Latest seems the greatest of Corvette Z06
The Corvette Z06, for those unaware, is a high performance trim variant of the Chevrolet Corvette sports car, usually involving a larger plant under the hood and other performance upgrades. The current Z06, which is just beginning to hit dealerships, appears to be the performance bargain of all time. The cars are starting to hit dealerships now, so if you got a spare $80,000…
The 2015 Corvette Z06 comes stock with a supercharged 6.2-liter (that’s a 350, folks) V-8 that Chevy reports is good for 650 horsepower and 650 pounds-feet of torque. Coupled to the behemoth in the engine bay is a seven-speed manual or eight-speed automatic (with paddle shifters, naturally) sending the twist to the rear wheels. Reportedly, the manual version will hit 60 mph from ) in 3.25 seconds; the automatic does the feat in 2.9.
The price tag starts just below $80,000, which makes it among the bargains of all time for serious performance; Ferrari-esque firepower for entry-level 911 money.
Evolution of the breed
The original Corvette Z06 was a race trim variant of the C2 Corvette (Corvette generations are designated with a C; the first was C1, the fifth C5…you get it) only offered in 1963. It didn’t amount to much; the engine was stock, but the suspension and brakes were upgraded to race-spec and a larger fuel tank was added for racing.
The Z06 trim level was revived for the C5 generation onward. Suspension, braking and handling refinements were made standard, along with more powerful engines. In the C5 and C6 generations, the Z06 was bridge between the base ‘Vette and the ZR1, the highest performance variant.
The C6 Z06 featured a beastly naturally-aspirated 7.0-liter (427) V-8, producing 505 horsepower and capable of the 0 to 60 sprint in just under four seconds. The sound it makes is deafening and glorious to behold. Aside from that,it also had a more aerodynamic body, upgraded suspension, braking and other refinements, and since base prices were in the $70,000, few other cars offered the same performance for the money.
Meet the new boss
The C7 Corvette Z06 is one of the bargains of the century. While it costs more than the Shelby mustang, it has a much more sophisticated suspension including GM’s magnetic ride system and a limited slip differential. It has less horsepower than the SRT Hellcat cars, but since the Hellcats are made in such a limited run, it will probably be easier to find and therefore buy.
One wonders what the ZR1 is going to be like.