Gone but not forgotten
[NEWS] 2001 Chevrolet Corvette Z06
From Popular Mechanics Automotive:
2001 Chevrolet Corvette Z06
Dave Hill, vehicle line executive and Corvette chief engineer, calls his new Z06 model “a car for the extreme driving enthusiast.” Indeed, with a power-to-weight ratio of 8.13 pounds/horsepower the Corvette Z06 is the quickest, fastest Corvette ever built. Yes, bar none. According to Chevrolet, the Z06 goes from 0 to 60 mph in a lightning 4.0 seconds and rips through the quarter-mile in 12.60 seconds at 115 mph.
Based on the former hardtop model, Chevrolet claims, it’s not only the quickest, but also the best-handling production Corvette of all time.
Providing the grunt for all this performance is a new version of the venerable small-block engine, the LS6, which delivers 385 hp at 6000 rpm and 385 ft.-lb. of torque at 4800 rpm. The LS6 is the only engine available for the Z06, and is not offered on other Corvette models.
The LS6 designation is another expression of appreciation for the accomplishments of earlier Corvette engineers. In 1971, Duntov’s team created a special 425-hp (gross) big-block V8 for the Corvette, again with racing in mind. It was second only to the legendary L88 racing engine that was available from 1967 to 1969. Despite the fact that only 188 Corvettes were sold with the LS6 engine, it occupies a special niche in Corvette legend.
The new LS6 is based on the 5.7-liter LS1, the standard Corvette engine. Its aluminum block has been modified for better management of crankcase pressures and speedier return of oil from the upper part of the engine. The engine also has a more aggressive camshaft profile to take full advantage of the additional air that Corvette’s new intake manifold provides. New high-compression cylinder heads (10.5:1 versus 10.1:1 on the LS1) have improved porting to get this larger volume of air smoothly into the combustion chambers. The new heads are equipped with stronger valve springs and larger fuel injectors. Exhaust gas backpressure is relieved by the Z06’s less restrictive titanium exhaust system, which is 50 percent lighter than the stainless steel system it replaces.
Unique to the Z06 is a new six-speed transmission (M12) with more aggressive gearing to increase torque multiplication in almost every gear and for more rapid acceleration.
The Z06 also features a suspension calibration that’s all its own, designated FE4. It features a larger front stabilizer bar, stiffer rear leaf spring and revised camber settings, all calibrated with a bias toward control during high-speed operation.
Special Z06 specific forged-aluminum wheels are an inch wider front and rear than those used on the coupe and convertible.
New wider and stickier Goodyear Eagle SC Supercar tires were created for the Z06. They feature reduced mass, an asymmetric tread design for better grip, a more compliant sidewall and better wear.
The Z06’s FE4 suspension and its new wheels and tires allow the car to take full advantage of the additional power available. During development testing, Corvette engineers were able to generate racetrack speeds that improved Z06 performance by an average of 3 to 4 seconds per lap over last year’s hardtop model on typical 2-mile closed-circuit road courses. This we were able to test for ourselves at the Mid-Ohio racecourse in Lexington, where we had the chance to drive a standard coupe and a Z06, back to back.
Engineers were aggressive in reducing mass. The Z06 has a thinner windshield and rear backlite compared to a standard Vette. The Z06 option list is very short to maintain weight-reduction gains. All told, the Z06 is the lightest Corvette at just 3133 pounds. Add to the performance the additional panache of its own front end, functional side scoops, special emblems and upholstery, and the Z06 comes up as a very special version of a very special car. Somewhere, Zora Arkus-Duntov is smiling. —Joe Oldham
By Ken in forum C6 Z06 Discussion
Last Post: 01-11-05, 04:49 PM
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