A completely stock Z06 in very hot weather has beaten the claimed time by almost a second.
The Chevrolet Corvette Z06 has been a long time coming, and now that it's available, customers are spending big on the American supercar. It's a very impressive machine that has been developed to handle as well as or better than its European counterparts, but how does it do in a straight line? Engineers spent an age on the suspension, but the engine is brilliant too. A 5.5-liter naturally aspirated flat-plane crank V8, the most powerful unassisted V8 ever, produces 670 horsepower at 8,400 rpm, with the red line arriving at 8,600. 460 lb-ft of torque is sent to the rear axle exclusively, reaching its peak at 6,300 rpm. According to Chevrolet, this means 0-60 mph in 2.6 seconds and a quarter-mile time of 10.6 seconds. Are those figures accurate? Let's find out.
Emelia Hartford is well-known in 'Vette circles as the owner of the world's quickest C8 Corvette, and because she has provided so much exposure for the sports car, General Motors was more than happy to give her the keys to a brand-new Z06. This one is fitted with the Z07 package with extra aero, upgraded suspension, carbon-ceramic brakes, and carbon fiber wheels. She took the car to the Famoso Dragstrip in California and her first time on the quarter-mile was 10.96 seconds with a trap speed of 129.51 mph.
However, this was without the traction control completely disabled, so another run was in order. After a lively burnout, she sets off again, this time managing a time of 10.75 seconds at 128.82 mph. Not far off from Chevy's claims, but there was still room for improvement.
The car wouldn't activate launch control with the traction all the way off. After calling Chevrolet, Hartford was shown a new feature called "Rapid Exit," where you hold both paddle shifters, let go of one, and grab it again. You then hold the brake and mash your right foot to the floor. Once letting go of the brake, the car takes off. This will provide an alternative to the typical launch control system, and she opts to run the car on the unprepped side of the track first. On the first run on the unprepared side, you can hear a lot of wheelspin all the way until fourth gear, so the car goes slower. Clearly, trying different modes will be required to find the best launch.
Switching back to the prepared surface with new drive modes and launch methods seemed to help, but not much. 10.74 seconds was the time with an exit of 127.53 mph.
Emelia then customizes the launch control, deciding what rpm the car should launch at. She also raises the front tire pressure and adds some higher-octane fuel since the California fuel is not optimal. Interestingly, Chevrolet would not allow her to remove the passenger seat, so the manufacturer is confident that the car can be quicker. After the changes were made, the car ran another 10.7. Due to heat soak issues, a break was taken. Once the car cooled, another attempt was made, and this resulted in a stunning time of 10.51 seconds at 130.11 mph. The Performance Data Recorder says that 0-60 mph was done in 2.2 seconds, an improvement of 0.4 seconds over the stock claim. The PDR also recorded a quarter-mile of 10.45. One more run at 10.52 was recorded.
The new Z06 is a highly capable machine in the corners, and it's clearly just as impressive in a straight line. Good job, Chevy.