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Chevrolet Corvette Z06 2023: supercar-slayer teased before official reveal

 
Zak Adkins
Journalist

The mid-engined Corvette Z06 has the Porsche 911 GT3 in its sights, mixing supercar performance with aggressive looks.


The C8 Chevrolet Corvette hasn’t even launched in Australia and yet its American maker is already primed Stateside to launch the baddest version of the mid-engined model: the Z06. 

While the official reveal of the Z06 isn’t scheduled until October 26th, Chevrolet has released a single image onto social media of the Z06 without camouflage, saying “who needs spy photos when you’ve got the real thing?”

The biggest news is that the current 6.2-litre LT2 naturally aspirated V8 will be ditched in favour of a 5.5-litre flat-plane crank V8 which is likely to rev to around 9000rpm. 

2023 Chevrolet Corvette Z06
The Corvette Z06 image teased by Chevrolet.

It is expected that the new engine will make around 460kW of power and 651Nm of torque. That’s almost 100kW more than the Australian spec car we will first see down under. 

Flat-plane crank V8 engines are usually found in supercars built in Maranello and occasionally find their way into other cars such as the Shelby GT350. Unlike a traditional V8, which has an off-beat, thumping characteristic, a flat-plane crank fires cylinders evenly and to higher revolutions.

The Z06 will likely use an iteration of the eight-speed dual-clutch transmission already used in the ‘regular’ Corvette. 

2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray
Even the standard Corvette Stingray looks mean, so just imagine what the Z06 will look like.

Along with an update to the drivetrain, the Z06 looks like it will receive additional aero modifications, wider bodywork and uprated cooling. 

The exhaust pipes have been relocated to now be central to the rear of the car and is very reminiscent of the C7 Corvette ‘four pipe’ design. 

The quick shifting gearbox helps the standard Corvette reach 100km/h in just 2.9 seconds, so the Z06 is likely to take these figures to a whole new level. 

While we wait… the Australian Corvette

It is unlikely that we will see the Z06 Corvette down under before 2023, but we will have the ‘standard’ car very soon thanks to Australian distributor GMSV.

The entry level 2LT will start at $144,990 before on-road costs and will bump up to $159,990 for the convertible.

2020 Chevrolet Corvette engine
The 6.2-litre LT2 V8 found in the Corvette will be replaced by a 5.5-litre engine for the Z06.

Included in the base spec will be the Z51 Performance Pack which includes a dual-mode exhaust, Brembo brakes, magnetic dampers and an electric limited-slip differential. 

The 3LT edition will offer a nicer interior over the 2LT and will start at a higher price of $160,500. 

Outputs for the Corvette will be 369kW of power and 631Nm of torque, all of which is sent to the rear wheels only. 

The C8 Corvette is unique in that it offers supercar performance for a fraction of the cost of its European rivals. 

2023 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 track
A camouflaged Z06 sits next to its track cousin.

To compare, a Ferrari 488 Spider starts at $526,888 before on roads and can sprint to 100km/h in three seconds. 

The Corvette can match that 0-100km/h figure but only costs a fifth of the price.

There’s only one problem: it seems other people have realised that the Corvette holds incredible value.

All 228 vehicles of the original allocation have sold out in Australia. The first Corvettes should land on our shores by December 2021. 

As for the Z06, the name has been trademarked by GMSV in Australia, so it’s not really a question of if, but when?