[AUDIO] How Does the Sound of the Mid-Engine Corvette C8.R Compare with the C7.R V8?



Photo Credit: Brian Willams / SpiedBilde

So yesterday’s spy photos of the Mid-Engine Corvette C8.R that was being tested by the Corvette Racing team at Road America caused quite a stir. The photos were shared by SportsCar365.com, who also posted a sound file of the same car later in the afternoon.

I know a lot of the Corvette faithful aren’t particularly happy this morning as it does feel like the end of an era for the Corvette Racing team as we know it. And I am torn as well because much of the identity of the Corvette C7.Rs (and those previous generations that paved the way) is the sound of that big V8 that is so distinctive from any other competitors in racing today.

But I also get that we can’t continue to race with a dated platform where our only hope for being competitive is relying on Balance of Performance changes to make it all fair. So let’s drop the emotions for a moment and take a closer listen to what is probably likey the future of Corvette Racing’s new powerplant.

Most pundits have been saying that this is indeed the sound of a turbo-powered car and after listening to various sound clips, I would have to agree. The prevailing wisdom of those following the development of the street versions of the Mid Engine Corvettes has been they will start with the 6.2 liter LT1 for the base car and then future models would have a turbo 5.5 liter DOHC V8 that makes about 600-hp and another 5.5 liter turbo DOHC V8 that makes around 800-hp.

As the Corvette Racing team has years of development and testing in their own 5.5 liter naturally-aspirated V8, it would seemed like a given that the engine would follow. But perhaps the team is looking to skip-ahead to a turbo-powered V8. Such a move would then give Chevrolet the opportunity to have a race-proven version of a turbo DOHC V8 that would follow the “Track to Street” engineering approach which is a major reason for racing the Corvettes anyway.

I mentioned that this morning to a Corvette Racing enthusiast and said that if that’s the case, then the team would most likely need a waiver to run a “non-production” DOHC V8 its first year. His response? If Ford complains, they can go pound sand! True that!!

If a turbo DOHC V8 is what the team wants to run, then it doesn’t make much sense to test the car with their current 5.5 liter V8. So like I said, it does appear we are coming to the end of an era and the beginning of a new one.

After listening to the sound clip from SportsCar365.com, I decided to make some additional audio files for comparison and SoundCloud makes it real easy for comparing the differences. Below is the C8.R, the C7.R, the Ford GT Ecoboost V6 and the street Mid-Engine Corvette prototype which was captured on the track a couple months back doing quick take offs and acceleration testing.

(After listening to each clip, SoundCloud throws up a box that says “hear more on soundcloud”. Click the X in the top right corner to re-listen to the sound file).

Corvette C8.R

Corvette C7.R

Ford GT Twin-Turbo V6 Ecoboost

Prototype Mid Engine Corvette testing on the track

I know which one is my favorite, but then we don’t always get what we want. What’s your take on the sound of the mid-engine Corvette C8.R versus these other exhaust-note clips? Let us know in the comments below or head on over to the Mid-Engine Corvette Forum and discuss with like-minded Corvette enthusiasts.

[SPIED] The Mid-Engine Corvette C8.R Spotted Track Testing at Road America
[VIDEO] The Mid-Engine C8 Corvette Performing Quick Take-Offs on the Track
Corvette Racing at Road America: Another Double Podium for Corvette C7.Rs



  1. If the days of the 5.5 liter V8 are gone for the racing program, at least the C8.R sounds way better than the Ford GT (that sounds like a four-banger).

  2. You can’t run a large displacement TT engine. Racing engine and production are going to be smaller. These C8R engine would have too be a TT V8 DOHC high revving (as in these sound clip) 3.8-liter, 3.9-liter (or something along those lines), to stay close too these production size. Because a 4.2-litre TT DOHC V8 is to big and a 5.5-liter TT DOHC V8 is to big.

  3. Having attended several IMSA races it is very clear when a C7R is approaching…its sound is VERY distinctive! The C8R ME does sound better than the Ford GT but its soo much like most of the other cars. If the sample of a production mid-engine Vette is the actual sound, I am VERY disappointed as it has zero character. Not exactly certain why a ME has to be so different from a FE car(perhaps the length of exhaust piping) but the Corvette gurus need to be sensitive to that. Given that if the ME makes regular production the price will be way out of most of our bank accounts each so the FE Vette will be with us for some time to come! Personally, my C6ZO6 with the exhaust muffler valves fully open is music to my ears!

  4. To me, the C8.R sounds like a flat crank V8, whereas Corvette traditionally uses cross crank, that sounds better IMHO.

    That being said, I don’t think that we can speculate how will sound the middle-engine corvette from the C8.R. The differences are too big between a road car and a race car.

  5. You are only the second person I here say flat plane crank. You may be right. How crazy and awesome would that be. Mid engine and flat plane. Watch out world.

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