Documentary

New documentary offers an insider's look at the making of the the 8th-generation Corvette

The Chevrolet Corvette Stingray coupe and convertible are profiled in a new documentary.

Photo courtesy of Chevrolet

Chevrolet has released a two-part documentary series sharing the story behind the making of the 2020 Chevrolet Corvette. The 2020 Corvette is the first model year of the vehicle's eighth generation and the first to offer a mid-engine setup.

The first part of "Revolution: The Mid-Engine Corvette Development Story" showcases the design story of the 'Vette via unique footage and in-depth interviews. Designers talk about the evolution of the Corvette including how its design was dictated by the function of the car and informed by the heritage of the Corvette line, which stretches back to the 1950s.

2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

Photo courtesy of Chevrolet

Additionally, designers dig into the impact of the annual 24 Hours of Le Mans has had on the model line, and how on-the-track performance impacts the vehicle designed for the average customer.

The 2020 Corvette was designed as new from the ground up with the mid-engine format dictating much of what went where. It was in 2011 that the company brought back the idea for a mid-engine 'Vette and development ticked along through the vehicle's debut day in 2019. Engineering work on more performance-focused versions of the Corvette is ongoing.

As part of the process, Chevrolet developed several scale clay models. General Motors recycles its clay as part of its sustainability initiatives.

The documentary also features a look into the design of the interior of the car. The driver-focused design features unique attributes including a raised button bar that separates the driver from the passenger of the coupe.

Chevrolet closes the first part of the documentary showing a behind-the-scenes look at the debut of the car, which took place in Orange County, California.

The second episode of the series features the engineering story.

The two parts equal about 20 minutes of storytelling. Chevy released the first part of the documentary on December 22. The second installment was revealed today on the company's YouTube page. Watch both parts below.

Revolution: The Mid-Engine Corvette Development Story – Part 1: Design | Chevrolet www.youtube.com

Revolution: The Mid-Engine Corvette Development Story – Part 2: Engineering | Chevrolet www.youtube.com

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The 2022 Lexus ES will debut next week.

Photo courtesy of Lexus

The meat and potatoes of the Lexus sedan lineup, the ES, is due for a refresh, and it will get one. The 2022 Lexus ES will be shown publicly for the first time this Sunday as part of the festivities of the Shanghai auto show.

While the photo doesn't tell a lot, there's some things you can bet on in the 2022 ES. For starters, look for all the improvements that the auto has gotten over the last two years to carry over into the new model. That includes the addition of all-wheel drive to the lineup and standard blind spot monitor and rear cross traffic alert.

The ES Black Line may not make its way to the 2022 version of the midsize sedan. Generally, blacked out editions are available only at the tail end of a model run ahead of a refresh or generational redesign. However, the blacked out elements could become available as part of a package.

The headlight photo that Lexus has offered as a teaser shows a housing that is not dissimilar to the one that the Lexus IS wears. However, the daytime running light is on the bottom here, instead off the top. Like the IS, there are strong hood lines.

At the back, the preview video shows a vehicle that is very similar to the current model. It's taillights, a strong chrome line that runs the width of the year, and rear lip spoiler all look mostly same as before.

As for what to expect underneath the body of the car, there's not a lot of indication from the teasers, which leads one to believe that's where the biggest changes are coming. There's a good chance that we'll finally say goodbye to the Lexus touch pad in favor of a touch screen display that's within a comfortable distance.

It's also likely that Lexus will fine tune the dynamics of the ES in a similar fashion to how the Lexus IS got more performance-focused driving dynamics in its latest redo.

Stay tuned for more specifics are the curtain is pulled back on April 19 in China (April 18 in the U.S.).

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Domino's and Nuro announced their partnership in 2019 — and now the robots are hitting the roads.

Photo courtesy of Nuro

After announcing their partnership to work on pizza deliveries via self-driving robots in 2019, Dominos and Nuro have officially rolled out their technology to one part of town.

Beginning this week, if you place a prepaid order from Domino's in Woodland Heights (3209 Houston Ave.), you might have the option to have one of Nuro's R2 robot come to your door. This vehicle is the first do deliver completely autonomously without occupants with a regulatory approval by the U.S. Department of Transportation, according to a news release.

"We're excited to continue innovating the delivery experience for Domino's customers by testing autonomous delivery with Nuro in Houston," says Dennis Maloney, Domino's senior vice president and chief innovation officer, in the release. "There is still so much for our brand to learn about the autonomous delivery space. This program will allow us to better understand how customers respond to the deliveries, how they interact with the robot and how it affects store operations."

Orders placed at select dates and times will have the option to be delivered autonomously. Photo courtesy of Nuro

Nuro Domino's delivery vehicle

The Nuro deliveries will be available on select days and times, and users will be able to opt for the autonomous deliveries when they make their prepaid orders online. They will then receive a code via text message to use on the robot to open the hatch to retrieve their order.

"Nuro's mission is to better everyday life through robotics. Now, for the first time, we're launching real world, autonomous deliveries with R2 and Domino's," says Dave Ferguson, Nuro co-founder and president, in the release. "We're excited to introduce our autonomous delivery bots to a select set of Domino's customers in Houston. We can't wait to see what they think."

California-based Nuro has launched a few delivery pilots in Houston over the past few years, including the first Nuro pilot program with Kroger in March 2019, grocery delivery from Walmart that was revealed in December 2019, and pharmacy delivery that launched last summer.

From being located in a state open to rolling out new AV regulations to Houston's diversity — both in its inhabitants to its roadways, the Bayou City stood out to Nuro, says Sola Lawal, product operations manager at Nuro.

"As a company, we tried to find a city that would allow us to test a number of different things to figure out what really works and who it works for," Lawal says on an episode of the Houston Innovators Podcast. "It's hard to find cities that are better than Houston at enabling that level of testing."

You can find out which self-driving vehicles are being tested in your neck of the woods by clicking here.


This article first appeared on AutomotiveMap's sister site InnovationMap.

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