Callaway Cars is arguably one of the most recognizable American specialty manufacturer in the business today. It’s been around since 1977, and in the 43 years that it’s been around, the company has been responsible for a lot of builds, programs, and projects, including its main series of projects, all of which are identified with a “C,” followed by a specific project number. The most recent of these projects was the C21 Aerowagen, a coach-built shooting brake version of the Chevrolet Corvette C7 that was launched in 2017.

This introduction is important because Callaway is in the process of building a special program for the all-new Corvette C8. It’s unclear if this project will be identified as the “C22,” but it remains no less significant in part due to the Corvette C8’s status as the first-ever mid-engine Corvette in the nameplate’s long and illustrious history. For now, the program isn’t close to being completed, but that didn’t stop Callaway from previewing a few of the program’s more notable items, including a new generation of the company’s famed “Double-D” exhaust system. There’s more to this program than the exhaust, and, needless to say, we can’t wait for what Callaway has in store for the mighty Corvette C8.

What has Callaway revealed from its program for the Chevrolet Corvette C8?

First Phase Callaway C8 being finalized for production. Double D exhaust with new lower fascia panel: Callaway designs...

Posted by Callaway Cars Inc on Saturday, May 16, 2020

When Chevrolet launched the Chevrolet Corvette C8 back in July 2019, it was only a matter of time before tuners from all corners of the world began preparing aftermarket programs for the first-ever mid-engine Corvette in history. Hennessey showed us what it was working on back in December 2019, and now, it’s Callaway’s turn to give us a glimpse of what it has in store for the power-packed Corvette C8.

A brightened version of the same teaser image:

Callaway Is Working on a Body Kit for the C8 Chevy Corvette, And You'll Probably Want It!
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One of the first items of consequence that we can expect from Callaway’s program is an updated version of the company’s “Double D” exhaust system.

Callaway says that this is the fifth-generation prototype of the exhaust. It comes with a single acoustic chamber with all the headers converging into one canister with multiple baffles before exiting out of the tailpipes. You’ll notice, based on the teaser image that Callaway released, that the Corvette C8’s stock wide exhaust hast been taken out, replaced instead by a central dual exhaust. If you’re a fan of Callaway, you’ll probably recognize the Double-D setup from past programs and projects the company did in recent memory. It first appeared in the Callaway C12 that was produced from 1997 to 2001. It’s evolved numerous times, too, most recently as an option for the infamous C21 Aerowagen.

The inclusion of the Double-D exhaust puts Callaway’s C8 program off to a good start.

But the good news doesn’t end there; Callaway and OZ Racing wheels have partnered to create a set of nine-spoke forged wheels that are ceramic coated and finished with clear coating for protection.

OZ Racing claims that these wheels, which will be wrapped in Pilot Sport 4S tires, are lighter than Corvette C8’s stock wheels by a “fair margin.” Take that for what it’s worth.

What can we expect from the rest of Callaway’s program for the C8?

2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray gallery Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Callaway’s decision to reveal the exhaust and wheels setup for its Corvette C8 program has us salivating at the thought of what remains in store for the all-new American sports car. We’re particularly interested in the styling and aerodynamic upgrades that Callaway has already confirmed as important parts of the whole package.

details won’t be revealed for at least a few more months — maybe longer if the coronavirus pandemic doesn’t slow down — but it is something that we can all look forward to in these trying times. Mind you, Chevrolet already did a lot of good work in designing the Corvette C8 to look like a proper mid-engine supercar; whatever Callaway adds to what’s already an impressive-looking Corvette C8 is something that we’re all excited to see.

Is the Corvette C8 benefiting from an engine upgrade program from Callaway?

2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray gallery
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Oh, yes, it is. That much has been revealed, though exact details won’t arrive anytime soon.

What we do know is that Callaway is building not one, but a variety of powertrain upgrades that could bring more life to a performance car that’s already brimming with power.

Remember, the mid-engine Corvette C8 is powered by a 6.2-liter LT2 V-8 engine that produces 490 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque. Those power figures not only represent a 40-horsepower and 10-pound-feet-of-torque increase over the Corvette C7 Stingray it replaced but, more importantly, those numbers represent a solid baseline that Callaway can work from once it establishes its powertrain programs for the Corvette C8.

Could we expect Callaway’s powertrain upgrades to sit on the same level as Hennessey’s engine upgrades for Corvette C8? Hennessey’s program included engine upgrade programs that raised the output of the Corvette C8’s V-8 engine anywhere from 700 horsepower to a knee-buckling 1,200 horsepower?

We’re not going to put it past Callaway that it can hit those power figures. The more important question is whether it’s going to do it. For the most part, Callaway has been the more subdued builder when compared to Hennessey.

Whatever those engine upgrades end up looking, Callaway’s program for the Corvette C8 is off on the right foot, to say the least.

Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert - kirby@topspeed.com
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read More
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