UPDATE A reader writes, Great article on the new ZR1! It looks like we are going to once again have an American supercar that competes with and surpasses some of the most amazing sports cars in the world, at a substantially lower price. It just goes to show you that when American automakers put the effort into it they actually can be competitive with European and Japanese manufacturers. Now all they have to do is figure out how to translate that sort of effort and success from the Corvette program into their everyday models. If they could do that, then maybe people would stop equating “American car” with “pile of defective junk,” and the big three would actually be able to make money. Kevin McFerrin
Chevrolet Corvette ZR1
12/20/07 This is one mean machine.
General Motors Corp. on Wednesday took the wraps off the much-anticipated 2009 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 -- the fastest production vehicle ever built by GM.
The new 'Vette will be showcased next month at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. It won't come cheap when it hits the market next year: The price tag is expected to be just under $100,000.
The 620-horsepower limited-edition Corvette is based on the performance Z06 Corvette, but better. Under its carbon fiber hood is GM's new LS9 engine -- eight cylinders of pure supercharged power.
The 6.2-liter small block uses a sixth-generation Eaton supercharger to crank out 585 pound-feet of torque. That torque helps the ZR1 fly from zero to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds.
Tom Stephens, GM North America vice president of powertrain, said the ZR1 accelerates more like a motorcycle than a car.
"This was the first time I have driven a car that gives me that sport motorcycle feeling," said Stephens. "You can't help but get out of it with a smile on your face." See our full report
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