The 2023 Chevrolet Corvette Z06's makeup may be one of the worst-kept secrets in automotive history. We figured out years ago that it'd have a howling V8 with overhead cams and a flat-plane crankshaft, and not to mention a serious rear wing. All that remained was to hear, see, and drive the car, and we're now past the second phase of that, as a nearly undisguised prototype has been photographed outside the Nürburgring.
These photos depict the first Z06 mule we've seen without the sort of baggy, body-obscuring camouflage it wore while being seemingly benchmarked against the Porsche 911 GT2 RS. They were snapped as the car circled a roundabout, so we now have a perfect, nearly 360-degree picture of the new Z06.
Up front are a sizable splitter and big canards (or dive planes), leading to a redesigned front bumper which sits dual heat exchangers, one on each side. Larger, more sharply angled rear fender intakes are obvious from the side, as are more aggressive skirts and, behind five-spoke wheels, colossal brakes both front and rear. The front's rotors appear to be possibly drilled, though the photos aren't quite detailed enough to conclude they are.
Out back is a deeply dished rear wing atop a restyled rear bumper, the most significant change to which is the return of the center-exit quad exhaust used on the C5 through C7. The sound that comes therefrom will be, as Chevy has revealed, remarkably close to that of a Ferrari 458—whether you consider it a supercar or not, it'll sure sound like one.
General Motors has confirmed the Corvette Z06 will debut this autumn and hit the market as a 2023 model, so it won't be in customers' hands for more than a year. By then, we may have a better grasp of C8 models yet to come, which have been rumored to include a Grand Sport, all-wheel-drive E-Ray hybrid, twin-turbo ZR1, and even hyper-Vette called the Zora.
Whatever the case, the Z06 has whet our appetites for the future of the Corvette, and it just might set the standard for supercars the world over.
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