AngryCorvair
AngryCorvair MegaDork
9/1/18 4:36 p.m.

Just playing with some ideas at this point, so looking for experiences with C6 as daily driver.  

759NRNG
759NRNG SuperDork
9/1/18 4:40 p.m.

There where you live currently in Michigan or in San Diego after you win powerball????

AngryCorvair
AngryCorvair MegaDork
9/1/18 4:44 p.m.

In reply to 759NRNG :

Whatever I buy is going to be four-seasons daily here in MI.  So from thanksgiving to Easter a C6 would have 4 fronts with skinny Blizzaks on it.

hhaase
hhaase HalfDork
9/1/18 6:31 p.m.

My Wife did it with a C5 for about 100k miles,  4 seasons.    The only real issue was  frequent nails and screws due to working in an industrial park.  Eventually I just kept a plug kit and small compressor in the car.   This was in the northeast,  so lots of black ice and occasional deep snow.  

With proper tires it was very surprisingly capable in rain, snow, and ice.  Neither of us ever considered it a safety issue.   Just had to be careful with snow depth due to ground clearance,  but the contact patch side did keep it from sinking too deep.  Only ever got stuck at the end of the driveway after the plows left a big snow pile while coming home from work.  

turtl631
turtl631 HalfDork
9/1/18 7:27 p.m.

I drove a C6 Z06 a solid year here in Milwaukee, with snows on C6 base sized wheels.  It was fine.  Moved on because baby and needed backseat.  Go for it!

Snrub
Snrub HalfDork
9/1/18 8:54 p.m.

I vote do it. I've always found ground clearance for snow only really matters if you live out in  the country on a gravel road. I did that successful daily driving a FC RX-7, including with a 3' overnight dump. Granted I drove behind a truck which semi-cleared a path to a main road. To be fair the plastic peice which directs air into the rad looks exceptional low in a C6.

If you get a Grand sport or Z06 I believe they are all aluminum underneath, which sounds like the perfect combination for winter.

Opti
Opti HalfDork
9/2/18 6:44 a.m.

I did it with a c5 for like 5 years, but I'm in Texas and if we get snow its only like once a year.

 

A good buddy is currently doing it in a c6. The cars are pretty durable. Good tires are expensive.

Rodan
Rodan HalfDork
9/2/18 12:52 p.m.

We only owned our C6 briefly, since it was a complete POS.  It was my wife's DD.  After the fact, I'm pretty sure it was a 'lemon', but all of the problems I had were documented on the 'Vette forums.

As a daily, as long as it was working, it wasn't bad.  It's comfortable to drive, though getting in/out repeatedly can be a chore if your joints are prematurely aged.  Decent storage space in the hatch area, although you lose a great deal of it if you pull the targa roof, which stores back there.  Lots of torque, pretty good visibility.

Ditch the run flats (if it still has them)... 'regular' tires will give a much better ride.  Tires are expensive.  Really, everything is expensive.  They are also not a lot of fun to work on due to the tight packaging.

The one thing to watch out for in regular driving is the aluminum 'skid plate'/radiator support.  It sits under the front bumper and acts as a lower x-member for the radiator.  These seem to break with the slightest scrape on a steep driveway or any other obstacle that gets even close to the air deflector.  The one on our car was broken when we got it, though I didn't discover it until I had to fix something else.  I replaced it, and checked it after scraping on one driveway about a week after installing it... broken again.  Like the first one, welds had no penetration, so the thing just shatters like glass... wasn't even bent.  At ~$200 a pop, not a cheap issue.  If you have a TIG, it's an easy fix.

One thing I would be sure of before buying is that all the electronics work.  We had a lot of electrical issues on ours.  Memory seats getting alzheimers, etc...  very annoying in a daily.

I always say no to extended/aftermarket warranties, but I would get one if we ever buy another 'Vette that was intended to be a daily.

Caithness
Caithness New Reader
9/3/18 4:17 a.m.

Fair warning, this is going to be long. I was the guy in school who had to cut down to the 2000 word limit, not pad it out.cool 

I bought a 2011 C6Z in early 2016 and have been daily driving it since. Started at 36k miles and just hit 56k. I mostly use it to commute but I've done a few road trips to the Appalachians, ran it down the 1/4 at Gainesville Raceway, took it on track at the FIRM and did a big road trip hitting Road Atlanta and VIR earlier this summer.

The car has been an excellent daily driver. The interior is nice enough that I have no complaints, though with my previous cars being a Mazda 2, a 90's Pathfinder, a first gen DSM, and a 90's Honda my standards are not very high. It won't wow anybody but it won't actively offend like the Cavalier-grade C5 interior. The AC blows cold, the seats are heated, and the stereo sounds decent but not great. The navigation is antiquated and effectively useless. On the interstate, at 6'3" I can move the seat back far enough and recline it to the point that it feels like I'm cruising down the highway in a La-Z-Boy. I did the return trip from VIR to Tampa in about 12 hours and 3 stints in complete comfort.

Despite the relatively stiff suspension and wide low-profile tires the car is smooth and easy to drive. The steering is a bit numb around town but I am comparing it to my S2000 and most cars will lose that comparison. The steering wakes up and communicates more when you push the car hard. The braking feel and stopping power is excellent. There is ample engine torque down low and excellent power up high. I usually cruise around town shifting at 2000 rpm. You can't wind it out and bang gears on surface streets - redline in first is over 60 MPH, second is over 90. When I do get a chance to open it up it always puts a big smile on my face. I love this dual nature, that the car can be sedate and comfortable around town and crazy fast when the opportunity arises.

The cost of running it daily is high. A set of Michelin PS4S tires is $1300 and they last me about 10k miles without track use. It takes 10.5qts of synthetic oil. I run Carbotech pads which cost $600 for a full set. Basic service parts like belts, hoses, filters, and gas cap have been dirt cheap. On the flip side there is a Corvette tax on bigger hard parts, especially Z06-specific parts. Gas mileage around town is terrible, 14mpg on a 20 mile round trip commute. On the plus side it can return 26mpg cruising at 80mph on the highway on long trips. 

Mechanically it has been great. When I got it I changed all the fluids, filters, and belts. I went to stainless lines and have been through several sets of pads and rotors mostly because of track use. It goes through XP8s pretty quickly on track but they last quite a while in pure street use. I usually do all my own work but this car came with a GM Major Guard warranty which I have used several times with mixed results.

The radiator cracked, which was covered under warranty with no hassle. After a trip to the drag strip I had a persistent clunking from the rear, dealer blew me off despite a relevant TSB I learned about regarding the axle nuts (they were completely loose when I checked). I've had to periodically grease the axle splines and retorque even after using new nuts and increased torque to keep this clunking at bay, which is annoying and apparently not uncommon. During my first HPDE the original brake bleeders leaked around the threads. I swapped in new OEM bleeders and used Speed Bleeder-brand thread sealant which fixed all but a tiny seep from one corner. Other than that I haven't had to do much.

The electrical system has been more of a pain. At one point I had a series of odd issues coinciding with low voltage on the dash, had the battery tested at Autozone (it passed). Took it to the dealer suspecting an alternator, only to have them replace the less-than-two-year-old battery under warranty and solve everything. It will drain the battery entirely if you let it sit for more than two weeks and they're famous for being battery-killers.

The car has been through several TPMS sensors, all covered under warranty. Annoyingly, when they fail the car goes into stability control super limp mode and locks the brakes if you so much as think about turning the steering wheel. I had this happen on the way to an autocross and had to unplug a connector under the steering wheel to bypass the system.

Currently there is a check engine light for a secondary o2 sensor and MAF-sensor which persisted through a MAF cleaning. The car drives fine but I'm planning on taking it in soon.

I think the AC control module and/or blend door stepper motor are shot. Air blows out all vents no matter what you set it to and once you turn the fan speed up the only way to turn it down is to shut the car off entirely. I brought this up the last time I was at the dealer and was told "they couldn't reproduce" despite it happening as soon as I picked up the car, so I'm going to insist on a personal demonstration with a mechanic next time.

I bought the car in excellent condition, seemingly garage kept by the first two owners. Used Corvettes sold by older gentlemen at half price after a few years of weekend cruising are one of our nation's greatest resources.

Since then the car's interior and exterior haven't held up to the abuse of daily driving and occasional track use as well as I would have hoped. The driver's side armrest cracked where I rest my elbow. The auto-dimming rear-view mirror has oxidized and costs almost $500(!) from the dealer. I plan on going aftermarket. Carrying tools, spares, and camping gear in the hatch on the Road Atlanta/VIR road trip caused the trunk floor fiberboard to collapse. The heat from running on track melted the door sill decals and somehow shrunk the carpet on the center console such that there is a noticeable gap where the carpet pulled away from the panel.

Two and a half years of daily driving and street parking in the brutal Florida sun have taken a toll on the paint despite regular waxing. There is fine cracking and oxidation which almost seems like it is coming from the fiberglass beneath the paint rather than the paint itself. The headlights went from crystal clear to oxidized yellow almost immediately. I spent hours sanding the ruined hard factory coating, and now the plastic underneath is yellowing despite regular polishing. The front bumper scrapes on everything - the air dam underneath is a consumable and you must exercise constant vigilance pulling into parking spaces not to rip the front lip off the bumper on parking barriers. The fiberglass rockers and fenders are easily scratched up by road debris. My rockers have a hairline crack from an ill-advised trip down a gravel road at a campground - these cars don't like leaving the pavement even a little bit. All in all I've owned twenty-year-old Japanese cars which held up better than this car has in just a few years. In the next few years I hope to get a place with a garage, at which point I will do a full cosmetic restoration.

Wrapping up- putting this all down on paper it sounds terrible but the ownership experience has mostly been hop in, drive, and enjoy. I love daily driving the thing and would hate to leave it in the garage waiting for special occasions. The car is easy to live with on the road and an animal on the track. The warranty has helped with peace of mind but it has been fairly easy to work on it myself. Not as easy as some of my Japanese cars but easier than my friends' BMWs. When the warranty is up I do plan on sending out the heads for rework to avoid any chance of the infamous LS7 valvetrain problem but the odds are that it would never experience a failure - it's largely an excuse to do a mild heads/cam upgrade. Other than that I plan on leaving it stock and driving the heck out of it for years to come. 

 

AngryCorvair
AngryCorvair MegaDork
9/3/18 7:13 a.m.

In reply to Caithness :

I read every word.  Thanks for the details!  If I pull the trigger, it will be a base model with manual trans and it will probably never see a track except for maybe Milan Dragway here in MI.  And it will be driven in MI winters.

i haven't driven one yet, and at 52 I might find that I don't like the ingress / egress, but I will certainly arrange to spend some time with one before writing the check.

poopshovel again
poopshovel again MegaDork
9/3/18 7:15 a.m.
AngryCorvair said:

In reply to Caithness :

I read every word.  Thanks for the details!  If I pull the trigger, it will be a base model with manual trans and it will probably never see a track except for maybe Milan Dragway here in MI.  And it will be driven in MI winters.

i haven't driven one yet, and at 52 I might find that I don't like the ingress / egress, but I will certainly arrange to spend some time with one before writing the check.

Did you ever drive a V1? 

Harvey
Harvey Dork
9/3/18 3:35 p.m.

Ingress / egress is fine assuming you have the power driver seat with memory. There is a middle button that you can use to move the seat back and forth so that when you get in and out you have it in the far back position.

I have a thread about mine in the build/project section.

https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/build-projects-and-project-cars/things-i-do-with-my-c6-z06-corvette/121126/page1/

A 401 CJ
A 401 CJ Dork
9/3/18 3:59 p.m.
I can’t say for sure about a c6Z, but on a C5Z there are a couple of rubber hoses intended to carry vacuum that rout in close proximity to the battery.  Out gassing from the battery causes these to become porous and the exact condition you describe results.  Replace or repair  these and get your ac blowing out of the correct vents again.
 
Caithness said

I think the AC control module and/or blend door stepper motor are shot. Air blows out all vents no matter what you set it to and once you turn the fan speed up the only way to turn it down is to shut the car off entirely. I brought this up the last time I was at the dealer and was told "they couldn't reproduce" despite it happening as soon as I picked up the car, so I'm going to insist on a personal demonstration with a mechanic next time.

 

 

 

 

maj75
maj75 HalfDork
9/3/18 4:10 p.m.

Bought a new ‘07 C6.  Had manual, Nav,  magnetic shocks and Z51.  Daily drove it in Miami.  Never had a problem, got about 27 mpg in stop and go driving.  Interior fit and finish is Chevrolet and a few annoying squeaks and rattles, but for the money, really can’t get better performance.

t44tq
t44tq
9/3/18 5:16 p.m.

I had an '05 that I bought in '08 and sold in '17. Only had one big issue with it, although every now and then, the climate control would get screwy and start flashing. Usually a power cycle would fix it, though. The big issue was that I had an issue with the EBCM- the brake controller- it went bad and would cause a "ABS/TC/DSC service required" error. I thought it was a wheel sensor, because the computer was telling me it was a wheel sensor. Replaced the sensors (they're integrated into the wheel bearing, so they're not exactly cheap), still had the issue. It took datalogging with a Tech 2 to figure out exactly what was going on, replaced the EBCM and the issue went away.

 

Tk8398
Tk8398 Reader
9/3/18 6:37 p.m.

One thing to consider with driving one a lot, if you are ever in an accident that involves hitting the back of a truck or SUV, its likely for it to go under the back of the taller vehicle far enough to demolish the fuel system on top of the engine and start a big fire.

Our Preferred Partners
u8tZ5zD2Qu2Uoi3WbWiZ3l5jREte34w31EZ3dcNvrINvfR97kvAz2tmm0ZDzDpnI