I have just been reading the respected US Road & Track magazine which has some snippets of information on the new C7 Chevrolet Corvette V8 cars. The suggestion is that it will, along with being moderately more compact, become slicker and lighter. This also includes a smaller but just as powerful V8. Some of the changes are driven by government legislation and some by consumer desires and demands.
There had been plans for a mid engine V8 arrangement but the Global Financial crisis has meant that plan is on hold (temporarily). For the V8 engine we will most likely see a reduction in cubic capacity to 5.5-liters and very possibly direct injection, along with an increase in the compression. Don't expect such technologies as over head camshafts.
So a C7 Chevy Corvette with a 5.5-liter V-8 with outputs the same as the current LS3 (6.2-liter) is highly likely. Along with the V8 engine improvements it is expected that the Chevy Corvette's performance will be further enhanced with weight reducing composites, magnesium and aluminum. There are suggestions of a vehicle weight of around 3000 lbs.
The suggestion is that the 2011 Z06 Carbon Edition is a good indication of what is achievable with the Corvette. Also the promise of a more compact Corvette means improved aerodynamics, aiding fuel economy, performance and top speed.
The other juicy suggestion is that the next generation of the Chevy Corvette will be supercharged (like the current ZR1). So in spite of the financial gloom and doom the American small-block has weathered the storm and looks to be here for a while yet. And in fact it appears to be a better product because of the storm.