Starting with the name.
According to Car and Driver, the C7-generation Corvette Stingray's big-money version will no longer wear the Z06 badge; in honor of the car's seventh-generation and the inexorable tide of progress, it'll be called Z07. They claim it'll come with larger, stickier Michelins and Brembo carbon-ceramic brakes, both of which seem like pretty fair assumptions. Then Car and Driver seems to claim (without directly claiming, but the implication is there) that the new
Z06 Z07 will trade in that sweet, sweet 7.0 liter naturally-aspirated V8 for a roughly 600 horsepower turbocharged motor smaller than the Corvette Stingray's 6.2 liter LT1. (Specifically, they cite the 4.5 liter twin-turbo V8 in the Cadillac Elmiraj concept as a possible powerplant.) Car and Driver also says the Z07 will fill the highest-performance Corvette slot for quite some time, as they say that if the ZR1 returns, it won't be until late in the C7 lifecycle.
This report, though, comes pretty much in direct contrast to a Motor Trend report from earlier this year that claims Chevrolet is already hard at work on both the C7 Z06 and the C7 CR1, and also claimed the C7-generation Z06 will keep its 7.0 liter LS7 V8. How much power said C7-gen Corvette Z06 makes, they claimed, depends on how high they can jack the new ZR1's output, as they want to keep a healthy difference between the two; if they can push the new ZR1 to 700 horsepower, the new Z06 could make 600.
Obviously, both these rumors can't be true at the same time. So for the moment, we're going to give the credibility nod to the Motor Trend report. The LS7 motor is such a gem, we find it hard to believe Chevrolet would let the Corvette give it up. Having the Z06 as the naturally-aspirated track monster and the ZR1 as the supercar-killing street machine seems to be working like gangbusters for Chevy so far, so we find it hard to believe they'd trade that advantage away for a handful of CAFE mpg. But with the new Z06 (or Z07) expected to debut in early 2015, we've got time to ruminate. [via Car and Driver, Motor Trend]