What is it?
It’s the fastest Corvette, the ZR1. About which a couple of noteworthy things: Chevrolet's own website lists its competitors as the Ferraris F430 and 599 GTB. And its sixth gear will both drag it along on idle, yet also take it to 205mph, providing worthwhile acceleration across any of 175 different miles per hour.
Unlike the erstwhile fastest current Corvette, the Z06, the ZR1 uses a 6.2- rather than a 7.0-litre 16-valve V8, but with a supercharger nestled between its banks. The addition of the blower plus some extra equipment means that, at 1528kg it's heavier than the Z06 despite having a carbonfibre roof, splitter and inner bonnet.
What’s it like?
Don't let the additional weight bother you: with 638bhp and 604lb ft the ZR1 could weigh as much as the moon and still shift. As it is, is has a 0-62mph time of 3.6sec, which it would itself better were it not for a 51:49 weight distribution that limits its traction compared to mid- or rear-engined supercars. Very few proper series production cars have the ZR1's kind of urge, or its Nascar-aping noise once the exhaust valves open.
ZR1s get magnetically-controlled dampers on their double-wishbone suspension, which retains carbonfibre leaf springs at the rear. The ride's generally composed, although the 335/25 section rear tyres make a racket. Shifting the suspension from 'tour' to 'sport' mode tightens body control to the detriment of a ride that runs out of ideas more quickly than a fast 911 or 599 but is far from poor.