Production is reportedly delayed.
General Motors has struggled to keep up with demand for the C8 Corvette. In its third model year under the eighth generation, the 2022 Chevrolet Corvette sees a few minor upgrades, including an updated fuel injection system and some new color options. With so many buyers already clamoring over the base Stingray model with 490 horsepower, we imagine the anticipated Z06 version will have a long waiting list.
Early reports claimed Chevy would reveal the Z06 variant right around now, but GM Authority believes the timeline was pushed back considerably. The outlet does not cite a specific source but reports the Z06 will arrive as a 2023 model year vehicle. Chevy reportedly planned to release the Z06 as a late 2022 model, though those plans were delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
If this reporting is accurate, it may be a while before we see the Z06 officially revealed. The 2023 Corvette model lineup should be announced sometime in summer 2022, meaning we may not receive any more details about the car until next year. Various insider sources claim the C8 Z06 will use a smaller 5.5-liter V8 engine rather than the 6.2-liter LT2 used in the Stingray. This engine will be a revised version of the one used in the C8.R racecar.
Though the displacement is less, this downsized V8 will reportedly get a 32-valve dual overhead cam setup with a flat-plane crank, like a Shelby GT350. The only previous Corvette to use a DOHC engine like this was the LT5-powered C4 generation ZR-1, though it did not have a flat-plane crank.
Most reports claim the Z06 will produce more than 600 horsepower and send power to the rear wheels through an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission. An even more potent Zora model is rumored to arrive in 2025 with over 1,000 hp from a twin-turbocharged flat-plane crank V8 paired to a hybrid drivetrain. The Z06 logo leaked onto the internet earlier this year with stylized lettering evoking the Vette's side air intakes. That gave enthusiasts hope the car might arrive soon. But it looks like we will all have to be patient.