2022 Chevy Corvette Z06 Will Have 625-HP, Flat-Plane V8 That Revs to 9,000 RPM: Report
It’ll supposedly be a road-going version of the C8.R race car’s power plant.
The Corvette is quickly transforming into a genuine supercar. It saw a big jump in performance with the new C8, which can run sub-three-second zero to 60 times with the assistance of the popular Z51 package. The more potent Z06 version of the Corvette has yet to be unveiled, however, MotorTrend claims to have obtained details of the car's drivetrain from an anonymous source within GM. If the source is to be trusted—and the rumors of the next-generation C9 going full electric are true—the combustion engine in the Corvette is not going quietly. Eight cylinders, dual overhead cams, 5.5 liters, a flat-plane crank, 625 horsepower and a redline of not 7,000, not 8,000, but 9,000 rpm.
For certain, it's a bold claim. We've heard a similar story in the past, though, and with an additional source now corroborating these details independently, the level of doubt is getting lower every day.
But it's not as easy as Corvette engineers just throwing a race-bred engine like this into a car. This 5.5-liter V8 they plan to use is very similar in layout to the 5.2-liter "Voodoo" flat-plane V8 in the Mustang GT350. Ford engineers had to deal with the intense vibration associated with having such a large flat-plane V8 by attaching a rubber damper to the front of the crankshaft. It's not clear if Chevrolet will take a similar approach, but Corvette engineers surely have a solution planned either way. The 5.5-liter powerplant is not only similar to the GT350's engine, it's similar to the racing engine used in the C8.R endurance racer. We can therefore assume that, if they found a solution to this vibration in the race car, such a solution could be adapted into the Z06.
And as for rumors concerning turbocharged power for the Z06, that seems to be a mix-up. This same basic engine will reportedly be found in the even-higher performance ZR1, albeit with a turbo for each bank of cylinders. This twin-turbocharged powerplant is expected to produce the disorienting 800-plus horsepower that we've been hearing so much about. That's also not the end of the road as far as power goes. A swan-song, hybrid Corvette approaching a rumored 1,000 horsepower seems all but confirmed at this point. The Corvette was built ready to support all-wheel-drive, there's already space for the power electronics and motor—it's all there.
The most powerful Corvette ever will be called the Zora, named after the father of the Corvette, Zora Arkus-Duntov. And if this is the end of combustion power for the legendary sports car, then it's one hell of a way to go.
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