It's been two years since Chevrolet revealed the all-new Corvette C8. Now featuring a mid-engine layout, the eight-generation Corvette now follows the same design philosophy as the Ford GT, Honda NSX, and the Ferrari F8 Tributo.
When it first came out, however, the C8 was only available with a 6.2-liter naturally-aspirated V8 called the LT2. It makes an impressive 496 PS with 637 Nm of torque and is connected to an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission. All well and good, but its closest rivals make upwards of 600 PS and above.
Luckily, Chevrolet has been busy for the past couple of years making an even more powerful version of the all-new Corvette. This is the 2023 Corvette Z06, and it gets a smaller but more powerful engine.
Unlike the previous-generation Z06 which comes with a supercharged V8, Chevrolet decided to go with the naturally-aspirated approach. Despite having a smaller displacement than the LT2, the new 5.5-liter LT6 makes a whopping 670 PS and 623 Nm of torque. It also has a redline of 8,600 rpm which is just 200 rpm above peak power. So how was Chevrolet able to make a rev-happy engine?
The all-aluminum V8 has a flat-plane crankshaft that allows the engine to rev to over 8,500 rpm. It also has a low-inertia rotating assembly, and a shorter stroke compared to the larger 6.2-liter LT2 powerplant. From a standstill, Chevrolet claims the Z06 can sprint from 0 – 97 km/h in just 2.6 seconds. Like the standard C8, this one is also mated to an eight-speed dual-clutch gearbox.
Aside from having a souped-up engine, Chevrolet was also busy tweaking its suspension and chassis. It now has wider fenders which help accommodate the bigger wheels and tires. The rear rolls on 345/25 tires wrapped in 21-inch alloys, while the front set gets 275/30 tires with 20-inch alloy wheels. To ensure there's always grip, the Z06 comes with Michelin Pilot Sport 4S ZP tires as standard. The suspension, meanwhile, gets new Z06-specific calibration.
Since the Z06 is faster than a typical C8, Chevrolet upgraded the front brakes to six-piston Brembo calipers that clamp down on 14.6-inch rotors. The rear brakes are slightly larger as well and measure 15-inches in diameter. But for those that really want the ultimate in braking performance, the Z06 can be specified with the optional carbon-ceramic disc brakes which bump up the rotors to 15.7-inches in the front, and 15.4-inches in the back.
But why stop there? Chevrolet is also offering the Z07 Performance Package which further enhances the Z06's capabilities. It gets a carbon fiber aero package with a large front splitter, front-corner dive panels, a rear wing, Magneride Ride Control, Michelin Sport Cup 2 R ZP tires specifically developed for the Z06, carbon fiber alloy wheels that deliver an 18.6 kg weight reduction, and the aforementioned carbon-ceramic brake upgrade.
With its level of performance and enhancements, the new Corvette Z06 is putting everyone on notice, including its rivals in Maranello and elsewhere in the world. The only question now is, will The Covenant Car Company Inc. (TCCCI) be able to bring the Z06 to the Philippines? Since they plan on bringing the C8 to the country soon, they might as well bring the Z06 as well, right?