• Aug 31st 2011 at 4:00PM
  • 8

There are countless elements that determine the success of a sports car: handling, braking, styling, to name a few. But, in order to be considered a truly great high performance vehicle, there is one absolute neccesty: a truly great high performance powerplant. The Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 delivers with a supercharged LS9 6.2L "Small Block" engine. While some might debate the validity of applying the Small Block moniker to an LS engine, Chevy believes you can draw a direct line between these modern mammoths and the original Small Block introduced over half a century ago.
The 8-cylinder LS9 is rated at 638 hp, powering the ZR1 to a top speed of 205 mph, making it the fastest GM production car ever built. With a 0-60 mph time of 3.4 seconds, the ZR1 ranks just below super cars like the Ferrari Enzo and McLaren F1. Now, we're not saying that $100,000ish MSRP is cheap, but if you have the means, it's a steal considering the elite company this Corvette finds itself in.

All of that power is greatly augmented by an Eaton TVS supercharger that makes use of a twin four-lobe rotor design. To further increase power and efficiency the supercharger has been outfitted with a charge cooling system that decreases inlet air temperature.

Another feature that places the ZR1 among a class of pricier exotics are its standard Brembo carbon-ceramic brake rotors. Made of a ceramic silicon carbide material backed by ultra-strong and lightweight carbon-fiber, these durable rotors could feasibly last the entire life of the vehicle.

GM didn't stop there with the use of carbon-fiber. The entire hood is constructed of the spaceage material, save for the distinctive clear polycarbonate window that offers a view of the engine's intercooler from the exterior. The roof, rocker molding, front spliter, front fenders, and rear spoiler get the carbon-fiber treatment as well.

The ZR1 continues a Corvette tradition of offering high performance at a low price (relative to competitors) and packs enough tech to pull TRANSLOGIC away from the electric cars and bullet trains for a day of spirited driving in Detroit.

Click the image below to watch TRANSLOGIC 69: Corvette ZR1:

I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.

    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Months Ago
      As a GM retiree, I'm glad to see Corvette is still the car that sets the standard for US car manufacturers ! GO GM !
      • 8 Months Ago
      the only thing better than translogic 69 is TL 77 you get 8 more
      • 8 Months Ago
      @ $100000. plus dealer mark up sign me up for the 2013 shelby gt 500
      • 8 Months Ago
      Corvettes haven't been hot looking since the fifties.
      • 8 Months Ago
      I expected a better 0 to sixty time with that much power. The Evo 8 FQ-400 can do that 0 to 60 time.
        • 8 Months Ago
        0-60 time here is traction-limited. The ZR1 is RWD, after all while the Evo is AWD. You want to compare power, then look at the 1/4 mile trap speed (1/4 mile in 10.9 seconds at 118 mph for the Evo 8, 11.5 sec @ 126.9 mph for the ZR1...)
      • 8 Months Ago
      The only car I would consider trading my '62 Vette for, and its made in the U.S.A.
      • 8 Months Ago
      I own a 2010 grand sport and absolutely love it. Only thing i would change is to own the ZR1
    Share This Photo X