The Best Vettes Yet!
by: Bob Wallace - VETTE Magazine

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Copyright VETTE Magazine  ~  Used With Permission

There's a new Corvette heading our way for 2001 and it may just be the best and baddest Vette ever offered. It's called Z06, a model designation that harkens back to 1963 and RPO Z06, which was essentially a ready-to-race factory option. The new Z06 model is based on the Fixed Roof Coupe and, instead of being a stripped down racer, is a fully decked out Corvette with race track capabilities that were unheard of 28 years ago.

The heart of the new Z06 is a new, 385 horsepower variant of the 5.7L LS1, all aluminum small-block. A beefed up, wide ratio version of the six-speed gearbox is the only transmission available. There's also a new clutch that is both stronger and has less pedal effort than the standard unit. The suspension features a stiffer rear spring, larger diameter front stabilizer bar, and revised alignment settings, all engineered for optimal handling capabilities. Complimenting the new chassis setup are new 17 x 9.5 front and 18 x 10.5 rear wheels, shod with exclusive new Goodyear Eagle F1 SC tires, 265/40ZR-17s for the front, and 295/35ZR-18s at the rear.

The result is a C5 that accelerates from 0-60 in 4 seconds flat, runs the quarter in 12.6 seconds, and pulls slightly over 1.0 Gs on a skidpad--right off the showroom floor! While the Z06's 385 horsepower rating is not quite as high as the legendary L-88s or the so-called "King of the Hill" ZR-1 (405 hp), it weighs roughly 400 pounds less than a ZR-1 offering up a substantially better power to weight ratio (8.13 lbs/hp for the Z06 vs. 8.73 lbs/hp for a ZR-1). Without a doubt, the new Z06 is the quickest and best handling production Corvette ever. Best of all, it's a regular production model, not a limited edition racer special. Long live the new King of the Hill Corvette!

Bob Wallace
Editor - VETTE Magazine