Chevrolet’s Chief Engineer and father of the Corvette was Zora Arkus-Duntov. His lasting impact on the automotive world brought many racing technologies into mass production. Most of his accomplishments are well known, but some have been hiding in plain sight. He built the CERV prototypes, the Corvette SS race car, the Stingray, Grand Sport and Z06. One more Corvette model is not often associated with him, and that is the ZR1. Most Corvette fans associate its origins with the ZR1 with the 1990-95 examples. Fast for their day, their name came from a high-performance package offered on the early C3.
Aimed at road racing, the original ZR1 was only offered from 1970-72, and it combined heavy duty suspension, big brakes, heavy duty cooling, and the high-output LT1 engine. Sales minimal because it could not be ordered with power windows, A/C, radio, or even hubcaps. Times have changed, but the ZR1 is still reserved for the fastest production Corvette.
Rumors of the C6 ZR1 were rolling in as soon as the Z06 was released in 2006. What could be better than a 500 horsepower naturally aspirated V8? It turns out that smaller displacement with a big supercharger is a recipe for 638 horsepower and 604 lb-ft of torque. Built in limited numbers from 2009 to 2013, they marked the Corvette’s transition from fiberglass into carbon fiber.
Designed to compete on the world’s toughest tracks, the blue prototype survived a fall into Middle Earth when it was swallowed by a sinkhole. Each example arrived with a six-speed manual transmission and a hole in the hood. A plexiglass cover shows off the engine for all to see. This example was ordered with the 3LZ luxury package. It includes Bose 7 speaker audio, telescoping column, cargo shade and heated seats. With a sticker price of almost $119,000, it’s your turn to experience one of America’s fastest cars. The original owner must have been scared because it was only driven 2,896 miles since new. If you like the idea of saving money, click on the link below and get ready for supercharged fun. As always, stay with us for the coolest cars in the world.