Chevrolet details Corvette C8.R engine

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Words: Nile Bijoux
11 Oct 2019

Chevrolet has released more details about its upcoming C8.R racer, this time surrounding its powerplant.

The new race car will use a mid-mounted, flat-plane crank 5.5-litre naturally aspirated V8, making 373kW and 651Nm, in accordance with IMSA rules.

As good as that sounds, get this. IMSA operates under the jurisdiction of the FIA, which says at least 300 copies of a race engine must be built for road use. That means we’ll almost certainly see it deployed in an upcoming C8 variant. The to-be-announced Z06 springs to mind, possibly with a slight power hike too.

The engine is bolted to an Xtrac six-speed sequential gearbox, which is smaller than before and allows for a new racing diffuser. As you might expect, the C8.R is lower and stiffer than the road-going Corvette, riding on 18-inch Pilot Sport GT race-spec tyres.

Interestingly, this is the first all-new race architecture for the Corvette since 1999 as the C7.R used quite a few C5 elements.

"It was important for us to develop the new race car alongside the production car, so that each product could properly take advantage of the new architecture," Corvette Chief Engineer, Ed Piatek told Motorsport.com.

The C8.R will complete some test laps this weekend at Petit Le Mans before its first official race at the 24 Hours of Daytona in January.

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