hp per liter
(from GM Press
Release) Corvette Racing to Introduce Corvette C6.R in GT2
Class at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
Next-Generation Race Cars Strengthen Links Between Competition and
DETROIT – Corvette Racing will open a new chapter with the
competition debut of the next-generation Corvette C6.R at the
Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on August 6-8. In anticipation of a
single GT class in 2010, Corvette Racing will test and develop the
latest Corvette C6.R in the GT2 category in the final five rounds of
the 2009 American Le Mans Series. With the upcoming move to a
unified GT category, the twin Compuware Corvette C6.R race cars will
compete against rivals representing Ferrari, Porsche, BMW, Aston
Martin, Jaguar, Viper, Panoz, and Ford.
Based on the Corvette ZR1 supercar, the next-generation Corvette
C6.R has even stronger links to the production version of America's
performance icon than its predecessors. The GT2 rules require the
use of many production-based components, expanding the opportunities
for the two-way transfer of technology between the race track and
the showroom. The updated Corvette C6.R utilizes the ZR1's body
design, aerodynamic package, aluminum frame and chassis structure,
steering system, windshield, and other components. The race team has
prepared the cars for the rigors of endurance racing with safety and
performance modifications as permitted by the GT2 rules.
"One of the many benefits of the Corvette Racing program has been
the opportunity to demonstrate the technology transfer between the
race car and the production car," said Mark Kent, GM Racing manager.
"The global movement toward a single GT class will allow us to
compete head-to-head with more marketplace competitors while
increasing both the production content of the Corvette C6.R race
cars and the relevance of racing to our customers. This is a step
that positions Corvette for the future of production-based sports
car racing worldwide, and a move that is perfectly aligned with GM's
marketing and business objectives in racing."
Previous versions of the Corvette C5-R and C6.R race cars have
dominated the GTS and GT1 categories in the last decade, winning 77
races and eight consecutive ALMS championships. The GT1 Corvettes
were retired following Corvette Racing's sixth victory in the 24
Hours of Le Mans on June 14, 2009.
"In our decade in GT1, our primary focus has been on racing
victories and the validation of the Corvette as a world-class sports
car," said Tadge Juechter, Corvette chief engineer. "As an authentic
way to communicate to knowledgeable customers, nothing beats racing.
As a cost-effective means to improve vehicle performance, nothing
beats racing. These are the reasons racing is in Corvette's DNA.
"Behind the scenes, the race team and the production car team have
grown closer together, finding numerous ways to support each other
and to make both cars better," Juechter said. "Most automotive
companies give lip service to claims like 'racing improves the
breed' or 'race on Sunday, sell on Monday'. For team Corvette, it is
a daily reality. It is now impossible to imagine one team without
The upcoming GT regulations required a comprehensive redesign of the
Corvette C6.R package. In place of the GT1 Corvette's steel frame,
the GT2 version utilizes the production ZR1's hydroformed aluminum
frame as the foundation for a fully integrated tubular steel safety
cage. The GT1 version's wide, louvered fenders are replaced by
production-based ZR1 fenders with wheel flares. In accordance with
the aerodynamic regulations, the rear wing is reduced 25 percent in
width, the diffuser is a flat panel without fences or strakes, and
the splitter extends only as far as its production ZR1 counterpart.
Steel brake rotors have replaced the carbon discs used previously,
and the wheels are aluminum instead of magnesium. The adjustable
steering column and steering rack are sourced from the street
"Integrating a steel safety cage that meets GM Racing's stringent
standards as well as the strength and durability targets required in
racing is a challenge with an aluminum frame," explained Corvette
Racing engineering director Doug Louth. "Working in conjunction with
the structure and chassis engineers in the Corvette production
group, we designed, built and tested numerous examples before we
finalized the configuration. We went through a similar process with
the production Corvette group on the body design and aero
components. It was truly a collaborative effort between the
production engineers and the race team."
In the remaining races in 2009, the Corvette race cars will be
powered by 6.0-liter GM small-block V8s that are based on the
7.0-liter LS7.R that powered the GT1 version. This reduction in
displacement was achieved by shortening the crankshaft stroke from
3.875-inch to 3.32-inch. The diameter of the series-mandated intake
air restrictors was decreased from 30.6 mm to 28.6 mm, with a
corresponding reduction in engine output from 590 to 470 horsepower.
A 5.5-liter production-based GM small-block V8 is currently under
development and will be introduced at the start of the 2010 season.
The Corvette Racing team is continuing its commitment to green
racing with the use of E85R ethanol racing fuel.
While much of the hardware has changed, Corvette Racing's roster of
championship-winning drivers remains the same. Johnny O'Connell and
Jan Magnussen will share the No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R, and
Oliver Gavin and Olivier Beretta will drive the No. 4 Compuware
Corvette C6. R. They will be joined by Antonio Garcia and Marcel
Fassler at Petit Le Mans.
Corvette Racing also has the continued support of its long-time
sponsors and technical partners. Compuware is the team's primary
sponsor, with Mobil 1 supplying low-friction lubricants and Michelin
providing its world-class racing tires. Corvette Racing's sponsors
also include XM Satellite Radio, UAW-GM, Genuine Corvette
Accessories, Bose, Motorola, PRS Guitars, and BBS.
"Compuware leads the world in application performance solutions, and
partnering with Corvette Racing gives us another high-tech,
high-performance and high-impact platform for communicating to our
customers and prospects," said Compuware Chairman and CEO Peter
Karmanos, Jr. "The launch of the Corvette C6.R in GT2 is a great
extension to our relationship with General Motors, Chevy and
Corvette. We look forward to even more victories in the months
The GT2-spec Corvettes were designed, built and tested on a
compressed schedule. The program was approved and announced in
September 2008, and construction of the first chassis began in early
December. The first track test was conducted at Road Atlanta on
April 8-9, followed by single-car tests in Elkhart Lake, Wis., and
"The Corvette Racing team had to take on several challenges
simultaneously to execute this program," said Doug Fehan, Corvette
Racing program manager. "We were preparing for our regular race
season with the GT1 cars while designing the GT2 version. The cars
were being built and tested in the midst of our preparations for Le
Mans. The team was multi-tasking to the extreme, operating on a
leaner budget and a faster timeline. It was a monumental effort to
have these cars ready for the Mid-Ohio race."
Advanced technology tools enabled Corvette Racing to meet the
challenge. "With the short development schedule, we relied on
'virtual' design and computer simulation more than ever before,"
said team manager Gary Pratt. "We made design, engineering and
manufacturing simultaneous processes as much as possible. For
example, while the first chassis was being built, we continued to
run computer simulations on suspension geometry and refined the
aerodynamics using CFD (computational fluid dynamics) because these
areas didn't have to be finalized until later in the production
timeline. We have developed the capabilities to do finite element
analysis and composite fabrication in-house, which has accelerated
our design and production cycle.
"We're not running for a championship this year, so we're looking at
the upcoming races as preparation for 2010," Pratt said. "Our only
testing from this point on will be at the races, and we'll be doing
it in the public eye. Certainly we hope to achieve the same level of
success that we did in GT1, but the caliber of the competition we
will face in GT2 is very high. When we started in GT1 in 1999, it
took a while to win; now we have 10 years of experience that should
help us to become competitive in a new category. Everyone at
Corvette Racing is looking forward to the challenge."
Fehan is confident but cautious about Corvette Racing's prospects in
the GT2 category: "In the limited testing we've done so far, we've
been very impressed with the car's durability, reliability and
performance," he said. "We'll continue to focus on those three
factors in the upcoming races. We view the rest of this year as a
development cycle, and we believe that our experience as a team in
preparation, race strategy, and pit stop execution should allow us
to be competitive even if there is a slight performance disparity."
The GT2 version of the Corvette C6.R will make its debut in the
Acura Sports Car Challenge at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in
Lexington, Ohio. The two-hour, 45-minute race is scheduled to start
at 3 p.m. EDT on Saturday, August 8. NBC will televise the race
tape-delayed at 2:30 p.m. EDT on Sunday, August 9.
About General Motors: General Motors Company, one of the world's
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