The 2023 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 is an American supercar that can give Italian exotics a hard time for a fraction of the cost. Alas, we may have to forget about that last part, as finding a C8 Z06 that sells for or at least close to the MSRP (manufacturer’s suggested retail price) seems almost impossible these days. For example, a Chevrolet dealer is currently auctioning off Z06s, with the minimum bid set at $50,000 over MSRP.
ADMs (added dealer markups) are nothing new. However, these have become a more visible issue following the global health crisis, chip shortage, and supply chain disruptions.
Those factors have kept demand high and supply low. And while the past few months have shown a certain slowdown in the price-boosting effect, with many vehicles once again spending more time on dealer lots, we can’t generalize. In fact, if we take a look at highly anticipated performance (or luxury) vehicles like the C8 Z06, people willing to pay ridiculous markups keep adding fuel to the fire.
For the record, the 2023 Corvette Z06 Coupe has an MSRP of $105,300, while the Z06 Convertible packs an MSRP of $112,800, obviously before options and taxes.
Just earlier this month, a 2023 Z06 sold for $275,000 during Mecum‘s Kissimmee 2023 auction. That was an extremely visible transaction that many perceived as a legitimization of such practices. And it wasn’t even an example with rich options, so you can forget about the Z07 performance package.
The Chevrolet dealer inviting customer to bid starting at $50k above MSRP
And, at the time of press, Connell Chevrolet of California has two 2023 Z06 Convertibles listed on its website. Both display $80,000 markups, which brings their showcased prices to $217,890 and $215,585.
However, check out the details of each vehicle and you’ll notice the bidding details mentioned above: “This vehicle will be sold to the highest bidder on Saturday April 26, minimum bid $50k over MSRP,” the descriptions of the vehicle read.
Given all the markup frenzy, we’ll pretend to play the game and ask this: how does the bidding even work, is there a dedicated platform to at least ensure transparency for those willing to throw money into this?
Apparently not—YouTube Speed Phenom, who owns a 2023 Z06 and pointed out this dealer’s practice in his latest video (embedded below), shows us an email that appears to have been sent out to a potential customer from an employee of the company—check out the screenshot in the gallery.
In the email, it is said that anybody interested in placing a bid should reply with the offer and the VIN of the desired car. Subsequently, the employee will get back to the customer with the overall situation, so the latter can decide whether to keep bidding or not, before a set date and time. Oh, and the email ends with “happy bidding”!
Once again, these aren’t even top-spec examples of the 5.5L flat-plane crank 670 hp speed demon. And it appears using this kind of configuration is a widespread practice among dealers getting these Chevy performance models with the intention to sell at artificially inflated prices.
What has GM done to address the Z06 pricing situation?
One year ago, General Motors sent a letter to its dealers, informing the businesses that their vehicle allocations could be redistributed if they ask customers to pay above MSRP for high-demand models like the 2023 Corvette Z06, 2024 Chevy Silverado EV, and others.
Some dealers may have complied, but others went searching for loopholes, which they found. One common practice, which is also highlighted in the clip below, is to sell these supercars as used vehicles, despite the mileage and/or ownership time clearly showcasing this is not the case.
This often involves working together with used vehicle dealers that either resell the machines to customers directly or sell them back to dealers in automakers’ networks—we mentioned this M.O. yesterday when talking about the markups for the 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R being hefty enough to rival the price of a brand new Ram TRX!
Another case that went viral earlier this month involved Chevrolet dealer Ed Morse Sawgrass Automall. The Florida-based dealership was trying to push a Z06 with a $$99,995 don’t-call-it-a-markup “ED MORSE Protection Package”.
Brooks Weisblat of dragtimes.com posted the window sticker of the ‘Vette on Instagram and, after multiple websites published articles on it, the online listing for the car miraculously returned to MSRP. We just checked their online inventory, and while it shows zero Corvettes, we can’t tell how much that car actually went for.
As mentioned in our 2023 Raptor R article, dealers aren’t the only ones who get greedy. Individual flippers can cause just as much trouble. GM had a plan for this too: last year, it announced that the warranty for any C8 Z06 resold sooner than one year would be voided. Later in the year, the carmaker changed its decision, shortening the interval to 6 months—this still stands.
However, as sales like the Mecum one demonstrate, the lack of a warranty hasn’t kept buyers from going ahead with the process.
2024 Chevrolet Corvette E-Ray Markups and Flippers, the first details
At the time this article was published, we couldn’t find any GM announcement aimed at dealers or flippers that would mention the latest, hybrid C8 specifically. However, with deliveries set to start sometime this year, perhaps things will change.
Even so, there’s already talk of markups online. For one, Corvette Forum user longtracker claims he is first in line for the E-Ray at Idaho-based Peterson Chevrolet, having been informed (in person) that the car will get a $25,000 markup. Is that a fortunate case, should we brace ourselves for values rivaling those of the Z06? We’ll find out some months from now.
Meanwhile, we’ll remind you that the first-ever hybrid and AWD Corvette packs 655 hp. That’s 495 hp from the C8 Stingray-borrowed, mid-mounted LT2 V8, plus 160 hp front the front-siting electric motor. Just so we have an anchor, we’ll remind everybody the 2024 Corvette E-Ray comes with an MSRP of $104,295 for the Coupe, with this climbing to $111,295 if you choose the Convertible.