In just a few weeks, on May 30th, the 105th Indianapolis 500 will be driving at the legendary Brickyard. And another legend will be there to speed up the field: the Chevrolet Corvette. The 2021 race is the 18th race for the American sports car as a pace car and the second for the C8. This year the honor goes to a 2021 C8 Convertible in Arctic White with black and yellow accents – the first convertible Vette to rev up the Indy 500 since 2008.
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There are a lot that is unique to this car. On the one hand the strip package. The same goes for the specially customized stingray decals. And in order to fulfill the tasks of the pace car, flashlights are integrated in the headlights, front flaps and taillights. Perhaps the coolest touches are the four lights embedded in custom tarpaulin gondolas that add an air vent to the darkened gondolas. They also mean the convertible doesn’t have to wear a traditional and unsightly bar of light like some previous Vettes did.
Mechanically, this C8 is standard and uses the 495 hp LT2 V-8. This 6.2 liter engine is supported by an eight-speed dual clutch transmission. In our tests, the coupe managed a 0-60 time of an impressive 2.8 seconds and ran the quarter in 11.1 seconds at 123.2 mph – and the convertible has the same mechanics. We expect faster, more powerful C8 variants, and it is likely that they will be pushed into pace car service when they are introduced. Finally, consider how the C7’s pace car line has evolved: the regular Stingray took the job for the C7 debut. Two years later, the Z06 had the job, then the new Grand Sport and finally the all-powerful ZR1.
Maybe we’ll see a C8 Z06 at the Brickyard next year? We can only hope.