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This Corvette ZR1 Prototype Sounds Like It Has the Z06’s V-8

The long-awaited Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 will debut this summer, but you can hear its high-horsepower V-8 engine running right now. Photos and a video were recently posted in the C8 Corvette Owners (and Friends) Facebook group, and we have them here courtesy of the person who originally shared them.

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen ZR1 prototypes, but it’s perhaps the clearest view we’ve had so far at the rear of the car. One prototype remains under a cover, but the other two are dressed only in a thin camo wrap. Different rear wings (one of which looks adjustable) suggest we’re looking at cars with and without a track package, though it’s possible Chevrolet is simply testing a range of wings for production or motorsport use. But of greater interest here is the spy video catching the big-winged car idling.

 

It sure sounds like the 5.5-liter DOHC V-8 used in the Corvette Z06, and there’s strong evidence to back that up besides the exhaust note. Rumors have long persisted about the new ZR1 getting a twin-turbocharged version of the Z06’s engine, and last October, a listing for a turbocharged 5.5-liter V-8 called LT7 leaked out in the General Motors parts catalog. No such engine currently exists within GM, at least publicly, so the logical conclusion is that it’s destined for the ZR1. However, there’s a bit more to the mystery than that.

While it seems likely the 5.5-liter engine will be used, other rumors suggest the Stingray’s 6.2-liter V-8 will be turbocharged for ZR1 duty. The aforementioned engine leak mentioned Active Fuel Management (AFM)—a feature on the 6.2 but not the 5.5. A member of the Mid-Engine Corvette Forum stated the AFM mention was an error, but that could also mean the whole listing was an error. Yet another theory proposes the 5.5-liter engine will use a cross-plane crankshaft versus the flat-plane crank found within the Z06. That could bring AFM back into play, and a cross-plane design might be better for turbocharging.

2025 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 Spy Photo

Point being, Chevrolet hasn’t confirmed anything save for the ZR1’s debut happening this summer. Prevailing theories point to a cross-plane, twin-turbocharged version of the DOHC 5.5-liter V-8 being used, generating over 800 horsepower. All will be revealed later this year, but in the meantime, listen to the video and share your theories. 5.5? 6.2? Fusion turbo regigulator built by aliens on Nova Centauri? Let us know in the comments.

#Corvette #ZR1 #Prototype #Sounds #Z06s

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