The 2021 Corvette received numerous small changes over the 2020 model year, including two new available exterior colors and a new interior color option. We covered these various changes extensively in a previous post, but there’s one difference between the 2021 and 2020 model year Corvette that has so far gone unnoticed by many.
The 2020 Corvette was supposed to receive a plaque on the standard 6.2L LT2 V8 engine that read “Chevrolet Tonawada” with the words “The Number 1 Team” emblazoned underneath, but an issue with the badge suppliers meant they were never installed on any 2020 Corvette models.
According to Corvette Forum poster Marc NY, Chevy has now resolved the vendor issue and all 2021 Corvette models will ship with the plaque installed.
These badges are a nod to the hardworking guys and girls at the GM Tonawanda Engine plant in Buffalo, New York, who build the powerful fifth-generation Small Block engine that is installed in the C8 Corvette. The original Corvette Forum poster says the new plaques are “on a rigid aluminum backing,” and are “much heavier and thicker than what the original Tonawanda Engine decals were because they were made on a very thin film.”
The Tonawanda plaque is located in the middle of one of the valve covers on the 6.2L LT2 V8 engine. The silver plaque features blue and red font and a red Chevrolet bowtie emblem. This plaque is actually a recreation of the engine build plaque that was featured on the valve covers of Tonawanda-built engines in some older Chevy models like the first-generation Camaro, which explains the throwback design.
GM did not say why the 2020 Corvette did not shop with the Tonawanda engine plaque, although rumors allege a problem with the badge adhesive made them hard to separate after they were shipped from the manufacturer.
The GM 6.2L LT2 V8 engine in the 2020 Corvette produces 490 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque. When equipped with the optional Performance Exhaust, those figures climb to 495 horsepower and 470 pound-feet.