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2022 CORVETTE Z06 PROTOTYPES RUMORED TO BE BUILT AT BOWLING GREEN NEXT WEEK

The Z06 Was Also Spied Recently Again, Testing With A Familiar Ferrari 458 And Porsche 911 GT2 RS

C8 Corvette Z06 Prototype Spy Video Photo 2022 2023 2024

A recent forum post from MidEngineCorvetteForum is setting the Chevrolet Performance community abuzz with anticipation, as it alleges that prototypes of the 2022 C8 Corvette Z06 will be assembled at the GM Bowling Green Assembly plant in Kentucky for the first time next week.

These C8 Corvette Z06 prototypes, said to be codenamed “N50”, represent the next stage in the vehicle’s development timeline. Up to this point, “Alpha” Z06 prototypes and their components have been built by hand in GM’s preproduction operations (PPO) engineering facilities in Michigan. These “Beta” test mules will be used to validate the manufacturing process of the 2022 Corvette Z06, which is expected to be revealed as soon as July 2021.

Meanwhile, down in West Virginia, a fleet of C8 Corvette Z06 prototypes have been spotted by TFL on public roads, before pulling over to stop at a fast food restaurant. Part of the convoy was a pair of familiar supercars: a Ferrari 458 Italia, and the gray Porsche 911 GT2 RS that has been spotted lurking with the 2022 Corvette Z06 prototypes multiple times before.

This same fleet of IVER-stage vehicles were also spotted that same day in Ohio, where CorvetteBlogger was able to get a closer look at a more integrated center-exit exhaust system, which we here at MC&T originally reported would happen. The video below captures several 2022 Corvette Z06 prototypes starting up, idling, and briefly blipping their throttles. It’s hard to believe these exotic-sounding machines are coming from a car company that’s shaped much of its legacy around pushrod small block engines.

2022 Corvette Z06 Prototype Spy Video:

MC&T sources have revealed that GM has opted to benchmark the Ferrari 458 Italia – nearly $240,000 USD when new – against the C8 Corvette Z06 because of its high-revving, naturally aspirated V8. In doing so, engineers can evaluate traits such as its exhaust note and NVH relative to the LT6 flat-plane crank DOHC V8. This is the engine that will be found in behind the cabin of the upcoming Corvette variant. The LT6 is expected to be the most powerful naturally aspirated production V8 ever made, with over 600 horsepower on tap. Meanwhile, the Porsche 911 GT2 RS – nearly $300,000 USD when new, before options – is serving as a benchmark for ride and handling, as well as chassis tuning.

Some theories floating around the internet have suggested that the German supercar is being used as a benchmark for the upcoming C8 Corvette ZR1, but that doesn’t appear the case at the moment. It’s more likely that vehicles such as the McLaren 720S will be the benchmark vehicle when the time comes, or another turbocharged V8 supercar of similar output and capabilities. However, the C8 Corvette ZR1 is expected to have far-and-away levels of class-leading output, with up to 800 horsepower being rumored. This super Chevy is expected to arrive around 2023, likely as a 2024 model year.

2022 C8 Corvette Z06 Interior Photo
Image via Chevrolet

Written by Manoli Katakis

Muscle Cars & Trucks was founded by Manoli Katakis - an automotive media veteran that has been covering the latest car news since 2009. His journalism has uncovered dozens of major product changes, updates, plans, and cancellations long before automakers were ready to make things official.

Some highlights over the years of his reporting include the uncovering of the Zora trademark before anybody else reported on the coming of a mid-engine Corvette, as well as the dead-accurate reporting of the coming of the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2, two years before it hit the market, and even before the debut of the concept vehicle. This type of reporting has immediately continued here, with reports of the original seventh-generation Camaro plans being shelved, as well as what's in store for the Chevrolet Silverado.

Some of his work can be found on massive automotive media outlets, such as Motor1. He also has been a guest on the 910AM Radio Station with Detroit News auto critic Henry Payne, as well as the enthusiast-oriented Camaro Show podcast.

Over the years, Manoli has interviewed various automotive industry titans, leaders, and people that make things happen otherwise. These include figureheads such as GM CEO Mary Barra, GM President Mark Reuss, automotive aftermarket icon Ken Lingenfelter, Dodge firebrand Tim Kuniskis, along with various chief engineers of vehicles such as the Ford F-150 & Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro & Corvette, and many more.

At MC&T, Manoli is taking his journalism expertise, deeply planted sources, driving abilities, and automotive industry knowledge to new levels, covering more vehicles and brands than ever before. This is the place where you will continue to read groundbreaking stories about American performance vehicles, pickup trucks, and sport utility vehicles. Here is where you’ll also read insights and quotes from various automotive subject matter experts on the latest relevant products, as well as some of the latest official news from their manufacturers.

Fun facts: he also once beat Corvette Racing driver Tommy Milner in an autocross with a Chevrolet Bolt EV. The biggest vehicle he’s ever driven is a John Deere mining truck. Besides a go-kart, the smallest vehicle he’s driven has been a Hyundai i10. He’s also spent time in the cockpit of various American performance vehicle icons, including the fifth-generation Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, Dodge Challenger Demon, and Ford Mustang GT350R. He has reviewed dozens of trucks, SUVs, and performance vehicles over the years.

One of his favorite new vehicles on the market today happens to be the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Bison. He is also a card carrying member of the Sports Car Club of America, and regularly participates in Detroit Region autocross events.

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