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Turn Your C7 Driver into a Race Car...and Still Drive it on the Street

In the Interim: Do you feel the need for speed

Brian Brennan Jan 23, 2017
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For as long as I can remember owning a Corvette offered a door into the world of racing … or at the very least high-performance driving. In the earliest of days (C1 through C3), owner/drivers (privateers as they were so often called) amounted to an owner driving his Vette Monday through Thursday and beginning on Friday prepping the car to race on the weekend.

In my case it was drag racing. I would drive it on the street all week and beginning Friday afternoon start its weekly transformation into a weekend racer. Sunday nights were reserved for bringing the car back to some form of streetable manners. Over the course of time the ’56 eventually became too ill-tempered to drive daily, or for that matter at all, on the street and became a full-time race car.

Nowadays, technology is such that any Corvette out of the box is capable of providing an experience on the track to invigorate any of us. But for those who want more there’re already available option packages. There’s the revered Z06 option along with the Z51 performance package, but now there is the T1 Suspension Kit meant to be used with 2014-forward Corvettes. For those that just can’t leave well enough alone and want to turn their very streetable but monstrous performing Corvette into not only a weekend racer but one capable of winning, here’s something you might want to consider.

Z51 Brake Kit 2/5

The Z51 Brake Kit features slotted rotors with diameters measuring 345mm in front and 338mm in rear. This increases the overall diameter in relation to your “standard” Corvette Stingray’s 321mm front rotors and increases the brake torque up to 57 percent on average. This kit also features high-performance pads.

Corvette Track Suspension Kit 3/5

This Suspension Package was developed for racing. The Corvette Track Suspension Kit has been tuned with all-new stabilizer bars, lower control arms with stiffer handling bushings and track-optimized passive shocks. Roll stiffness has been increased (40 percent front, 20 percent rear). This kit is homologated for SCCA’s Touring 1 class and is designed to maintain eligibility for most club racing sanctioning bodies.

Should you find yourself with a 2014 or newer Corvette that’s outfitted with the Z06 and the Z51 packages you already have more car than most could ever hope for. But to squeeze the very last bit out there’s more. You can take your Z51-equipped hot rod and fit to it the T1 Suspension Kit (PN 23336064) that incorporates larger stabilizer bars, stiffer control arm bushings, and track-tuned dampers.

The Z51 Brake Kit (front: PN 23386144) (rear: PN 23386145) option includes larger two-piece rotors coupled with larger pads that are represented by six-piston front calipers and four-piston rear calipers. If you’re going this gonzo then you will want additional cooling capacity via a C6 Z06 Rear Brake Duct Kit (PN 15842373).

While on the subject of cooling, there’re a handful of optional Z06 coolers to remove the undesirable heat. There’s the Z06 Transmission Cooler Duct (PN 23212340); the Transmission Fluid Pump (PN 19180060); the Transmission Cooler (PN 23283460); and the secondary radiator (PN 84037858). While on the subject of heat there’s also the underbody heat shield (PN 23229542) to divert under body temps from seeping into the cockpit.

For those with the deep pockets and the real need for speed you might as well top off with the Z06 Carbon-Fiber Torque Tube and Prop Shaft Kit (PN 23228000, manual; PN 23227999, automatic) at a sobering MSRP of up to $4,270!

Well, there you have it. Turn your late-model Corvette into the most formidable of race cars. It’s all part of the Corvette heritage.

600 Watt Radiator Cooling Fan 4/5

Developed to meet the Z06’s track cooling requirements, this powerful, 600-watt Radiator Cooling Fan increases the fan speed over the Stingray’s 500-watt system for greater airflow and enhanced cooling capability. It is a direct replacement for the standard Corvette Stingray cooling fan.

Radiator 5/5

This radiator adds additional cooling capability to manual transmission Corvettes that see regular track use. This kit includes the lines and hardware necessary to mount and plumb this additional radiator to the front of any manual transmission-equipped Stingray.

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