and bog the engine down—not great for momentum or acceleration. With Flying Car Mode, the car would use position sensors to identify when the wheels left the ground, and momentarily turn off traction control so it wouldn't intervene, solving the issue.

This time around, the sensors have been replaced with accelerometers for more accuracy and speed. The system is so quick, that it can actually read what the front wheels are doing before that same piece of road reaches the rear wheels, and adjust the traction as necessary. For example, if the front wheels get lightly loaded all of a sudden, the computer can tell the traction system the same thing is about to happen to the rear wheels, and cut traction so it doesn't intervene and bog down the car. Smart stuff.

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