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Z51 Package Lowers Corvette C8’s Top Speed — but Improves Its 0-60 Time

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Photo: Chevrolet

The all-new 2020 Chevrolet Corvette C8 Stingray has been hauling in praise for everything from its price to its comfort to its generous helping of standard features. Naturally, it’s also blessed with extremely potent performance — but which version of the 2020 ’Vette should you acquire to maximize your thrills?

At first glance, it would seem that the base model, priced at an attractive $59,995, is the way to go. After all, it has a 6.2-liter small-block V8 engine located behind the cockpit, a fast-shifting eight-speed dual-clutch transmission, and a mighty output of 495 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque. And there’s more: the entry-level C8 Stingray can reach an eye-popping top speed of 194 mph.

Not so fast, though (literally). You can also equip the new Corvette with the available Z51 performance package for an extra $5,000. There’s a catch, though: with this package, you won’t be able to reach the unadorned base model’s top speed.

Worth the Wait: Take a closer look at the spectacular new 2020 Corvette C8

Photo: Chevrolet

That may sound like a strike against the Z51-equipped Corvette, but it’s really not, and here’s why: the Z51’s aerodynamic features and other performance-enhancing elements are designed to increase downforce, helping it grip the pavement more effectively as it flies around tight curves. That’s not great for achieving that 194 mph top speed, but it’s ideal for just about any other kind of performance-oriented driving on tracks or back roads. And let’s face it: Where, exactly, would you be able to drive your Corvette 194 mph anyway?

There’s one more point in favor of the Z51 Corvette. Thanks to this package’s performance-boosting qualities, it shrinks the car’s 0-60 mph time to just 3 seconds — a metric that can’t be achieved in the base model.  

So, if you’re going after the highest (and quickest) possible performance in your new Corvette, you may want to opt for the Z51 package. If you’re not looking to push your new ride to its limits, though, you’ll probably be just fine with the entry-level version.

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News Source: Car and Driver