Not too many years ago, even purists began to wonder: What was up with their beloved Chevrolet Corvette Stingray? The styling was off, a conspicuous look as though General Motors’ designers had run out of time. Was the Corvette’s label as “America’s Sports Car” no longer valid? Could the many-time Indianapolis 500 pace car have become an also-ran?
Annual sales were down for several years, dipping below 20,000 for the first time in 2018. Ah, but just in time, the mid-engine C8 arrived in 2020 after years of planning. The brand was revived. Automotive industry honors flowed.
And now it’s happening again with the recently announced, much-ballyhooed and coming-to-a-dealership soon 2023 Corvette Z06.
Like its recent sibling star, power reigns again. The new 5.5-liter V8 Z06 will produce 670 horsepower at 8,400 rpm and 460 pound-feet of torque at 6,300 rpm. It will advance with an eight-speed automatic transmission.
All Corvettes, regardless of their level of beauty, have a presence unlike any other sports car. The new Z06 will extend the car’s singularity. It’s wider than the C8 Corvette Stingray, 79.7 inches overall with front and rear track widths of 66.3 and 66.1 inches. The new beast is 184.6 inches long (wheelbase 107.2 inches) and 48.6 inches tall. Standard are 20-inch front and 21-inch rear forged aluminum wheels. Lighter and stronger carbon-fiber rollers are optional.
Manufacturers using art terms while promoting their vehicles must expect a lot. The Z06 is touted as “Sculpted to Soar.” Besides its increased engine statistics, the vehicles’ craftspeople are back in the spotlight, but not for dubious reasons.
New are replaceable spoiler wickerbills, rear brake cooling ducts, a removable front fascia panel and front underwing stall gurneys to increase downforce. Artwork? No doubt.
Trims are the 1LZ, 2LZ and 3LZ coupes. Preferences range from a removable roof panel to eight interior color options. And there are rear parking assist and a rear vision camera to accompany carbon fiber trim on the steering wheel and paddle shifters.
Standard features include a digital gauge cluster, heads-up display, heated and ventilated seats and wireless phone charging. The 8.0 touchscreen infotainment system is generous with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and a Wi-Fi hotspot. A Performance Data Recorder is also standard, as is a 10-speaker Bose stereo system. A 14-speaker Bose setup is optional.
The new Corvette also has a surprisingly useful trunk. Two golf bags will fit, just in case there’s a country club near the racetrack of your choice or a layout that arises unexpectedly while the Z06 has taken over maneuvering along a country road. The choices are yours beginning in June.
Facts & figures
Acceleration: 0-60 mph, 2.6 seconds (estimate)
Fuel economy: Unavailable
Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price: $90,000 (estimate)
Manufacturer’s website: chevrolet.com
Price As Tested: Unavailable
Warranty: Bumper to bumper, 3 years/36,000 miles; Powertrain, 5 years/60,000 miles; Corrosion,
6 years/100,00 miles; Roadside Assistance, 6 years/100,000 miles; Complimentary Maintenance/2 years