It was a great week for those of us who are constantly wondering what is next for America’s Sports Car. First, we got to hear what we are expecting to be the C8 Corvette Z06 for the first time, all but confirming our suspicions of the newest road car using a version of the C8.R’s flat-plane-crank V8. Just two days later, the same car was spotted again, and this time it had a friend. Chevrolet engineers were benchmarking their next mid-engine marvel against the most potent 911 in history, the 991.2 generation GT2 RS.
Up to this point, there have been two schools of thought about what form the Z06’s engine would take. One group is hoping for the Z’s return to its lightweight, naturally aspirated roots with a high revving V8 as similar to the C8.R’s as Chevrolet can give them. The other faction is hungry for power. They are pulling for twin turbos to be bolted to the FPC V8. This split isn’t just between Corvette enthusiasts either, this one goes all the way to the top and is being fueled by Car and Driver who is predicting that the Z06 engine will be free breathing while MotorTrend is on team turbo. Let’s take a look at the thought processes behind each Z theory:
The NA Purists:
This group is all about the “feel” of a car. Their ideal benchmark vehicle is the last pre-turbo mid-engine V8 Ferrari, the 458.
Pros of Natural Aspiration: Higher revving, better sound, instant throttle response, would be unique in the 2021+ vehicle market, more desirable in the long term because there will always be a faster/more powerful car, the NA V8’s time seems to be limited.
Cons of Natural Aspiration: Less power and torque, higher revs make some people concerned about engine longevity.
Reasons to believe this is the way the team behind the Z06 will go: The Ferrari 458 was mentioned at the C8 reveal as the “best sports car in history,” the sound clip of a Z drive-by didn’t sound turbocharged, a 600ish HP car slots above the Stingray and leaves room for a twin-turbo ZR1 a lot better than a boosted 750+ HP Z would, a twin-turbo car is almost certainly in the pipeline and an NA Z06 adds differentiation to the Corvette portfolio that has been missing since 2013, 600 HP is plenty for the new layout based on how fast the Stingray is with “just” 495 ponies.
Twin Snails Please:
Those who subscribe to MT’s Z06 forecasts just want the fastest possible car. The McLaren 720S is their dream blueprint for the next version of the ‘Vette.
Pros of Twin Turbos: POWER!!!
Cons of Twin Turbos: Even the best modern turbos still lag, a TT V8 would make the Z06 “just another” mid-engine sports car these days, added weight.
Reasons to believe Tadge and Co. will turn to turbos for the Z06: Running with a GT2 RS instead of a GT3 or GT3 RS is pretty telling about the kind of power they are expecting, the new Z06 making less power than the old one doesn’t seem right, the most believable leaked information showed a twin-turbo powerplant.
So, what side of the fence do you fall on? I don’t want to speak for my compatriots here at CorvetteBlogger but I am strongly in favor of making the Z06 light and naturally aspirated again. I have covered the topic in the past but will still be excited if Chevrolet decides on a monster twin-turbo Z06. In that case, maybe they will throw a NA version of the Flat-Plane V8 into a Grand Sport? Vote and let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
[SPIED] Prototype C8 Corvette Z06 Testing with a Porsche 911 GT2 RS
[SPIED] Video Captures the Sound of a Flat-Plane Crank V8 in this C8 Corvette Z06 Prototype
CorvettesC8 CorvetteNewsRumors & Innuendo [RUMOR] C8 Corvette Z06 Will Have a Flat-Plane Crank Twin Turbo V8