The iconic Chevrolet Corvette has gone through many changes and iterations over the years. Fans of the brand are likely more familiar with the upcoming mid-engine 2023 Z06, but its origins actually date back to 1962. Let’s explore just how far this exotic vehicle has come.
The Original 1963 Corvette Z06
Zora Arkus-Duntov is considered one of the greats in automotive history for his cultivation of the sporty Corvette of 1963. The Belgian-born American engineer was a racing enthusiast, and he believed that General Motors (GM) selling point was an optional package for Corvette lovers in the racing industry. This fostered the then unfamiliar RPO (Regular Production Option) box on the vehicle’s order sheet.
Nearly all of these coupes were powered by a 360-hp 327-cubic-inch V-8, four-speed manual transmission, and Positraction rear axle. The Z06 package could be had with a larger 36.5-gallon fiberglass fuel tank that made way for longer track sessions, leading to monikers such as “tanker” and “big tank.”
The 2001 Corvette Z06
By the time C3 or C4 generations of the Corvette came about, Z06-badged models were non-existent. To be frank, Chevy didn’t even bother to produce another Z06 nearly 40 years after the 1963 introduction. Fortunately, the company eventually decided to bring back the race-inspired car for the Corvette C5, in 2001. It followed a similar style to the OG Z06 by making performance the ultimate priority, even becoming one of the first production cars to lap the esteemed Nürburgring track in less than 8 minutes.
The 2006 Corvette Z07
Once lovers of the Corvette got the chance to experience the ultimate thrill of the C5 Z06, Chevy followed it up with something far more exhilarating. In 2006, the Z07 cranked up its track capability, while also giving it a special aluminum frame that the company claimed was 136 pounds lighter than the steel structure on the traditional version. It also had an upmarket 505-hp 7.0-liter V-8 LS7 engine. During this time, the LS7 was the most powerful Corvette ever produced and implemented technology from the corporating racing program.
The 2015 Corvette Z06
When the fourth version of the Z06 came into fruition in 2015, it came packing heat with a hellish 650-hp supercharged 6.2-liter V-8. The C7 also had many firsts, which included an available automatic transmission, along with a targa top and convertible body styles.
2023 Z06 Corvette Zenith
Saving the best for last is of course the 2023 mid-engine Corvette Z06. Clearly, the most fantastical Vette in the history of Vettes is powered by a naturally aspirated flat-plane-crank 5.5-liter V-8, exceeding its predecessors with 670 horsepower.
This special Corvette has been augmented for track duties like its forefathers. The 20-inch front and 21-inch rear wheels (with optional carbon-fiber versions) and a slew of chassis advances are intended to help this sports god get every minute second that it can from every lap, even more so when the more intense Z07 track package, that comes with added aerodynamics, higher spring rates, carbon-ceramic rotors, and Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 R tires, are blended into the Vette’s engine configuration.
Miami Lakes Chevrolet
When the time comes to purchase the 2023 Z06 Zenith Corvette or any other vehicle from the Chevrolet brand, be sure to do it at Miami Lakes Automall. We sell a wide selection of cars from the company in different shapes and sizes.
Simply view our online new car inventory. If you find something that suits your interest, chat with one of our representatives for more information.
Photo Source/Copyright: Chevrolet Pressroom