Corvette over-the-air update could solve hoods flying open

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Chevrolet is examining reports of the 2020 Corvette’s hood flying open while the car is moving. The company stressed the issue isn’t due to a design- or a manufacturing-related defect, and it’s looking at leveraging some of the technology packed into the car to solve it.

“After isolated reports of 2020 Chevrolet Corvette hoods being inadvertently left open while being driven, the engineering team is investigating the potential issue and will be working to prevent them moving forward. We have not been able to identify any mechanical issue related to this situation,” a spokesperson told Autoblog.

In other words, hoods are flying open at high speeds because owners are not closing them properly, according to the company. It’s a user error, not a latch-related problem that warrants a recall, yet Chevrolet added it will take steps to fix it. This is where the Corvette’s over-the-air software updating system will save it a tremendous amount of time and money.

“We’re looking at ways we can improve warnings of the hood being open by increasing the volume of warning chimes, and changing the messaging that appears in the digital instrument cluster. Vehicles already in the field would receive these changes through over-the-air updates,” the spokesperson clarified.

It stopped short of revealing when it will decide whether to send out an update. Similarly, because this would be the car’s first major over-the-air update, we don’t know how it will notify owners yet.

Posting on enthusiast forum MidEngineCorvette, several owners complained their hood (or, in 2020-speak, frunk hatch) unexpectedly flew open while driving and obscured their vision. One even posted a video of the hood opening. Some added the hood, its hinges, or both, were damaged during the incident. Six owners filed a hood-related complaint with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) between April 17 and July 13, 2020. 

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Saurabh Shukla

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