What comes next for the Corvette after Z06? You were probably thinking about the rumoured E-Ray hybrid, or the ZR1, or the bonkers Zora that could have more than 1,000 bhp. You probably weren't considering another version of the Z06, but that's exactly what we have. Of course, there's a bit more to it than that.
Say hello to the Chevrolet Corvette Z06 GT3.R, and yes, the R stands for racing. That means this particular 'Vette is decidedly not street legal, but it is one that the general public can buy. That's a big deal, because it's the first time Chevrolet has offered such a turn-key race car in wide availability for racing teams, be it professional or amateur. In short, if you want a hardcore Z06 to go racing, Chevy can set you up.
What exactly will you get? Think of it as a fusion of the C8.R race car and the street-going Z06. The GT3.R uses the C8.R's aluminium chassis, and it borrows some of the aerodynamic features. The dimensions are the same, and of course there's the 5.5-litre flat-plane-crank V8 behind the driver. Ironically, it won't be as powerful as the engine used in the street-friendly Z06, with Chevrolet reporting between 500 and 600 bhp for the GT3.R. That's due to regulations for GT3 racing, which the GT3.R is aimed at. However, it will be FIA compliant for numerous venues.
Gallery: Chevrolet Corvette Z06 GT3.R
"It’s an exciting time for Corvette – first with the reveal of the production Z06 and now confirming the Corvette Z06 GT3.R for customer racers," said Mark Stielow, Chevrolet's director of motorsports competition engineering. "The availability of the Z06 GT3.R will allow customer race teams the opportunity to campaign a Corvette that has benefited from Corvette Racing’s rich history."
Chevrolet doesn't mention a price for the Z06 GT3.R, but with the street-friendly Z06 starting somewhere under $100,000 (approx. £75,000), you're likely looking at an easy six-figure race car. As far as availability, it's slated to arrive for the 2024 racing season.