Launch Control Catastrophe For Bone Stock C7 Corvette Z51
There comes a certain level of trust in your brand-new car, a trust that it will do everything it is designed to do, properly, and without fault. Corvette Forum member C7s recently ran up against a major flaw in his 2016 Corvette, in that it destroyed its own differential while using launch control. Yes, the car happened to be at the drag strip at the time, but that shouldn’t matter. The car was raced in stock trim with the OEM fitted tires still on the car, nothing should have gone wrong, and yet everything did.
In the video below, you can see that C7s launches the car from a dead stop, slinging the revs up to about 5000 before dropping the hammer. This is a 7MT equipped car, so you can almost feel the driveline shudder under you as the clutch grips and the differential bits scatter. From there, the engine revs and shifts don’t do C7s any good, as the damage has already been done.
The car slowly coasts to a stop, and track workers help push the stricken car back off the starting line, as the driver curses the car’s betrayal of trust. After some investigating, the owner says the spider gears in the differential sheared and thus forward motion was rendered impossible.
On the plus side, GM Performance is standing behind their car and covering the failure completely under warranty. Another positive: nobody was injured in the incident, save for the car. I would argue that C7s really should have been wearing a helmet on the drag strip, but that’s another conversation for another time.