photos by: the author
To say there’s been “some hype” around the new C7 Z06 finally rolling off the Bowling Green assembly line and onto haulers for eagerly awaiting customers is an understatement. Everyone’s seen the numbers, heard the stories, and wondered if it was all true. Well, we got our first chance to see one on the dyno, and can tell you emphatically that it’s all true!
After swapping a BTR cam into Blue Magic, our 5.3L-equipped ’04 Silverado at local horsepower factory Antivenom Performance, we hung out with owner Greg Lovell awaiting the arrival of Kevin Helmintoller and his brand new C7 Z06 he’d picked up at the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky 48 hours prior.
If the name sounds familiar, Kevin lost his built C5Z that was on display at the National Corvette Museum to the infamous sinkhole that opened up beneath the facility a year ago. His was the last car to be removed from the earthen abyss that swallowed so many other Corvettes, and will be the only car that’s not fully rebuilt/restored.
To fill the empty spot in his heart (and garage) Kevin ordered a brand new C7 Z06 with the Z07 package as soon as the dealerships could take orders. He also checked off the museum delivery option too, so his Z06 would be as virgin as possible when he took possession on Friday, December 12th of this year 2014.
Two days later, he pulled the factory fresh land missile onto the Dynojet chassis dyno at Antivenom Performance in Seffner, Florida.
So far the few Z06s that have made it onto dyno rollers have been putting out around 570 horsepower. We tested the car just after it had arrived and was still pretty hot from its highway sprint, that run measuring 565 horsepower. After letting it cool down for a bit, we made another hit, this time measuring an uncorrected 581 horsepower.
That’s more than what stock C6 ZR1s were measured at, with a much smaller blower (1.7L to the C6 ZR1’s 2.3L unit). Not only does this make the new Corvette champion the top performer in factory Corvette performance history, it also has us salivating at what the inevitable C7 ZR1 will come out of the stable with!
Stay tuned as we’re going to see how well the new LT4 responds to basic bolt-on performance items and the obligatory performance computer tuning.
Patrick Hill has grown up around the automotive aftermarket, and carries a lifelong passion for performance, racing and automotive nostalgia that spans from the Tri-Five era to the current modern performance market.