- Chevrolet has released more details about the next-generation C8.R race car.
- It will be powered by an all-new naturally aspirated double overhead camshaft 5.5-liter V-8 with a flat-plane crankshaft.
- The C8.R will makes its first on-track appearance at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona in January 2020.
Tired of C8 Corvette news yet? We hope not. Things are just getting started. Ahead of the decorated C7.R’s final battle at this weekend’s Petit Le Mans 10-hour endurance race at Road Atlanta, Chevy provided more details on the successor Corvette C8.R race car.
Not since the C4-generation Corvette ZR1 have multiple camshafts controlled the valves of a Corvette engine. Until now! Chevrolet has confirmed that the double-overhead-camshaft configuration will return to the C8.R. More important, a flat-plane crankshaft now lives in the block to allow the naturally aspirated 5.5-liter V-8 to rev to the moon. Chevy won’t claim a redline but states it will be limited by the Balance of Performance, or IMSA’s fun governing laws to keep things equal.
Even when inhaling atmospheric pressure through straws, Chevy claims the new engine will make 500 horsepower and 480 lb-ft of torque. Chevrolet representatives won’t say how much it makes when it’s uncorked, but we’re betting it could easily exceed 600 horsepower. A six-speed sequential gearbox developed by Xtrac will manage the shifts.
For years, Corvette race cars have bellowed the most distinguishable patriotic soundtracks from their tailpipes. If there’s any concern about the C8.R losing some of its rumble, there shouldn’t be. There’s maybe a yardstick’s worth of unrestricted tailpipe hanging off the exhaust manifolds. We’ll buy into Chevrolet’s claim that new engine will have a distinct Corvette sound.
Naturally, Corvette officials deflected any questions regarding the future of the 5.5-liter in production cars. But if any of the many leaks regarding higher-performance variants of the all-new Corvette provide a glimpse into Chevrolet’s crystal ball, we believe there’s a future for this engine in the production car. For now, we’ll have to wait for the C8.R’s debut at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona.