Diving Into the Chevy Corvette ZR1’s Aerodynamics With Exterior Design Boss Tom Peters
The nastiest ‘Vette ever to roll out of GM’s gate is more than just a manic motor.
You could be forgiven for never making it past the 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1's ludicrous power output upon first learning about it. After all, 755 horsepower and 715 pound-feet of torque has a way of grabbing your attention—even if you're not behind the wheel of a 3,560-pound sports car trying to send that power to the pavement through just two (admittedly beefy) tires. But the new "King of the Hill" Vette, as General Motors likes to call the ZR1, has far, far more going for than a bigger supercharger and a new fuel-injection setup. After all, it takes more than just a ton of power to threaten the likes of the Porsche 911 GT2 RS and the Lamborghini Huracan Performante at the Nurburgring. You need aerodynamics on your side, too.
So in order to learn a little more about the airflow mastery that sets the ZR1 apart from lesser Corvettes, your humble author sat down—or rather, stood up—with exterior design director Tom Peters after the new Chevy's L.A. Auto Show debut back in November. On the show stand, Peters gave me a full walkaround with the ZR1 convertible equipped with the standard-issue low drag aerodynamics package, as well as the mightily-bewinged ZR1 coupe with the ZTK Performance package—a wing that generates nearly half a ton of downforce at its limit. One fun fact about that Batman-worthy apparatus on the mega-Vette's ass: That's so much force, the wing has to be hooked into the chassis, not simply affixed to the body work as with many lesser spoilers.
If you want to know more about it, though...well, you'll have to watch the video above to find out.