There may be a strange issue plaguing only a few Chevy Corvette Z06s. It seems that some C8 Z06s have taken up rock collecting as a hobby, with owners not enjoying their mid-mounted flat-plane V8 sports car collecting minerals from the road. Multiple owners have now reported an excess of rocks within the underbody panels of their C8 Z06s.
According to Carscoops, forum-goers have been reporting the issue for a short while. A Corvette-specific blog called Corvetteblogger wrote a post alerting owners to the issue, and noting that some folks had their underbody panels misaligned. One user, GTPrix, found “a ton” of rocks above his undertray. The undertray looked like it was sagging, allowing the rocks to enter and accumulate above it, with no escape route.
This sort of underbody paneling is extremely common in modern cars. The panels are designed to seal airflow under the car, minimizing turbulent air underneath the car to reduce drag and lift. It’s important that the panels are fitted correctly for performance, but anyone who has worked on a modern car knows that they can be fiddly to work with. The parts are simple enough but tie together in complex ways. Even one wrong step can lead to tension or compression in one panel, causing it to flex and bow as in the case of GTPrix.
The cause is allegedly because of incorrectly installed panels during pre-delivery inspections (PDI) at dealerships. As part of the PDI, dealers remove the panels and reinstall them. Somewhere in this process, the panels are being misaligned and causing rocks to collect above the panel.
Luckily, this is an extremely easy fix, even for the mechanically disinclined. A Torx T15 and a 7mm socket are all that are needed to remove and reconfigure the panels in the correct way. C8 Z06 owners can seemingly rest easy even if they have a rock-collecting issue.
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