2001 CHEVROLET CORVETTE Z06 Chevrolet launched its highest-performance Corvette yet in 2001, the Z06. Intended as a track car, the Z06 came with a hotter version of the 5.7 V8, dubbed LS6, making 385 horsepower and 385 pound-feet of torque, a 35-horse bump over the standard LS1-powered 2001 Chevrolet Corvette. It also came with revised suspension, bigger brakes, bigger wheels and tires, enhanced cooling and much more. Interestingly, Chevy elected not to give the Z06 a more distinctive look, so they’re hard to spot. They look very much like a standard Corvette, except that they’re always made from the Fixed Roof Coupe (FRC) and the big giveaway: the big brake cooling ducts just ahead of the rear wheel openings.
WHAT MADE A 2001 CHEVROLET CORVETTE Z06?
The Z06 wasn’t just a tarted-up Corvette with a big engine. The changes and enhancements ran deep. Of course, it started with the new 385-horse LS6 V8, 6-speed only, a thicker aluminum driveshaft, and Z06-specific wheels and tires. And they were big! The rear wheels were 10.5 inches wide X 18, the fenders had to be widened to make room. Front wheels were 9.5″ X 17″. Despite their size, they were actually lighter than the standard Corvette wheels. Front tires were Goodyear Eagle F1 SC tires in 265/40ZR-17, and the rears are 295/35ZR-18s. These are ZR-rated tires. There were bigger and better brakes all around with greatly enhanced cooling, including those cool vents just ahead of the rear fenders. Upgraded suspension, chassis stiffening and lightweighting, including a titanium exhaust system made for a very fast, very stiff car that weighed about 40 pounds less than the standard 2001 Chevrolet Corvette, not easy considering all the added heavy duty components. The result of all this magic? The 2001 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 could hit 60mph from a standstill in just 4.5 seconds, blindingly fast in 2001. It took down the quarter-mile in 13 seconds flat at 113 mph.
2001 CHEVROLET CORVETTE Z06 ENGINE – THE LS6
For Z06 duty, Chevrolet beefed up the LS1 with better flowing cylinder heads, new intake manifold, freer-flowing thinwall exhaust manifolds, a hotter cam, lighter valve gear, better valve springs, lighter stronger pistons, and special “windows” cast into the block’s internal bulkheads to help expel the air being pushed down by the pistons. The results of all this magic were 385 horsepower and 385 pound-feet of torque.