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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Corvette ZR1 Sport

After years of speculation, spy photos, and rumors, General Motors revealed its Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 as a 2010 model. As expected, the ZR1 is the most powerful and most expensive Corvette model ever. In fact, the ZR1 is expected to be the first production Corvette to hit a top speed of 200mph.

The time has arrived, no more gossip, unidentified sightings or gibberish. General Motors is releasing its 2009 model of the Chevrolet Corvette, called the ZR1. As anticipated, the ZR1 Corvette comes out the gate as the most powerful Chevy Corvette model ever built. It is also the most expensive but a fraction of what a competing Porsche costs.

The all-new LS9 engine is based on a modified LS3 6.2-liter block and is expected to deliver 100 horsepower per liter. One can expect the motor to produce 620 horsepower with approximately 600 pound-feet.

Some performance test numbers have not been disclosed by GM due to some ongoing tweaking. However, it's safe to say the ZR1 should go from zero to 60mph close to the 3.0 second mark since the Z06 does it in 3.6 seconds. Moreover, the Z06 only has 505 horsepower compared to 620 for the new ZR1.

The ZR1, according to Chevy engineers, sports a power to weight ratio that is nothing short of outstanding. It is said to have a better power to weight ratio than the Porsche GT2, the Ferrari 599 and the Lamborghini Murcielago LP640. In summary, the new Corvette is said to weigh nearly 200 pounds more than a Z06 and to push some of the weight to the front just a tad to yield a 52/48 front/rear ratio.

GM engineers utilized the Z06 chassis as a base, but tweaked the front and rear independent suspension to work with the ZR1's ultra-wide tires for increased road traction. According to GM, the car achieves 1g cornering grip.

The ZR1 features GM's Magnetic Selective Ride Control (MSRC) suspension system which is an adjustable suspension system. The system adjusts every millisecond and offers sharp handling during aggressive driving, and a comfortable luxurious ride when cruising on open roads or along the countryside. Corvette chief engineer's claim due to the MSRC damping control, the ZR1 has a less adventurous ride over bumps than its predecessor, the Z06.

Other tweaks in the chassis area include Brembo calipers which hug large carbon-ceramic rotors which are typically made for Ferrari's Enzo and FXX. The CCM is needed due to the ZR1 having the largest wheel width and diameter of any Corvette produced. The rims measure 19 inches up front and 20 inches in rear diameter. The width of the rear is a colossal 12 inches, while the front wheels are close behind at 10 inches of width.

It all sounds good, so when can you drive it. You'll have to wait a bit until first spin, which is a few months off. Maybe the numbers above can convince you to wait for the fastest, high-tech, and perhaps the most unique Corvette ever made.


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