The Batman Corvette Batmobile Emerges as the Mid-Engined C3 GM Almost Built in Dark Rendering

In the two weeks that have passed since The Batman title brought Matt Reeves’s glorious, gritty take on the franchise into theaters across the world, we covered the new digitally-designed Batmobile and Batcycle that Robert Pattison puts to Gotham-saving use in the motion picture. And the main trait of those machines is their realism, which has led a wave of fantasizing about other vehicles that could serve the Caped Crusader. So, how about another pixel design, this time casting a Chevrolet Corvette in the role of the Batmobile?

Sure, the movie vehicles came with a brief, but digital artist Ash Thorp, who was tasked with putting them together, dialed things to eleven and they’ve been acclaimed by the industry and cinephiles alike.

Nevertheless, the C3 Corvette take on the Batmobile that brought us here—as you’ll see, this is partially rooted in reality—comes from digital artist Ardiansyah (aka a_annsyah).

Now, the 3D master doesn’t mention any Batman links, but, given similarities between this ‘Vette contraption and the classic muscle car-inspired 2022 Batmobile, we just had to talk about this machine in the Batman context. Not only do these cars come with a dark, raw overall appearance, but they both feature a penetrating front end and an open posterior.

As for the said real-life link mentioned above, most, if not all, Batmobile to dates, 2022 iteration included, have been powered by Chevy V8s.

A Corvette base with Porsche accents

This digital creation’s ties to the C3 Corvette are still clearly visible, even though there are multiple layers here. For one, we’re feasting our eyes on a racer-like appearance for what is a mid-engined take on the classic ‘Vette, with many of the elements that keep the overly aggressive body panels in place being clearly visible.

Up front, the C3’s pop-up headlights were removed for a more poised appearance, but there’s an overall modern twist to the 1970s creation, carbon-built lower aero “suit” included. Admittedly, the wonder material wouldn’t exactly be suitable for all the bashing the Batmobile takes, but those pieces can always be replaced by metal ones. And while we’re at it, placing the fuel cell up front, as the artist has done for better weight distribution, would probably not make it to the list of features for a Batmobile either.

As for the open posterior, this borrows a page from the Porsche 935 1970s endurance champion book. It reveals the high-mount intercooler, while the turbos feeding the motor, supposedly a V8, sit behind side openings that seem inspired by the current C8.

A project in honor of the great mind behind Corvette Zora Arkus-Duntov. The project created around this man concept which are putting the engine in the mid engine layout but still keep the esque of Corvette. I keep this basic 2 components and mix it with European racing cars. I took the base from C3 Corvette imsa race car and combine it with the the Porsche 935 ,” (sic) Ardiansyah, who even nicknamed the vehicle ZORA, explains on Instagram.

Now, who was Zora Arkus-Duntov (tip: mid-engined Corvette) and what’s up with the IMSA C3 Corvette racecars? We’ll answer these question below, with this part of the story also showing how the (C3) Corvette navigated the complicated situation of the 1970s.

The idea of a mid-engined Corvette has been around for six decades

Switching the Corvette to a mid-engine layout for the eighth generation that landed in 2020 was a highly successful move for Chevrolet, as proven by the sales numbers. However, the midship layout of the C8 didn’t come out of thin air, instead following a series of nine or ten concepts that started flowing in since the 1950s. And one of the most intense periods for these show cars, as well as for the production ‘Vette itself was the 1970s.

Famed Corvette developer Zora Arkus-Duntov, who was the Chevy’s first chief engineer, first came up with a midship concept in 1959, in the form of the CERV I Corvette.

Now, that Chevrolet Engineering Research Vehicle was a single-seater, thus deviating from the Corvette formula. However, the nine midship ‘Vette concepts that trailed it, some of which were not to Zora’s liking (e.g. the rotary-powered ones), were much closer to the recipe of America’s Sports Car. And no less than five of these were built throughout the 1970s, raising the expectations for a production model towards the sky.

The C3 Corvette marked the switch from brute to tourer

Meanwhile, in showrooms, the ’70s saw the C3 Corvette, which was introduced in 1967 with a new exterior and interior while building on the chassis and engines of its C2 predecessor, going from a muscle car attitude to a more refined touring offering starting from 1973.

For a design standpoint, the transition was welcome, with the more streamlined styling being applauded. However, the said year also marked the start of the Malaise Era, an oil crisis-dominated decade that sent engine outputs tumbling as American carmakers were struggling to meet the stricter emission standards.

However, as far as racing was concerned, the C3 ‘Vette was taken to new heights while its road siblings were dealing with the said issues (here’s how the Camaro had a somewhat similar fate). And it was mostly thanks to the efforts of brothers John and Burt Greenwood, the sons of a former GM executive.

Even Zora Arkus-Duntov helped with the development of the brothers’ racecars, which reached 750 horsepower at their peak. The track beasts even took on Le Mans twice during what was a Porsche-dominated decade. And while they didn’t cross the finish line, the Greenwood ‘Vettes enjoyed massive success on their home turf (think SCCA and IMSA series).

Returning to this highly photorealistic C3 rendering, the pixel portrait takes the machine as far from its original form as possible while still retaining its visual presence. And, our Batman connection aside, this is a serious achievement.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here