So maybe you’re like me and believe that the Corvette ZR1 is one hell of a car, but a bit too much for a Corvette? Maybe you’re like me in thinking that the Z06 is the better deal, because it can be had at a local dealer for $67,000 brand new, versus the $106,000 base price of the ZR1?

Well, if you think that way, then you are in luck, because GM feels we are right, too. Chevrolet has released a limited to 500 run of the Corvette Z06 Carbon. But don’t fret, the options I’m about to list can also be ordered on any new Z06, as well.

The Z06 Carbon doesn’t have any new engine performance, special exhaust, or anything to add horsepower. It instead makes up for its lack of finesse by adding, well, just that, finesse.

The ZR1 comes with Brembo carbon ceramic brakes that were made for the Ferrari Enzo, competition wheels , carbon fiber splitter, rocker panels, roof, hood, full length rear lip, and the pièce de résistance, magnetic ride control.X11CH_CR008

All of this comes on the new Z06 Carbon, as well as an interior swathed in suede. Nothing updated on the inside, just suede inserts in the seats, armrest, shifter and steering wheel and door panels. Depending on which exterior color you choose, of which there are only two; Inferno Orange and Supersonic Blue (pictured) The Carbon model also adds black headlight interior trim and side mirrors, you get the same color stitching on the seats and steering wheel, which is very nice.

The reason for the Z06 Carbon is to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Corvette’s first appearance at the 24 hours of Le Mans, and upon purchasing said Corvette, you get a set of decal numbers to fit on each side of the car. Interesting.

Pricing has yet to be released, but expect all cars to be sold out as soon as they hit dealerships. I, for one, would buy one if I could. Wait, did I just say that I’d buy a brand new Corvette? Oh my God, the world really is coming to an end… X11CH_CR006

Apart from that, my favorite part of the new Carbon Z06 has to be the hood. I know that sounds weird to most of you reading this, but I’m a classic Corvette guy. And I miss the days of the big 427 hoods on these cars, and it’s refreshing to see GM go back to that style.

All of these options can be added to the regular Z06 by ordering the Z07 package and/or the CFZ package. The CFZ option code adds all of the carbon fiber pieces from the ZR1. The Z07 option code adds the carbon ceramic brakes with competition gray wheels, and magnetic selective ride. Either one can be ordered without the other, or together.

Press Release:

DETROIT — When the 2006 Corvette Z06 was introduced, it represented the closest connection to the Corvette race cars ever. The 2009 Corvette ZR1 closed the gap between racing and production even further. This year, Corvette continues its tradition of track-to-street technology transfer with the 2011 Corvette Z06 Carbon Limited Edition.

“Designed to further incorporate technology developed through racing, the Corvette Z06 Carbon Limited Edition is a tribute to the 50th anniversary of Corvette’s first race in the 24 Hours of LeMans,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet General Manager. “With a limited production of 500 units, this car is a must-have for the true Corvette collector and driving enthusiast.”

The Corvette Z06 Carbon Limited Edition is another example of the expanded Corvette line-up. Five years ago, customers had the choice of a Corvette coupe or convertible. With the addition of the Z06, Grand Sport coupe and convertible and ZR1, Corvette enthusiasts now have more choices than ever.

“For track use, the Z06 Carbon is the best balanced Corvette yet. It combines the lightweight and naturally-aspirated Z06 engine with the road-holding and braking of the ZR1,” said Tadge Juechter, Corvette Chief Engineer. “For technical tracks like Laguna Seca, the Z06 Carbon could shave up to three seconds off the Z06 lap time.”

This limited edition Z06 will boast Brembo carbon ceramic brakes with specific dark gray metallic calipers. These powerful brakes were first introduced on the ZR1. Black 20-spoke 19-inch front/20-inch rear wheels complement the car’s Michelin PS2 tires. Other mechanical features include Magnetic Selective Ride Control for the first time on the Z06 and enhanced cooling. The car also features a special carbon pattern engine cover.

The Corvette Z06 Carbon will be available in two colors: Inferno Orange and the all-new Supersonic Blue. Black headlamps and mirrors, a ZR1-style body color spoiler, body color door handles, carbon fiber raised hood, and black carbon fiber rockers and splitter enhance the Z06’s dynamic design and reduce mass and aerodynamic lift. For track events, customers can also install the Euro-styled racing numbers that come with each car.

The Z06 Carbon’s ebony leather and suede interior is complemented by blue or orange seat stitching to match the exterior color chosen. Other features include a unique steering wheel emblem, sill plate and logoed headrest. The suede used on the steering wheel, shifter, seat inserts, armrests and doors add to the luxury of this limited edition Z06.

An optional Z07 performance package that includes the mechanical upgrades introduced on the Z06 Carbon can be added to a regular 2011 Z06. This package also includes Competition Gray 20-spoke wheels and all the chassis and cooling upgrades.

The CFZ Z06 carbon fiber package includes black carbon fiber rockers, splitter and roof panel with the full-width body color spoiler. It can also be purchased with or without the Z07 package on regular Z06 models.

The 2011 Corvette Z06 Carbon Limited Edition, as well as the new Z07 and CFZ Z06 option packages will be available in late summer.

[Source: Chevrolet]