There's a new Corvette in town, in the form of the 2023 Corvette Z06 unveiled last month. So, it was only natural that a racing version would soon follow. That competition variant has now arrived in the form of the Corvette Z06 GT3.R, which will make its track debut in 2022. A privateer version will be available for purchase in 2024.
Picking up where the racing version of the regular C8, the C8.R, left off, the Z06 GT3.R will be seen in far more venues around the world. The car is built to FIA GT3 spec, allowing automakers to build a single race car that competes in both IMSA and WEC endurance series.
Chevrolet says that the C8.R laid the groundwork for powertrain and aero strategies that will continue on Z06 GT3.R. Its aluminum chassis and aero bits will carry over, as will its naturally aspirated 5.5-liter flat-plane crank V8. Output remains undisclosed, with Chevy only saying that for IMSA, output will be slightly decreased from its predecessor's 500 horsepower and 480 pound-feet of torque, as per series rules. Essentially, it's a rebrand of the race car, now that the road-going Z06 is out.
You may notice, however, that the production Z06 also has a 5.5-liter flat-plane crank V8 that makes 670 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque. It's not the only race car to make less power than its production counterpart as road car outputs reach ridiculous heights. Chevy says that makes the Z06 GT3.R "the closest link yet between the production Z06 and racing for Chevrolet’s flagship performance vehicle." Well, perhaps excluding the original 1963 Z06.
The fact that the Corvette will now have factory backing in the World Endurance Championships means that we will see America's supercar on such historic circuits as Monza, Fuji, Spa-Francorchamps and, of course, Sarthe when it returns to the 24 Hours of Le Mans. It's the first time Corvette Racing will simultaneously tackle multiple endurance championships.
“This is the most ambitious schedule that Corvette Racing has faced in its nearly 25 years of competition,” said Jim Campbell, Chevy's U.S. VP of Performance and Motorsports. “It will be an honor to race in both the IMSA and WEC series at some of the best tracks in the world.”
Chevy will sell Corvette Z06 GT3.R race cars to customers in the 2024 racing season but details aren't known yet. Details on pricing and support packages will be available as we get closer to that date.
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