The 2023 C8 Corvette Z06 debuted on October 26th and since then, there’s been news. Shortly after its debut, the new Z06 visualizer launched for customers to configure the All American Supercar virtually, which was then followed by a cameo at the 2021 SEMA Show. And most recently, the first civilian not involved in the development of the car itself has officially gotten behind the wheel for the first time. His name? Jay Leno.
In a recent episode of Jay Leno’s Garage, the former Tonight Show host took a drive in a pre-production model with Aaron Link, lead development engineer on the 2023 Corvette Z06.
Leno seems to have a particularly good relationship with GM. In years prior, the TV personality was able to enjoy C7 Corvette variants well before the general public and the rest of the media were admitted, and more recently got to drive around with the GMC Hummer EV, as well.
Something that Leno seems particularly excited about is the 5.5L DOHC LT6 V8 engine that’s exclusive to the C8 Corvette Z06. This high-revving V8 is truly one of a kind, as it’s the most powerful naturally aspirated V8 engine to ever exist in a production car, as well as being the highest displacement engine with a flat-plane crankshaft, allowing for engine speeds to reach nearly 9,000 RPM. All of this engineering produces an exhaust note that’s like nothing we’ve ever seen in a Corvette, and Jay Leno is here for it.
Leno also hints at the price tag. We wouldn’t be surprised if somebody from the Corvette team clued him in on it, but it’s nevertheless easy to surmise that this exotic vehicle experience should come in well under $100,000 USD. One could have a loaded C7 Z06 with a Z07 package and all of the other bells and whistles for just over that price. And while we’re sure a loaded 2023 C8 Corvette Z06 will come on closer to $110,000 USD, that screaming LT6 V8 engine will remain constant though the vehicle lineup. So if it’s a two-seat, flat-plane crank V8 mid-engined car you’re in the market for, there’s gonna be only one on the market that’s under six figures.