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There have been rumors about the powerplant and specs of C8 Chevrolet Corvette variants floating around for years. In fact, many of them came to be long before the first C8 even hit the production line. However, some of those rumors, the electric all-wheel drive one, for example, turned out to be true. Now, it’s looking like the rumors floating around of a twin-turbocharged version of the mighty flat-plane V8 from the Z06 powering the C8 ZR1 might turn out to be fact.

What engine will the C8 ZR1 Corvette have?

Rapid blue 2021 Chevrolet Corvette coupe 1LT sitting in front of foothills during sunrise front 3/4
2021 Chevrolet Corvette Z51 | Braden Carlson, MotorBiscuit

The nice folks over at Corvette Blogger keep a watchful eye on all things Corvette. Recently, they brought to light a forum discussion that revealed a parts catalog leak hinting at what will power the upcoming C8 ZR1. The part in question has the word turbo right on it. It’s time to get excited. The factory turbo Corvette could be coming to a dealership near you!

The GM part (number 12730410) is listed as a turbo inlet adapter. Under application, it says 5.5L LT7. That’s right, folks! A turbocharged 5.5-liter V8 is on the horizon. Given the circumstances, it’s safe to assume it’s for the Corvette. That being said, do keep in mind that these engines are also used in other GM products like Cadillacs. Furthermore, Cadillac has already proven it’s not afraid to throw some turbocharger action at a V8.

What is interesting, though, is that the screenshots also show that the LT7 engine has active fuel management (AFM) and variable valve timing (VVT). These features are not available on the LT6 engine found in the C8 Corvette Z06. So, it’s looking like the ZR1 may come equipped with a cross-plane V8 rather than the ferocious screaming flat-plane V8 in the Z06. Perhaps, though, Chevrolet engineers worked out a way to feature AFM and VVT on a flat-plane engine. Frankly, it’s hard to imagine something more heavenly!

Will the new ZR1 be all-wheel drive?

A bright orange 2024 Chevy C8 Corvette E-Ray parks in the lot at the National Corvette Museum.
2024 Chevrolet Corvette E-Ray | Erik Sherman, MotorBiscuit

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One of the original rumors was that the ZR1 would eventually come to be with an all-wheel drive system. However, those early rumors could have easily been a miss-mash of planning for the E-Ray and ZR1 as separate entities. Only time will tell.

All that said, the elusive “900 horsepower twin-turbo all-wheel drive ZR1” rumor of yesteryear is certainly not something we’d be upset to see. In fact, we’d do our best to be first in line to get behind the wheel.

Overall, while it’s fun to speculate what might come to be, we all just have to wait to see what Chevrolet officially has in its bag. One thing is seemingly certain, though: there’s a turbocharged 5.5-liter V8 in the labs at GM.