These days, seeing a C8 Chevrolet Corvette in heavy camouflage probably means you're looking at something really special. We already have the Stingray, the Z06, and the electrified all-wheel-drive E-Ray, so there aren't many monikers left in Chevrolet's wheelhouse. Next up should be the ZR1, and that's what we think we're looking at here.
For the record, this isn't our first brush with a potential C8 ZR1, but this could be our first example of something in final production form. There's certainly no mistaking the shape of the Corvette under those heavy black covers, and though we can't identify much in the way of detail, it looks like there's a sizeable splitter on the front fascia. Is it bigger than what you get on the Z06?
Gallery: Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 Spy Photos
It's hard to tell, but it's absolutely impossible to miss those gargantuan rear tires. We tried zooming in to look for tire sizes on the sidewall, but the photos just aren't clear enough. The Z06 wears 345-series rubber on the back, and these are every bit as wide if not wider. Could the ZR1 get a 355-series tire at the rear? If reports about the engine are true, it could certainly use every inch of available traction. That's because the ZR1 is expected to use a twin-turbocharged version of the 5.5-liter V8 from the Z06, which already makes 670 horsepower without any forced induction. A new ZR1 with 850 hp is certainly possible.
We spent considerable time looking over these images, and there's little else to report as far as ZR1-specific cues. The wing is Z06 spec, and the rear fascia with the center-exit exhaust is also straight from the Z06. Of course, previous-gen ZR1s haven't differed significantly in the style department, so there's no reason to expect the C8 model to rock that boat. Perhaps of greater significance are the cars spotted with this prototype, specifically, the Porsche 911 GT2 RS. On a race track, it's among the fastest road-legal cars in the world. If it's a benchmark for the ZR1, we should be in for quite a ride.
Way back in 2020, we came upon a report allegedly outlining the entire C8 generation through 2025. It's proven pretty darned accurate so far, nailing the launch for the Z06 and E-Ray and that report lists the ZR1 coming in 2024. We suspect it will be worth the wait.