Don't expect a halo ZR1 model to follow on the heels of the all-new Corvette Z06, says Chevrolet. The Z06 was in the spotlight yesterday when it was officially announced at the Detroit Auto Show. Constructed primarily of aluminum and composites and fitted with a 6.2-liter supercharged LT4 V8 producing "at least" 625 horsepower and 635 pound-feet of torque, the upcoming 2015 Z06 is the only range-topping model currently on the automaker's burner, according to Tadge Juechter, chief engineer on the C7.
Nearly 25 years ago, the C4 ZR-1, a cooperative effort with Lotus, put 6,939 units in the hands of customers between 1990 and 1995. There was no C5 ZR-1, but the automaker launched a halo C6 ZR1 (dropping the hyphen in the process) in 2009 that was discontinued only last year after the arrival of the all-new C7 Stingray.
While it is still under development, the new C7 Z06 should exceed the performance of the outgoing C6 ZR1 in every measurable benchmark. Pricing won't be released for months, but a low six-figure base price shouldn't raise eyebrows when its exotic construction, power output and talent are taken into account and compared against how much others in the segment are charging. (Juechter tells Autoblog that if you were able to afford a C6 ZR1, you can afford a new Z06.)
Introducing a ZR1 halo car above the upcoming Z06, which is due at the end of the year, would require significant investment in design, testing and certification – for negligible performance gains. It appears that Chevy is choosing to focus on the Z06 for now, and wait for the next great technological leap before investing in another ZR1.