Chevrolet will unveil at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show a more powerful version of the Corvette Z06: the Corvette ZR1, initially called Blue Devil during its development phase by most of the press. The ZR1 will be priced around $100,000. The ZR1 comes as a direct response at the Dodge Viper unveiled at Detroit Auto Show. The new Corvette will also compete with Porsche 911 Turbo and Ferrari’s next F430 Challenge Stradale.
Although from the spy shots seen you will say that the Blue Devil will look like a usual Corvette, but on a closer look on the car and to his engine will tell you that the Blue Devil is more what the name says: a devil.
When General Motors confirmed the existence of the car they also said that the Corvette ZR1 will "surp the Viper’s newly won pole position in the race for the title of most powerful U.S. sports car". It is also said that the Blue Devil will confirm that Corvette is "the most powerful, most capable, best handling sports car in the United States."
Chevy turned heads earlier this year with the introduction of the C6 Z06 performance model, which built upon the stock C6s bar-raising capabilities by dropping in a hand-built 505-horsepower 7.0-liter LS7 pushrod V8 with 470 lb-ft of torque. Add that to a suspension system, brakes, and gearbox that were fine-tweaked on the track, and you have a performance machine that’s only outclassed by six-figure machines from places with unpronounceable names.
Chevrolet will increase the LS7’s displacement and bolt on a supercharger to bump output by 145 hp. So the 7.0 litre V8 engine will now deliver 650 hp. This will help the car to make the 0 to 60 mph sprint in 3.5 seconds and have a top speed of 215 mph.
The Blue Devil will pack more than just a powerful punch. While fiberglass has long been used in Corvettes for its light weight and relatively cheap cost, body panels for the Blue Devil will be constructed out of carbon fiber. This will help the supercar to reduce the curb weight from 3132 lbs (the 2007 Z06) to 2900 lbs.
It will be built at GM’s Performance Center in Wixom, Michigan, with annual production numbers between the 1500-2000 range. Production on will start in the first quarter of 2008.
This Corvette has been known within GM as the Blue Devil, after the mascot of GM CEO Rick Wagoner’s alma mater, Duke, and also as the Sting Ray, but probably will go with Z07 name, or maybe Z06.R.
The Chevrolet Corvette first appeared in 1953 as a unique American entry into the sports car market dominated by European makes. Although not a muscle car by definition, the Corvette used muscle car powertrains and has represented American performance for almost fifty years.
First generation: C1 - 1955-1962
The first generation started in 1953 and ended in 1962, with the noteworthy addition of optional fuel injection in 1957 (also available on Impalas). Injection first saw regular use on a gasoline engine two years prior on the Mercedes-Benz 300SL "gullwing" roadster.
Power came from an existing Chevrolet 235 cubic inch 6 cylinder engine. Modifications were done to it such as a three carburetor design and dual exhaust which resulted in higher horsepower ratings. The 150 hp ’Blue Flame Special’ engine was paired with a a2-speed automatic gearbox. The first twenty-five vehicles used the standard Chevrolet ’baby moon’ passenger car wheel covers due to a shortage of wheel covers.
The only transmission was Chevrolet’s Powerglide two-speed automatic. Although the powertrain was a departure from typical American straight-line performance, coupled with its light weight, the Corvette boasted excellent handling and road feel. The Corvette’s front suspension of coil springs and wishbones, used slightly altered springs enclosing one inch diameter tubular shock absorbers. The Corvette also had a large diameter anti-rool bar and at the rear, had four-leaf semi-elliptical springs which were inclined front to rear to approvide approximately 15 percent roll understeer.
The Corvette received its first major styling change in 1956. Changes included an all-new body with better integrated styling featuring "scooped out" sides, outside door handles, roll-up windows and an optional removable hardtop. The 6 cylinder engine was dropped and the 265 cid V8 was now standard, though it was still rated at just 195 bhp.
The 1957 Corvette gained power to go along with its outstanding styling and road feel. Many Corvette enthusiasts consider the 1957 Corvette was the most aesthetically pleasing body style of the pre-1963 Corvettes, while others believe that it was the best styling of all time. And backing up that beautiful styling was the Corvette’s first true powerful engine, a 283 cid V8. A bored out version of the 1956 265 cid V8, the new 283 cid V8 came in four versions. The base form had a four-barrel carb and was rated at 220 bhp. Next came an early fuel injected version rated at 250 bhp and then the dual four-barrel carb 283 rated at 270 bhp. But late in the model year, in May 1957, the true performance version of the 283 made its debut. Sporting an advanced fuel injection system, the new "fuelie" 283 made 283 bhp. Its 1 horsepower per cubic inch output was a record in 1957 and it was played up by the advertising and media. At the same time, Chevrolet introduced its new four speed manual transmission, and the Corvette was on its way to stardom.
Second generation: C2 - 1963-1967
The second or mid-year generation, designed by Larry Shinoda, with major inspiration from a previous unproduced design called the "Q Corvette" by Peter Brock and Chuck Pohlmann, and under the styling direction of Bill Mitchell, started in 1963 and ended in 1967.
The second generation Corvette saw the debut of the gorgeous Sting Ray body. A two passenger coupe body style joined the convertible for the first time and featured a split rear-window design. The Corvette featured an independent rear suspension (replacing the previous version’s straight axle), fuel-injection, and knock off wheels. It even had a racing option, the Z-06. Nevertheless, the Z-06 option consisted of a fuel-injected 327 cid V8, 36.5 gallon fuel tank, heavy-duty brakes, heavy-duty suspension, and knock-off wheels.
For the 1965 year, there were no major improvements to the body of the vehicle. However, under the hood lurked a new engine. The 396 cubic-inch V-8 was introduced offering 425 horsepower. A bulge in the hood of the Corvette hinted at this monster engine it was hiding. Disc brakes were added and helped in stopping the vehicle. For an optional price, the exhaust pipes could be fitted to the side of the car, just like they had been done for the Bill Mitchell show cars.
The 1966 Corvette featured a new eggcrate grille and functional engine compartment cooling vents. The previous year’s 396 V8 was dropped. In its place, a new muscle Corvette was introduced, the "427" with its own funnel-shaped, power bulge on the hood. There were two of these big blocks at first. RPO L36, priced at $181, was rated at 390 bhp.
For 1967, the Corvette got additional engine cooling vents, and 427s got a different "power bulge" hood and more top horsepower. The new hood had a large, forward facing air scoop, usually with engine call-outs on both sides. The standard engine was a 327 V8 rated at 300 bhp.
Third generation: C3 - 1968-1982
The third generation, patterned after Chevrolet’s "Mako Shark" (designed by Larry Shinoda), started in 1968 and ended in 1982. This generation has the distinction of being introduced to the motoring public in an unorthodox — and unintended — fashion.
The 1968 Corvette was a dramatic change in appearance from previous Corvettes. The styling bore a striking resemblence to Chevrolet’s Mako Shark II concept car and was a bold look. The new Corvette also introduced hidden windshield wipers and removable T-tops on Coupe models. A new three speed automatic transmission replaced the previous two-speed unit. Under the hood, the Corvette gained several interesting engine options, including the 327 cid V8 L79 rated at 350 bhp, and the L89 aluminum head option for the L71.
The Corvette was basically carry over for 1969, though now officially called the "Stingray" (one word) The coupe outsold the convertible for the first time, and would continue to do so in all subsequent years. Engine choices were changed with a new 350 cid V8 replacing the previous 327. In addition, two Corvettes were built with the ZL1 engine.
In 1973, the Corvette dropped the front chrome bumpers for a urethane-compound "5 mph" bumper but kept the rear chrome bumpers. In 1974, The rear chrome bumpers became urethane, too, making 1973 the last Corvette model year with any chrome bumpers. 1975 was the last year for the convertible, and 1978 saw the introduction of a glass bubble rear window. In 1980, the Corvette got an integrated aerodynamic redesign that resulted in a significant reduction in drag. In 1982, a opening rear hatch was offered for the first time on the Corvette avalible on the collectors edition model. A new engine featuring cross fire injection, a fuel injection carburator hybrid, was also introduced this year
Fourth generation: C4 - 1984-1996
The highly anticipated fourth generation Corvette began production in March 1983 as a 1984 model. The 1983 model year was skipped due to production problems, although 44 prototype 1983 models were completed.
The 1984 Corvette was the first year of the Fourth Generation Corvette and debuted in April 1983. Its new design, digital instrumentation, and new interior was a hit with buyers, and the Corvette sold over double the number of 1982 Corvettes. The C4 featured 16x8.5 wheels with P255/50VR-16 tires and the choice of either a four-speed automatic or four-speed manual transmission.
1986 saw the return of the convertible. A Yellow Corvette Convertible was chosen to pace the 1986 Indianapolis 500, and to commerate, all convertibles came with stick-on Pace Car decals.
For the 1992 model year, the 300 horsepower LT1 engine was introduced, which significantly improved the performance of the base C4 cars. Also introduced in 1992 was Acceleration Slip Regulation, or traction control, which utilized the Corvette’s brakes, spark retard and throttle close-down to prevent excessive wheel-spin of the rear tires, and possible loss of control. The traction control device could be switched off if desired. In 1996, the final year of C4 production, the 330 horsepower LT4 small block V8 was installed in all manual transmission-equipped cars; all 1996 Corvettes with automatic transmissions utilized the LT1.
Fifth generation: C5 - 1997-2003
Production of the C5 Corvette began in 1997 and ended with the 2003 model year. The C5 was a radical change from the long-running C4. The new C5 Corvette featured an all new LS1 small block 350 V8 rated at an amazing 345 bhp. The convertible was unavailable. The low production numbers reflect the short production year.
In 1999 a new hardtop coupe bodystyle joined the line up along with the traditional removeable roof and the convertible models. To back up its performance orientation, the Hardtop came standard with the six-speed manual transmission, Z51 suspension, a 3.42 limited-slip rear axle, and Goodyear Eagle F1 tires.
2001 saw the return of the Z06 Corvette. Only available as a fixed top coupe (and effectively replacing the previous "lower priced" hardtop), the Z06 featured a special suspension package, wider wheels, larger tires, special instrumentation, a special exhaust, and a 385 bhp version of the regular 350 V8, the LS6. The Z06 came only with a six-speed manual transmission and also featured functioning front air intake gills and functioning rear brake duct air intake grills directly behind the doors.
GM claimed that 405 hp versions of the Z06 could make the 0-60 run in 3.9 seconds and through the quarter mile in 12.4 seconds. In the hands of experienced drivers the 2002-2004 Z06 has made 11 second passes. The current quarter mile record is 11.7. The car’s top speed of 176 mph (283 kph) was achieved in 5th gear at 6,500 rpm (redline), as 6th gear was an overdrive/economy gear. It proved to be a well rounded track vehicle as well, with the ability to do more than simply accelerate.
Sixth generation: C6 - present
The sixth generation Corvette has not changed as much as the previous generation Corvette did relative to its predecessor. The design engineers tried to improve, not reinvent, and by many accounts did a very good job.
The car features dramatic new styling, the new 6.0L V-8 engine that produces 400 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque (298 kw and 542 Nm), a revised suspension and more powerful brakes. It delivers extreme performance capabilities and offers value, style, quality and comfort.
The new Z06 arrived as a 2006 model in the third quarter of 2005. It has a 7.0 L (7,008 cc/427.6 in³) version of the small block engine codenamed LS7. Officially certified output is 505 hp (377 kW). Dave Hill, the chief engineer for the C6 Corvette, says that it is a much further departure from the standard Corvettes and more like the C6-R that GM is building for the American Le Mans Series. Its performance is similar to the Ford GT and the Dodge Viper SRT-10.
The 2008 Dodge Viper SRT10 boasts more of what performance aficionados crave: kick-in-the-pants, throw-back-in-the-seat power, combined with benchmark braking, world-class ride and handling, a race-inspired interior and bold exterior styling. While every SRT vehicle offers balanced, overall performance, the heart and soul of the new 2008 Dodge Viper SRT10 is its standout powertrain.
The new Dodge Viper SRT10’s deep-skirted V-10 aluminum engine block was revised for a 1-millimeter larger bore, raising the displacement to 8.4 liters from 8.3 liters. With strengthened bulkheads and improved water jackets for better cooling, the block includes pressed-in iron cylinder liners and cross-bolted main bearing caps for strength and durability.
The Viper SRT10’s 8.4-liter engine breathes through new cylinder heads equipped with Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC)-shaped combustion chambers, larger valves and Variable Valve Timing (VVT). VVT electronically adjusts when the exhaust valves are open and closed according to engine speed and load, allowing the engine to “breathe” cleaner and more efficiently.
The 2008 Dodge Viper SRT10 remains available in two body styles – Roadster and Coupe. Both feature a dramatic new hood with a larger, more efficient hood scoop for air induction and larger, functional hood louvers to facilitate a greater cooling effect for the more powerful 8.4-liter, 600-horsepower V-10 engine underneath.
The sixth generation of the 911 series’ top-of-the-range model made its world premiere on February 28, 2006 at the Geneva Motor Show and is available in German dealerships as from June 24, 2006.
the new 911 Turbo meets the highest expectations in terms of engine performance. The classic flat-six unit develops 353 kW (480 bhp) at 6,000 rpm from a 3.6-litre displacement. Maximum torque of 620 Nm is available between 1,950 and 5,000 rpm.
To achieve that capability, we’ve combined VarioCam Plus with twin turbocharger units featuring Variable Turbine Geometry (VTG) – a totally new technology on a petrol-engined car. With a standard manual gearbox, the new 911Turbo requires just 3.9 seconds to reach 100 km/h (62 mph). Equipped with the latest optional Tiptronic S transmission, the car is 0.2 seconds quicker on the standard sprint. Benchmark times to 200 km/h (124 mph) are 12.8 and 12.2 seconds, respectively. Maximum speed with either transmission is 310 km/h (193 mph).
Another major development on the new 911 Turbo is the car’s lightweight design and construction.The doors and front lid are made from aluminium which offers a range of benefits in terms of both performance and economy. Every gram of weight on every component is there for a specific reason. As a result, the standard model (with six-speed manual gearbox) weighs just 1,585 kg.
Ferrari will unveil the F430 Challenge Stradale as a 2008 model. As the history tells the F430 CS will have a more powerful V8 engine than the F430 Challenge. For example, for the 360, both Modena and 360 Challenge were powered by a V8 engine with an output of 400 hp and the 360 CS got a more powerful engine: a 325 hp V8.
The F430 and F430 Challenge are powered by a 490 hp V8 engine and we expect the new F430 CS to get by the same V8 engine, but with bigger output: 520 hp. The standard F430 has a curb weight of 3196 lbs and it is expected that the new F430 CS to be 220 lbs lighter.
In order to reduce the weight, the 430 CS will feature Magnesium sport wheels and the carbon grille in the back (also good to better cool the engine) and the door windows won’t be made of plastic like on the 360 CS. The exhaust pipes are located further up in the middle and not on the side like in the F 430. The brakes are upgraded with bigger discs, the soft Pirelli P-Zero tires give the car enormous grip, and the interior is completed with deep sport seats.