GM trademarks "Zora" name once again


General Motors has filed yet again to trademark the "Zora" name, which has fueled rumors the mid-engine C8 Corvette will wear the nameplate.

The Drive discovered the trademark filing with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, which the automaker filed on Dec. 12. It's not the first time GM has filed to trademark the name; it first moved to secure the Zora name in 2014 with a USPTO filing. Since then, the automaker has also filed to register the name in multiple countries around the globe.

2020 Chevrolet Corvette (C8) spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

2020 Chevrolet Corvette (C8) spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

However, GM hasn't yet secured the Zora name for use in the U.S. The reason? The automaker must provide a Statement of Use document to the USPTO to describe how GM plans to use the name. GM probably filed for an extension on the document back in 2014 before refiling the application in December. With the trademark resurfacing, it's likely GM will soon present a Statement of Use document as it prepares to debut the C8 Corvette.

Zora comes from the first name of long-time engineer, Zora Arkus-Duntov, who enthusiasts consider the father of the Corvette. Crucially, Duntov led the charge to grace the first-generation Corvette with a V-8 engine, which helped catapult the sports car to success in the 1950s and beyond. Duntov also fought hard during his time as lead Corvette engineer to move the car to a mid-engine layout, a goal he never realized during his tenure or lifetime. He passed away in 1996.

2020 Chevrolet Corvette (C8) spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

2020 Chevrolet Corvette (C8) spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

Today, Chevrolet is on the cusp of revealing the most revolutionary Corvette in decades with Duntov's long-desired mid-engine layout. An upgraded LT1 V-8 engine is rumored to serve as the base powertrain, while a couple of DOHC flat-plane crank V-8 engines may show up afterward. Reports have also indicated an all-wheel-drive Corvette with a hybrid powertrain is in the cards.

The mid-engine Corvette was rumored to debut at the upcoming Detroit auto show, but it is now expected this summer, perhaps as soon as May. Chevrolet has reportedly worked hard to ensure it remains an affordable sports car for the masses, with pricing just a bit higher than the current Corvette.

 
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