For fans of American-made cars with gut-punching acceleration, it's hard for anything to hold a candle to the launch of the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon this year. But should you want your insides twisted up into a pretzel as well, there's really only one thing on the docket that fits the bill: the 2018 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1, spotted (and heard) back at the Nurburgring this week by Performance Drive.
These test mules and their bulging hoods have been spotted with increasing frequency since the spring—one was informally clocked putting down a 7:30 'Ring time with traffic—but this video is one of the best-sounding recordings of that alleged DOHC LT5 V8 engine. When you can hear a car coming around the famous Brunnchen corner before you see it, you're in for a good time.
Even with a funky noise-limiting muffler setup, the ZR1 in the video still belts out a glorious, possibly supercharged song. For a while, it wasn't clear whether the ZR1 would be offered with the rumored LT5 or simply an upgraded version of the current 650-horsepower LT4 found in the Z06 performance trim. Earlier spy videos featured a subdued soundtrack with more pronounced supercharger whine, but the ZR1's taller hood (to accommodate the DOHC setup) and snarling exhaust note here has us convinced that the LT5 will at least be an option.
But will all this noise amount to a good show on the 'Ring? If the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE is any indication, the company is more committed than ever to showing its European rivals that it can win an away game with ease. And those massive openings in the ZR1's lower front fascia could indicate they've also worked on fixing the overheating issues that have repeatedly popped up in the Z06. Time will tell—the Corvette ZR1 should formally debut later this year.