Chevrolet brings back the vaunted Z06 Corvette for 2006, replete with a 7.0L LS7 V-8 engine packing 505 hp. The 2006 Z06 coupe and Convertible are now available with a new electronically-controlled 6-speed Paddle Shift transmission with three modes: Drive, Sport, and Paddle Shift. Inside, there's a new, smaller-diameter steering wheel, an automatic passenger airbag switch, and XM Satellite Radio is included on models with the optional Bose audio system. Two new colors, Velocity Yellow and Monterey Red, join the exterior color palette while Titanium Gray becomes an interior choice, and Storm Gray is offered as a new convertible top color.
Fifty-three years ago, Chevrolet introduced the Corvette with an inline 6-cylinder engine. Two years later, in 1955, GM engineers inserted a 195-hp small-block V-8 between the shock towers and a performance legend was born. Today, the Corvette generates 400 hp and 400 lb.-ft. of torque from its standard 6.0L V-8 and routes this power to the rear wheels through a 6-speed manual transmission. Available in coupe or convertible body styles, a new 6-speed sequential manual transmission with automatic mode is also offered. (It's interesting to note that today's "base" version offers as much horsepower as the high-performance ZR-1, which was produced in limited numbers from 1990 to 1995 and was among the fastest cars of its time.)
Standard features include Xenon headlamps, speed-sensitive power steering, traction control, an oil life monitoring system, air filtration, keyless entry, a tilt steering column, a theft deterrent system, and a 6-way power driver's seat. Available options include a lower rear axle ratio, three wheel trim choices, power telescoping steering wheel, OnStar telematics, an improved Bose audio system with in-dash 6-disc CD changer, XM Satellite Radio, DVD-based navigation, a power-operated soft top, delivery at the National Corvette Museum, and the Magnetic Selective Ride Control (MSRC) suspension. MSRC features magneto-rheological dampers that can detect road surfaces and adjust damping rates in real time for optimal ride control in all driving situations. Standard safety amenities include dual-stage front airbags, side airbags (standard on convertible and optional on the coupe and Z06), a tire pressure monitoring system, Active Handling system, and traction control.
The Z06 coupe model receives power from a 7.0L V-8 producing 505 hp and 470 lb.-ft. of torque, enough power for a top speed very close to 200 mph. Z06 options include a Bose audio system with in-dash 6-disc CD changer, polished wheels, a telescoping steering wheel, heated seats, side air bags, a GPS navigation system, a universal home remote, and XM Satellite Radio.
The Corvette is a mainstay in the Midsize Premium Sporty segment, competing against six other high-performance (and high-dollar) models. A small and exclusive group, it includes some of the world's finest sports cars.
With sales of 32,489 units in calendar year 2005, according to the J.D. Power and Associates Sales Report,SM the Corvette holds a comfortable sales lead. The next closest competitor, the Porsche 911, sold 10,107 units in 2005. Following closely was the Mercedes-Benz SL-Class (10,080 sales in 2005). Others in the segment include the Lexus SC Series, Cadillac XLR, Dodge Viper, and very low-volume Maserati coupe and Spyder.
|Base||6 speed manual||$43,690||400-hp / 6.0L 8-cyl||18/28|
|Z06 Hardtop||6 speed manual||$64,890||505-hp / 7.0L 8-cyl||16/26|