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      06-27-2007, 10:55 AM   #6
Carnage
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Looks like the M3 better be targeting the C6 Corvette...

There were several surprises in this class—and the biggest was the astonishing performance of the base Corvette equipped with the Z51 package. The Vette was a returnee to VIR because we experienced a data problem with its quickest lap last year. We had to publish its second-quickest lap time (3:09.3) then, which we didn’t think represented the car’s capabilities.

Those suspicions were dead on, because this time around the Z51 blazed around the course in 3:03.6, nearly six seconds quicker. That time bests those of the Audi R8 and Porsche 911 Turbo, cars that cost more than twice as much as the Z51’s base price. As we’ve learned, Corvettes are lap dogs when it comes to obeying commands from the helm, and they have wonderful fade-free brakes and benefit from a smooth 400-hp V-8. But they initially feel spooky, partly because the steering is a bit numb. Once a driver learns to trust the Vette’s chassis, the Chevy can embarrass almost any other car on the track, even if it isn’t as confidence inspiring as a Porsche 911.

With the 2008 C6 having an additional 30-36HP and 24-28 lbs. of TQ, they could be seeing times of 3 minutes flat. For reference the Z06 was the only car to break 3 minutes with a time of 2:58.2
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