In the seven decades since the C1 Corvette, the new E-Ray is the first one to go into production with some form of battery power under the hood. It's also the first Corvette with all-wheel drive, too. The hybrid 'Vette pairs a V8 engine with an electric motor and a single battery pack – but this is no fuel-sipper.
Powered by the same 6.2-litre V8 found in the standard Corvette Stingray and helped by a single electric motor, Chevy says the new E-Ray is the "quickest" production Corvette ever to roll off the factory floor in Bowling Green. It only takes 2.5 seconds for it to hit 60 miles per hour, which means the E-Ray packs even more of a punch than the iconically quick Z06.
But how do the two sports cars really stack up beyond that?
Engine And Horsepower
The 1.9-kilowatt-hour battery pack and permanent magnetic drive electric motor produce 160 bhp and 125 pound-feet of torque. Combine that with the might of that V8 and it brings the total system output to 655 bhp and 595 lb-ft. The instant torque available via the electric motor and the extra grip from the standard all-wheel-drive system helps give the E-Ray its impressive 0-60 time.
On top of that, the E-Ray has one key feature that the Z06 definitely doesn’t. Tick the drive mode selector over to "Stealth" mode and the Corvette E-Ray can drive exclusively on battery power at speeds of up to 45 miles per hour.
While the Z06 isn’t as stealthy or technically even as quick as the E-Ray – getting to 60 in 2.6 seconds – the supercharged C8 actually packs more horsepower and torque. The unique flat-plane-crank 5.5-litre V8 revs to a ridiculous 8,600 RPM and comes with a full racing-style dry-sump oiling system.
|Corvette E-Ray||Hybrid 6.2L V8||655 BHP / 595 LB-FT||2.5 Seconds|
|Corvette Z06||Supercharged 5.5L V8||670 BHP / 460 LB-FT||2.6 Seconds|
While the E-Ray may be a tick quicker, in terms of overall performance, the Z06 still gets the nod. Better available tyres, a more-responsive suspension setup, and a lighter curb weight make the Z06 the one to get for track days. But the E-Ray, surprisingly, isn’t that far off.
The E-Ray is 90 millimetres (3.6 inches) wider than the standard C8, just like the Z06. The E-Ray’s 400 mm (15.7-in) front and 390 mm (5.4-inch) rear carbon ceramic Brembo brakes are the same ones you get on the Z06 – except you have to pay extra there, as opposed to the E-Ray, which offers them standard.
Magnetic Ride Control 4.0 also comes standard on the E-Ray, which should give it excellent handling – even with a heftier 1,712 kilogram (3,774-pound) curb weight. And for additional grip, Chevrolet offers Michelin Pilot Sport 4S summer tyres as an option rather than the standard Michelin Pilot Sport all seasons. And in a quarter mile, believe it or not, the E-Ray beats the Z06 by a smidge.
|Corvette E-Ray||1,712 KG / 3,774 LBS||Carbon Ceramic (standard)||Michelin Pilot Sport / Michelin Pilot Sport 4S||10.5 Seconds @ 130.0 MPH|
|Corvette Z06||1,558 KG / 3,434 LBS||Carbon Ceramic (optional)||Michelin Pilot Sport 4S / Michelin Sport Cup 2 R||10.6 Seconds @ 131.6 MPH|
Not only do the E-Ray and Z06 match up closely in terms of performance, but the two sports cars are relatively comparable in price, too. You can get Chevy’s quickest Corvette for $104,295 for the coupe or $112,690 for the convertible. That's not including destination and handling fees, which haven't been announced by Chevy for the E-Ray. The Z06, meanwhile, starts at $105,300 for the coupe and $112,800 for the convertible, both before the $1,395 destination fee kicks in.
Options for the E-Ray include extra-cost colors like Accelerate Yellow and Rapid Blue, as well as wheel and tire options and even varying interior trims. Chevrolet will have more details on how much those extras cost closer to the E-Ray’s on-sale date. The Z06, meanwhile, can get pricey once you start adding on things like carbon ceramic brakes, wheels, and the pricey Z07 Performance package – an $8,995 option.
|Corvette E-Ray||$104,295 (Coupe) / $112,690 (Convertible)|
|Corvette Z06||$105,300 (Coupe) / $112,800 (Convertible)|