Chevy Plays With the Corvette ZR1 at the Nurburgring

Earlier today an experimental Corvette ZR1 prototype was spotted skulking around at the Nürburgring.

Just when Team Camaro thought they could start making a rightful claim to the performance car crown at Chevrolet, the Corvette crew come back at them with this Blue Devil.  The ZR1 ditches its leather face mask again, offering an even better look at the undisguised car first captured last month at Laguna Seca

No one’s quite sure what motor Chevy will stuff in the ZR1, but obviously it’s large. The power dome and heat extractor have grown significantly compared to the Z06; so unless engineers doubled the size of the LT4’s supercharger, the extra clearance likely points to the rumored resurrection of the DOHC LT5. With twin turbos it’s thought the new V8 could punch out 750 hp. 

Up front, the fascia has been stretched and ripped open in order feed the monster as much oxygen as possible; accompanied by different fender vents and a wider front track. While the massive front splitter does have significantly sized endplates, it doesn’t appear to be movable, despite GM’s work on a state of the art active aero system. The mule’s front tries also look wider than the Z06’s 285-sections, a 12.5-inch front tire wouldn’t be inappropriate considering the application. 

The rear pedestal wing looks nearly identical to the one tacked to the back of the Camaro ZL1 1LE. Close up shots reveal manually adjustable hinges where the wing meets the supports, but this could just be engineers fine tuning the prototype’s rear downforce. Given that ZR1 mules have been spotted in the past with little wings, it’s probable this setup will be offered as an optional track package.

It’s unlikely Team Corvette got much hard running today as the temperature in Nürburg, Germany hovered around 32F, including gusting winds and mixed flurries.

Look for the ZR1 to arrive within the next 12 months as the C7’s ultimate evolution, and even if the C8 kills the Corvette as we know it, the ZR1 doesn’t sound like a bad way to go…

Comments