Corvette Z06 Establishes Performance Benchmark
New content enables increased performance at Germany’s famed testing ground
DETROIT – Corvette engineers provided another exclusive peek inside the extensive testing that is instrumental in creating one of the world’s highest performing cars. During Corvette’s recent return to the world’s most-demanding testing ground – Germany’s famed Nürburgring – the Z06 model, as detailed on video, recorded a lap time of 7:22.68.
The Z06 is the lightest and most balanced Corvette model, positioned below the range-topping ZR1 supercar model. The 2012 Corvette Z06 model shown includes the Z07 chassis package, featuring new optional Michelin® Pilot® Sport Cup Zero Pressure tires, Brembo carbon ceramic brakes, Performance Traction Management and Magnetic Selective Ride Control, as well as carbon fiber components (hood, front splitter and rockers) and aerodynamic improvements. All of those features are regular production options for the 2012 Corvette Z06, and substantial enablers for the car’s elevated performance level.
The lap time is 20 seconds faster than the previous-best Z06 lap time, recorded in 2005, which was recorded from a standing start rather than the generally accepted rolling start technique now used. The Z06 lap time is only 3 seconds behind the fastest Corvette lap time ever, the 2012 Corvette ZR1.
While lap times at the Nürburgring Nordschliefe (”north loop”) are unofficial, these times are a frequent, if informal, benchmark for some of the world’s highest-performing cars. The recent Corvette Z06 performance there is notable in that few, if any, production models in the sub-$100,000 range have recorded such a strong lap time.
“There’s a lot of legend and speculation about Nürburgring lap times, so we wanted to provide sports car fans with a video look inside one complete lap in the new Z06,” said Tadge Juechter, Corvette vehicle line director and chief engineer. “This is just one of a multitude of ways we test, but there’s nothing like the Nürburgring in terms of severity, speed and notoriety around the world. In this particular test in Germany, we were validating new content for 2012, doing many days’ worth of tuning and development work. As a small part of that effort, we had a brief opportunity for Jim Mero to record lap times with a clear track. We ran three of those complete and continuous laps, two in the ZR1 and one in the Z06, captured by on-board videos.”
Measuring 12.9 miles (20.8 km) and including some 154 turns, the Nürburgring’s Nordschleife is widely considered the world’s most-demanding course. The test car was driven by Corvette engineer Jim Mero and was a full production model with no performance modifications.
Corvette’s improved performance for 2012 begins with the new, optional Michelin® Pilot® Sport Cup Zero Pressure tires, which are available on the two highest-performing models, the lightweight, 505-hp (377 kW) Z06 and the maximum-performance, 638-hp (476 kW) supercharged ZR1. They are competition-oriented tires, optimized for warm, dry conditions to increase cornering and handling capability.
When combined with the Corvette’s exclusive Performance Traction Management (PTM) technology – which manages torque delivery for maximum performance – the tires set new benchmarks for Corvette performance. Engineers estimate an 8-percent gain in maximum lateral acceleration, to more than 1.1g, and improved braking distance.
Founded in Detroit in 1911, Chevrolet celebrates its centennial as a global automotive brand with annual sales of about 4.25 million vehicles in more than 140 countries. Chevrolet provides consumers with fuel-efficient, safe and reliable vehicles that deliver high quality, expressive design, spirited performance and value. The Chevrolet portfolio includes iconic performance cars such as Corvette and Camaro; dependable, long-lasting pickups and SUVs such as Silverado and Suburban; and award-winning passenger cars and crossovers such as Spark, Cruze, Malibu, Equinox and Traverse. Chevrolet also offers “gas-friendly to gas-free” solutions including Cruze Eco and Volt. Cruze Eco offers 42 mpg highway while Volt offers 35 miles of electric, gasoline-free driving and an additional 344 miles of extended range. Most new Chevrolet models offer OnStar safety, security and convenience technologies including OnStar Hands-Free Calling, Automatic Crash Response and Stolen Vehicle Slowdown. More information regarding Chevrolet models can be found at www.chevrolet.com.
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