What a way to start your racing career.
Chevy was been racing a version of the new C8 Corvette before it even went on sale. The race car was a little different than the Z06 we ended up getting. The customer car has an naturally aspirated, flat-plane crank V8 while the race car gets a couple turbos. On Thursday Chevrolet and Corvette Racing said that privateer/customer racers will be able to get the Z06 GT3.R beginning in 2024.
The 'Vette already competes in both the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and the FIA World Endurance Championship, already grabbing some class and series wins all across the planet. In a few years we'll all be able to do the same, as long as we have the skill, and a bunch of cash.
"This is the most ambitious schedule that Corvette Racing has faced in its nearly 25 years of competition," said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet U.S. vice president, Performance and Motorsports. "It will be an honor to race in both the IMSA and WEC series at some of the best tracks in the world."
The Corvette Z06 GT3.R comes with a mid-mounted 5.5-liter flat-plane crank V8. We don't have a power output as it will vary by series, but rest assured it will be competitive. This is the first time Corvette has offered a turn-key racer like this, something that's been done by Dodge with the Drag Pak and Ford with the CobraJet for years (though those are drag cars).
"It's an exciting time for Corvette - first with the reveal of the production Z06 and now confirming the Corvette Z06 GT3.R for customer racers," said Mark Stielow, Chevrolet director of motorsports competition engineering. "The availability of the Z06 GT3.R will allow customer race teams the opportunity to campaign a Corvette that has benefited from Corvette Racing's rich history."
Chevy says the Z06 GT3.R fits the criteria for sports car racing, and that more details, including pricing and support package options, will be coming at a later date. We haven't done any professional GT3 racing, even so, we bet a Corvette Z06 is an exciting place to start.