Though it doesn’t bring increased power to the table — a privilege reserved for the future Z06 or a ZR1 – the new Z51 package for the Corvette Stingray does bring along significant upgrades that customers can benefit from, if they regularly plunder a track.
With this package installed, your Corvette Stingray will be fitted with a dry-sump oiling system that plays a crucial role while cornering, slightly shorter gear ratios, larger-capacity Bilstein dampers, a rear-stabilizer bar and forged rims that have grown up to 19 inches up front and 20 inches in the rear, an inch bigger than the standard Stingray.
What can arguably be called the most significant addition is the limited slip differential — an electronically controlled hydraulic clutch pack – which modulates the rate at which the differential transfers torque across the axle. When the car corners, the LSD acts like an open differential to reduce understeer, but when power is added, electronic slip diff is engaged to handle the traction and balance it all out.
Along with ride tweaks, the Z51 also focuses on the tweaking the aerodynamics of the Stingray. While the standard one has impressive figures, the Z51 package makes it better with the addition of a rear spoiler to keep it planted to the ground and gaping air inlets at the rear fenders to cool transmission and differential.
People opting for the Z51 package have the option to choose the Magnetic Ride Control that promises track-like performance with a more comforting ride for $1,795.
All of these upgrades play a role in its impressive cornering at 1.0g and a 0 to 60 sprint of less than 4 seconds.
GM has set the package at a premium of $8,005, bringing the total cost for the Stingray Z51 to $60,000. We are still uncertain if the Z51 package will be available on the convertible model; if so, the package total will be $65,000.
Though the C7 Stingray is proving to be a great track-day car, as well as a pleasant cruiser, the Z51 package takes the excitement and thrill of driving the new Corvette Stingray up a notch.
UPDATE 4/26/13: GM has released the pricing and more details on the Z51 package.
gallery: Chevrolet Corvette Stingray