Callaway Competition recently announced it would be killing its C7 Corvette GT3 program and temporarily withdrawing from motorsports in order to focus on developing a track-day-ready C8 Corvette. The team had been campaigning and supplying GT3-spec C7 Corvettes in the German ADAC GT Masters series since 2015, although the company had been competing in the series since 2007 with the C6 Z06R GT3.
Callaway Competition C8 Corvette
Callaway Competition CEO Ernst Wöhr confirmed the team will, unfortunately, be taking a sabbatical from the series in order to dedicate more resources towards developing a unique Callaway C8 Corvette track day special. The news release notes “Callaway Competition will once again focus more on improving the performance enhancement and refinement of Corvette road cars.”
In that vein, the tuned-up Callaway C8 Corvette will be road-legal and feature body components and modifications developed by Callaway Competition. The car will be developed in partnership with the company’s long-standing partner, Autohaus Kramm, a Berlin-based dealership specializing in the import of American vehicles like the Corvette, Ram TRX, and the Dodge Charger and Challenger Hellcat models.
Callaway’s GT3-spec C7 Corvette (pictured above) was built under license from General Motors, but was designed, engineered, and built entirely at the company’s race shop in Germany, and ran an LS-based 6.2L V8. The car bore no relation whatsoever to the Pratt & Miller run Corvette C7.R that used a 5.5L V8 that had been continuously evolving since the days of the C6.R, which made its racing debut in 2005. There was at least one C7 Corvette GT3 that made it to America and raced in the Pirelli World Challenge during the 2018 season. That car’s actually up for sale through the Callaway Competition website.
“Of course, we’ll continue to keep an eye on the racing scene and how it develops,” said Wöhr. “Plus, we’re currently in talks with General Motors USA and we’re planning a return to the German GT Championship with the new Corvette C8 GT3 in 2024.”
What Could Happen Next
With General Motors taking stewardship of the GT3-spec Corvette C8 it’s highly unlikely Callaway will develop another GT3 Corvette customer program on its own. However, GM will be looking for partners to help with distribution and trackside support of the C8 Corvette Z06 GT3.R in Europe. It’s possible we still see Callaway Competition involved in that capacity somewhere down the line.
Further reading into our finely tuned crystal ball, we know that Callaway is always looking for ways to compliment the official GM performance vehicle lineup, rather than offer direct equivalents of its own. Considering the success Ford Performance has seen with speciality items such as the Ford GT, as well as customer availability for the upcoming Mustang GT3 and Ford Bronco DR race vehicles, we could see more raw-edge versions of road-faring models like the upcoming 2023 Corvette Z06 or future variants such as the E-Ray, ZR1 and Zora.