The C7.R's naturally aspirated engine is gone.
Hot on the heels of yesterday’s spy shots of the new C8.R, the mid-engined Corvette race car is back to play its turbo tune. Indeed, crank up the volume and you can definitely hear the soundtrack provided by a turbocharged engine while the car is undergoing installation laps at the track. It means the naturally aspirated 5.5-litre V8 of the outgoing C7.R will be retired to make room for a new engine benefitting from forced induction.
No word about what sort of transmission is responsible for channelling power to the wheels, but at the 0:15 mark, we can hear a sweet-sounding downshift. For what it’s worth, the road car is said to boast a dual-clutch transaxle gearbox engineered by Tremec and set to replace the standard manual transmission, according to Autocar.
We’ve gotten used to the idea of a turbocharged Corvette following a multitude of reports about Chevy developing a mid-engined C8. The rumour mill indicates the road-going car will have a twin-turbo 4.2-litre V8 engine with 650 bhp and a beefier twin-turbo 5.5-litre V8 rated at 850 bhp. If what gossipers are saying is true, there’s also going to be a natural aspirated 6.2-litre V8 with close to 500 bhp.
Chevy might also be planning a hybrid Corvette C8 to arrive later in the life cycle with a combined output of nearly 1,000 bhp if we were to believe the same report coming from the magazine.
Although there are a plethora of uncertainties at this point regarding both the road and race cars, one thing is for sure: the mid-engined Corvette is as real as it gets. We might finally see the street-legal model in January 2019 during the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. There’s a good chance we won’t have to wait much longer after that to check out its track-only counterpart.