The New Corvette C8 Z06 Review

The New Corvette C8 Z06 Review

The recipe changed, however, the product is still an unhinged track machine.

The Chevrolet Corvette has been one of the most-selling sports cars of American market, and for good reason. For its budget, the eight generations of Corvettes all offer you the thrill of your life without hurting your wallet as much as an European equivalent. Corvette will celebrate its 70th anniversary next year, and the latest generation, named C8, was unveiled a couple of years ago. Despite the initial controversy over the radical change with the new mid-engine arrangement, the C8 proved that it’s just as fast and raw as the previous generations, and now, the latest contender of Chevrolet comes with the long-awaited Z06 performance model that’d tear your face apart. In this article, we will take a look on the fresh performance model of the mid-engined Corvette.

The new Z06 without the ”Z07 Performance Pack”.

The Z06 performance version of the C8 generation Corvette was unveiled almost a year ago, on October 26, 2021, in 2022 Chicago Auto Show, and its production started a couple of months ago with its 2023 model year. The Z06 aims to show the naysayers that the Corvette hasn’t lost its raw nature despite the new engine arrangement. To prove their point, Chevrolet fitted the Z06 with much more aggressive bodywork that mirrors the Z06 models of the previous generations. Three trims are planned; 1LZ, 2LZ, and 3LZ, adding several comfort and feature upgrades, and the Z07 Performance pack, which transforms the Z06 from a fast supercar to a jet fighter, is an optional extra for the standard Z06 owners. Even though the Z07 pack is a monsterous addition on its own, the standard Z06 packs just as much punch. The front and rear splitter of the base model Z06, combined with the rear spoiler, produce 166 kg (365 lb) of downforce at 300 km/h (186 mph). For the Corvette owners who want to maximize their performance in a race track though, the Z07 Performance pack is a must have, as the extensive aero additions like the large front splitter, corner canards, the big mounted rear wing and the large diffuser allows the Z06 to have 1.22g lateral acceleration on a skidpad, and reward its driver with the best Corvette performance ever so far. The Z06 weighs 1561 kg (3441 lbs).

Breaking the fourth wall here, but since we are nothing more than a small community devoted to cars at the moment, we don’t have the opportunity to ask Chevrolet for a drive through the winding roads. We can, however, still judge its performance by the numbers, so let’s crunch them. Chevrolet fitted the new Z06 with a naturally-aspirated 5.5L V8 which produces 670 HP at 8,400 rpm and 624 nm of torque at 6,300 rpm. These performance figures easily surpass the Mercedes-Benz SLS Black Series and makes the new C8 Z06 the most powerful naturally-aspirated car ever built. One of the many impressive feats of this new engine, codenamed LT6, is that it redlines at 8,600 rpm and a modified version of this engine has been used in the C8.R racing car since 2019. That’s quite a rap sheet, and to complete the Z06 recipe, an 8-speed dual-clutch transmission from the base Stingray model is mated to the engine, however, its tweaked 5.56:1 final drive ratio drastically improves its acceleration. According to Chevrolet, this tweak allows the Z06 to accelerate from 0 to 60 in just 2.6 seconds. That’s a bold claim and would crush the competition if it’s confirmed. We’d still appreciate a good old 6-speed manual, though. The brand also claims a 10.6 second 1/4 mile time, which is also pretty impressive for a production car. The top speed of the Z06 is 313 km/h (195 mph).

The convertible version of the Z06 is also out for open-top enthusiasts.

Chevrolet does not forget people who simply want to have all the power of a performance Corvette but also put that power on the road for a cruise through the winding roads, so they also made a retractable hardtop convertible version of the new Z06. It shares everything with the coupe Z06 and offers nearly the same performance with minimal weight gain. So, what’s the price for this latest monster of a Corvette? Well, the three trims of the Z06 cost $106,395, $115,595 and $120,245 respectively. The convertible versions are a little more pricey, each trim costing $113,895, $122,595 and $127,545. The Z07 Performance package costs $8,995, but this does not include the extra bits for the pack. So, for a track-focused C8, you should pay around $130,000 both for 3LZ and the Z07 pack. The price is surprisingly well considering that this is the new most powerful naturally-aspirated car ever made. Would you buy one? Or would you go for the older generations? Let us know.