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The C6 Corvette is arguably the most important turning point in the history of the Corvette. When the first C1 Corvette was released in 1953, it changed American sports cars forever. Gone were the days of American sports cars only viewed in terms of how fast they were in a straight line; the Corvette was an all-around performance car heavily influenced by European sports cars. The C6 Corvette was a refinement of an already near-perfect American sports car. Here are the highlights for three popular models.

1. 2010 Corvette C6 Grand Sport

A yellow 2009 Chevrolet Corvette parked indoors in a black room with a black background.
2009 Chevrolet Corvette | Creative Commons

The Grand Sport name is one steeped in Corvette history. The first Corvette Grand Sport was created in 1963 as a race-ready vehicle. This track-bred Corvette featured larger brakes, a 6.2-liter lightweight engine that could produce around 550 hp, and an enormous 36-gallon fuel tank.

These components made the Grand Sport the perfect endurance race car for the 1960s. In 1996, 1,000 special edition Corvette Grand Sport models were produced, but these cars were little more than a special appearance package.

In 2010, the Corvette Grand Sport returned with a purpose. This brand-new Grand Sport features the same wide body and brakes as the Z06 Corvette, with the suspension found in the Z51 performance package typically found as an optional upgrade in the base model Corvette.

This Corvette is also equipped with the base 436 hp V8 engine from the standard C6. The end result is a wide-body Corvette with a huge amount of mechanical grip and just the perfect amount of power.

2. 2009 Corvette C6 ZR1

The first ZR1 Corvette was a performance package offered for the 1970 C3 Corvette. The original ZR1 was a race-ready option with large brakes, a large aluminum radiator, heavy-duty suspension, and a four-speed manual transmission. The 1990 C4 Corvette brought back the ZR1 name with a special performance package that added a Lotus-engineered engine capable of around 405 horsepower at its peak in 1993.

The 2009 ZR1 Corvette changed the world forever for American sports cars. This 2009 ZR1 came equipped with a 6.2-liter V8 that produced 638 hp alongside 604 lb-ft of torque. This 2009 ZR1 is capable of 205 hp as Car and Driver experienced.

3. 2011 Corvette C6 Z06 Carbon Fiber Edition

The Z06 Corvette already had an impressive 505 hp 7.0-liter V8 engine, but the Carbon Fiber Edition brought the Z06 to the next level with adaptive magnetic ride control suspension and added lightweight carbon fiber components from the ZR1.

The Carbon Fiber Edition of the Z06 Corvette gives all the prestige and presence found with a carbon fiber-laden ZR1 without the high price tag.


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