Yup, it’s that time again; the next installment of, “we’ve heard all about the next ZR1, and it goes a little something like this…” However, thanks to a recent oversight or accidental discovery (however you want to look at it), the C7 ZR1 is said to be powered by a naturally-aspirated 6.2L DOHC V8.
Clearly a nod towards the C4 version that packed a 5.7L DOHC V8, the C7 variant will also use the RPO code, LT5.
Obviously nothing is official, nor would we take it as anything as the gospel but this is merely the latest update which could be a purposeful fluke that General Motors themselves “leaked” to continue to throw us auto journalists off and send us in the opposite direction, chasing our proverbial tails.
That’s of course, according to a report recently leaked to GM Authority, per Sean Szymkowski:
“General Motors is dusting off a very familiar engine code in the near future. First posted to Reddit, internal GM documents have revealed the LT5 V8 engine is returning, and it’s coming for the 2018 model year.
Specifically, it will be a 6.2-liter LT5 DOHC V8 engine, as coded in a table in the document of “Passenger Car Engines For GMNA.” At the very end of the table, there it sits: “ENGINE GAS CYL, 6.2L, SIDI, DOHC, VVT, ALUM, GM,” with the book code “Y”. In GM speak, that means it will be exclusively used in the 2018 Corvette.
There has only been one other DOHC V8 engine in the Corvette’s history, and it was the C4 Corvette ZR-1. It’s quite likely the Corvette team and General Motors will reintroduce a modern LT5 V8 engine when the 2018 C7 Corvette ZR1 decides it’s ready to show face.
Furthermore, the 6.2-liter LT1 V8 and 6.2-liter LT4 supercharged V8 engine are both still listed in the 2018 engine document. From that, we can gather the LT5 V8 will not replace either of those engines, but instead be reserved for something new altogether.
However, the table makes no mention of forced induction.
If the 2018 C7 Corvette ZR1 is going to be the most powerful Corvette we’ve seen, it will have to outdo the 650 hp produced from the 6.2-liter LT4 supercharged V8 engine. It’s hard to imagine GM working some wizardry to surpass 650 hp without superchargers or turbos.
If we move past the Corvette ZR1, the next logical option would be the all-but-confirmed mid-engine Corvette. Of course, all we can do is speculate on such a car, but a 6.2-liter LT5 V8 engine seems like a good starting point for what could be a revolutionary Corvette.
We don’t know where exactly this reborn LT5 V8 engine will end up, but it’s coming to a Corvette near you very, very soon.”
With all of that being said, like Sean mentioned, you also have to keep in mind that the ZR1 will always be throned the “King of the Hill,” so if it’s going to have a naturally-aspirated DOHC 6.2L engine, then it better make well north of the current C7Z’s 650 hp. Also keep in mind that the main reason that General Motors has elected to stick with a traditional OHV V8 in the first place, is due to cost, weight and its compact dimensions. All of that will be going out the window if this turns out to be more than just a rumor.
Otherwise, Corvette shoppers will just be sticking with what they already know. We’ll just have to see, won’t we?
Rick Seitz is the owner and founder of GMEFI Magazine, and has a true love and passion for all vehicles. When he isn’t tuning, testing, or competing with the brand’s current crop of project vehicles, he’s busy tinkering and planning the next modifications for his own cars.