New C7 Corvette ZR1 Looks Even Better Than You Think

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C7 Corvette ZR1 Mockup

Chevy has been running camouflaged prototypes of the new ZR1 Corvette for a few months now. We have brought you all the spy shots, shown you the flared fenders, taller hood, and let you ogle the 747-sized rear wing. But frankly, we are tired of staring at the slabs of foam, cloth, and swirly camo. We want to see what this incredible beast looks like, so we called up one of our favorite render artists, gave him all the spy shots, and told him to spit out his closest approximation of what the new car will look like. And frankly, I have fallen in love.

The new ZR1 is now way more open, to help improve cooling. And the larger hood sees a bigger vent to reduce underhood pressure, allowing even more air to make its way across the radiator, and whatever other cooling arrays may be down there. I say “other cooling” because rumor has it that GM may dump the supercharger in favor of a twin-turbo setup for the new car. Personally, I am skeptical of a move to turbocharging, but GM could be using the new ZR1 as a test bed for new turbo tech and designs that could filter into other cars in the Chevy family. And the upcoming mid-engined “Zora” is slated to see turbocharging as well.

Regardless of the type of forced induction, expect horsepower to be well above the current Z06. Original rumors were saying 700 horsepower, but I would expect to see no less than 710. The new ZR1 needs to break records and barriers, and give GM a chance to take the title of most-powerful U.S. Production car from Dodge’s Hellcat family of machines. Why wouldn’t they take that crown if they are already targeting 700 ponies to start with?

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Beyond the new nose and motor, expect the new ZR1 to be a touch wider and lower than any other C7 Corvette, with every vent, intake, and cutout a bit deeper and larger. The skirts around the sides, front lip, and rear diffuser will also see dramatic size increases to improve downforce. This all ties into the giant wing. Chevy is chasing the Dodge Viper ACR form of thinking, and the new ZR1 should make more downforce than any Corvette before. Our render goes for a cleaner front end, but you would be a fool to think there won’t be a higher-aero version with nose canards and an even larger front splitter.

If this new ZR1 can beat or equal the Viper ACR’s 1,700 pounds of total downforce, while making even more horsepower, all those American track records may soon be marked with a Bowtie instead of a snake. I can’t wait.

If you want to see the real version of the new ZR1 (not just our vision of the car) it should be debuting at the Detroit Auto Show in January. If we can get more spy shots of the car, we may do an updated render with side profile and rear three-quarter shots. Keep your eyes here on Corvette Forum to make sure you don’t miss it.

Chime in with your thoughts on the forum. >>

Christian Moe contributes to many of Internet Brands' Auto blogs, including Corvette Forum, Club Lexus and Rennlist.

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