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LA 2017: Open-top Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 makes global reveal


Chevrolet debuts their first modern-era Corvette ZR1 convertible since 1970

Chevrolet has dropped the top on its most-powerful Corvette ZR1 with the global reveal of the 2019 ZR1 convertible. Boasting of supercar performance, the new model is the first modern-era drop-top ZR1 since the original 1970 ZR1 was launched.

“The new Corvette ZR1 convertible is a supercar in all respects,” said Mark Reuss, executive vice president, Global Product Development, Purchasing and Supply Chain.


Built on the same rigid aluminum chassis as the ZR1 coupe, the convertible only needed minor structural changes for the folding top hardware and repositioned seat belt mounts; which add only 27 kg to the curb weight of the car. The power top can be operated at speeds up to 48 km/h.

Chevrolet says the ZR1 convertible "emphasizes Corvette’s iconic proportions and functional sculpture, highlighting the seamless transition between the exterior and interior."

“The ZR1 convertible is a no-compromise supercar,” said Corvette Executive Chief Engineer Tadge Juechter. “Thanks to the strong structure, the suspension tuning between coupe and convertible models is identical, meaning the ZR1 convertible offers the same benchmark performance, including a top speed of over 300 km/h.” 


Under the hood is a 6.2-liter LT5 supercharged engine rated at 765 PS and 969 Nm which can mated to either a seven-speed manual gearbox or an eight-speed automatic with paddle shifters. The LT5 features dual fuel-injection and a more efficient 2.65-liter intercooled supercharger compared to the Z06’s LT4. Four new fluid coolers have been added to the ZR1 giving it a total of 13 to keep its performance consistent. The Corvette ZR1 Convertible tops out at 341 km/h as tested on the Papenburg proving ground in Germany.

Engineers have developed a new exhaust system to convert all that performance into distinct exhaust notes. The bi-modal exhaust system allows four modes: Stealth, Tour, Sport and Track. From stealthily warming up your car on an early morning to virtually unrestricted exhaust flow for maximum performance on 'Track' mode.

An optional ZTK Performance Package gives the car up to 950 pounds of downforce consisting of a new front-splitter with carbon-fiber end caps, an adjustable 'High Wing,' Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires, additional chassis upgrades and Magnetic Ride Control tuning. The performance package helps generate better lap times at the expense of top speed.

The 2019 Corvette ZR1 coupe and convertible will be on display to the public December 1-10 at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

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