The Last Muscle Car?

GM debuts the Corvette ZR1—but will the energy bill kill its kind?
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 20, 2007 6:35 PM CST

(Newser) – GM will unveil the latest version of the Corvette at the Detroit auto show next month in all its supercharged, performance-car glory. But the 2009 Corvette ZR1 may actually be the last of an endangered breed—the Detroit muscle car. The new energy bill, with its stricter fuel economy standards, could make such models obsolete, the AP reports.

"High-performance vehicles such as this may actually be legislated out of existence,” said Corvette’s chief engineer. Under the bill, GM would have to offset cars like the ZR1 by producing others that run at 45mpg. But others say it’s too early to count out muscle cars. Even if they’re powered by smaller or electric motors, “Americans typically want to buy big, high-performance, fun cars,” said an industry analyst.