Who needs a ZR1 when you’ve already got a Z06 capable of providing even better supercar performance?
Autoblog reports this week that its sources at Chevrolet are saying that a ZR1 version of the C7 is not likely.
That makes economic sense really.
After all, the C4 ZR-1 singlehandedly made Corvette the “King of the Hill” for performance cars during its limited run from 1990 to 1995. But the high price tag (and the ever-increasing performance of the base car) kept sales down to a total of just 6,939 units.
It really wouldn’t be unprecedented for Chevy to drop the ZR1 (or ZR-1, depending on the generation) for now. After all, there was no C5 version, with the Z06 carrying the ultra-performance burden for the Corvette faithful.
There might not have been a C6 ZR1, either, had bad economic times not forced Chevy into extending the run for the sixth generation Corvette, giving Chief Engineer Tadge Juechter and crew extra time to come up with new toys like the ZR1 and the Grand Sport.
Now, with the just-announced C7 Z06 actually beating the performance of the C6 ZR1 with its 625 horsepower (at least) and 635 pound-feet of torque, even though it’s still in development, Chevy likely believes it can’t justify the additional costs to engineer, test, and certify a new ZR1 – especially since it historically has never sold that many in the first place and probably wouldn’t increase performance that much.
The good news is that the new Z06 will be here soon – and at a price palatable to those who can afford the C6 ZR1. Just as he told folks that if they could afford a C6, they could afford a C7, Juechter is now saying that if someone could afford a C6 ZR1, they can afford a C7 Z06.
Autoblog believes Chevy might wait for what it calls the “next great technological leap” before investing in another ZR1.