A C8 Corvette Z06 squadron is currently testing in the Colorado mountains, and several keen observers have spotted them on public roads. Most recently, one of them was spotted with a peculiar setup featuring a pronounced bulge on the frunk of the upcoming supercar, as well as two pronounced intake vents – one on each side. Other Z06 prototypes we’ve seen thus far are absent of these features, but we have learned what’s going on here, and we’re going to share the details with you.
The audio is dubbed over with music, giving us zero indication as to what’s powering this unique supercar prototype. But even without it, we can confidently state that what remains behind the passenger cabin, affixed just fore of the rear axles is the LT6 5.5L DOHC flat-plane crank V8 engine that’s in other C8 Corvette Z06 prototypes. To aid with its validation, the Corvette Racing team is also running a 5.5L flat-plane DOHC V8 engine based on the LT6. Its output is expected to float around 600 hp, while its redline is expected to encroach on 9,000 RPM. It’s going to be a screamer.
So, what’s with the pronounced vents crudely affixed to the exterior camouflage and cladding? We’re told by those familiar with the matter that they’re meant to assist with airflow and cooling. Of which, the vent in the front may point to an extra heat exchanger taking up space in the frunk. Testing an NA V8 at such extreme altitudes not only greatly reduces the power of the engine, but it also runs a greater risk of overheating. It’s not really a good look for the C8 Corvette Z06, which won’t feature any turbochargers to feed extra air into its combustion chambers, but this is the whole point of vehicle development; to constantly evaluate and improve the product before it reaches the hands of the customer.
In other words, no. This is not a C8 Corvette ZR1. Nor is it the C8 Corvette Zora hybrid supercar. These vehicles are still out by several years. But take comfort that the 2022 Corvette Z06 is right around the corner.