Corvette Quick to Apply Technologies Which Later Became Mainstream in the Automobile

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In a article by Jerry Burton, published in the special October 31, 2011 Chevrolet Centennial Celebration issue of Automotive News, a list of technologies introduced in the Corvette, beginning with the 1953 model, demonstrates the advanced thinking found in the Corvette.  These technologies include:

Composite body panels: The first high-production application of fiberglass or glass-fiber reinforced plastic occurred on the Corvette. Composite bodies have been a trademark ever since.

Fiberglass leaf springs: They debuted on the 1981 Corvette on the rear suspension, and were applied on the front suspension beginning in 1984. The fiberglass springs are stronger, lighter and take up less space.

Fuel injection: The technology debuted on the 1957 Corvette. It provided more power and better fuel economy.

Anti-lock brakes: The Corvette was one of the first American cars to feature standard four-wheel disc brakes (1965) and was also one of the first to feature anti-lock brakes (1986). In 1991, anti-lock brakes were integrated into the Corvette's traction control system.

Stability control: One of the first mainstream applications of a stability control system occurred with the Active Handling System on the 1998 Corvette, which applied brakes to individual wheels.

Tire pressure warning system: Since 1989, the Corvette has offered a sensor that continuously monitors the air pressure in each tire whenever the car is driven.

Anti-theft system: In 1986, the Corvette offered one of the industry's first systems to prevent theft. It featured a code embedded in the ignition key that prevented a thief from starting the car without the proper key.

Hydroformed frames: Beginning with the fifth-generation Corvette, that debuted in 1997, all Corvettes feature a light but stiff hydroformed perimeter frame combined with a rigid center structure. The frame is formed by means of highly pressurized fluid and allows for superior handling without diminishing ride quality.

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