Chevrolet's racing success helps breed the fastest, most powerfulproduction Corvette ever built
The new Z06 achieves 500 horsepower in an approximately 3130-pound(1419.7 kg) package and is expected to deliver 0-60 performance of lessthan 4 seconds, eclipse the quarter-mile in less than 12 seconds anddeliver a top speed of more than 190 mph on a race track.
The links between racing and the production Z06 are both direct andindirect, as the vehicle was developed in conjunction with theforthcoming C6-R racecar, but they boil down to the application oflessons that could only have been learned after countless laps ofendurance racing - everything from suspension geometry to aerodynamics.What the engineers developed was a totally unique vehicle that has itsown powertrain, body structure and chassis system which are distinctfrom other Corvette models.
Previous Z06 models, from the original 1963 model to the 2001-04editions, incorporated suspension and/or engine upgrades thatcomplemented existing Corvette systems. Not surprisingly, the specs forthe '06 read like the blueprint of a champion. They include:
* LS7 7.0-liter/427-cubic-inch Gen IV V-8 with lightweight reciprocatingcomponents
* 500 horsepower (373 kw) at 6200 rpm
* 475 lb.-ft. of torque (657 Nm) at 4800 rpm
* Titanium connecting rods and intake valves
* Aluminum body structure with one-piece hydroformed perimeter railsframe and magnesium front cradle
* Carbon-fiber composite front fenders and front wheelhouses
* Huge 14-inch (355-mm) cross-drilled front disc brakes with six-pistoncalipers and 13.4-inch (340-mm) cross-drilled rear rotors withfour-piston calipers
* 18 x 9.5-inch front wheels with 275/35ZR18 tires and 19 x 12-inch rearwheels with 325/30ZR19 tires
* Curb weight of 3130 pounds / 1419.7 kg (estimated)
* Vehicle developed simultaneously with C6-R racecar.
The all-new LS7 of the '06 Z06 reintroduces the 427-cubic-inch engine tothe Corvette lineup. Unlike the previous 427 engine, which was abig-block design, the new 7.0-liter LS7 is a small-block V-8 - thelargest-displacement small-block ever produced by GM and a tribute toits 50 years as a performance icon.
With 500 horsepower and 475 lb.-ft. of torque, it also is the mostpowerful passenger car engine ever produced by Chevrolet and GM. The LS7is easily identified under the hood by red engine covers with blacklettering.
The LS7 shares the same basic Gen IV V-8 architecture as the Corvette's6.0-liter LS2, but the LS7 uses a different cylinder block casting withpressed-in steel cylinder liners to accommodate the engine's wide,104.8-mm-wide cylinder bores; the LS2 has 101.6-mm bores. And whencompared to the LS2, the LS7 also has a different front cover, oil pan,exhaust manifolds and cylinder heads.
For more on the newest Z06 and the LS7 427 small block see theApril 2005 issue of Corvette Fever on sale February 15th