2009 Chevrolet Corvette Photo
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Brakes discs are huge carbon-ceramic units that are clamped on by six-piston Brembo calipers in front and four-piston units in the rear. The rear discs are as large as the fronts found on other supercars. Metal discs used on the Z06 were provided for comparison on a table-top display, and were considerably heavier. Of course, lighter rotating and unsprung mass is critical for improving every aspect of performance.

The Corvette development team took weight out of the ZR1 wherever possible. Carbon fiber is used extensively, even on panels exposed to strong UV light like the roof and roof pillars. (Apparently, UV breaks down the bonding elements within carbon fiber, rendering the material brittle in as little as five years.) GM's solution is a special clearcoat that costs upwards of $2000/gallon.

According to the Harlan Charles, Corvette Product Planner, the ZR1 will be offered in seven colors and offer two wheels (one chrome). The standard ZR1 will feature interior equipment similar to a standard Z06, and there will be one major option package similar to the 4LT that includes the fully leather-wrapped interior. If pricing of 2008 models provides any indication, this RPO will cost around $8,000. Charles also noted that because there is only one set of production tools for the carbon-fiber body panels, yearly production is not expected to exceed 2000 units.

Just as the Z06 used the color red to highlight key components, the ZR1 uses blue accents on the LS9 and on the model's logo. Perhaps this is a tip of the hat to the Blue Devil moniker that surfaced early? GM would neither confirm nor deny.

Regardless, this is what a $100,000 Corvette looks like. Wagoner should be quite happy, nod to his past or not.

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