The Chevrolet Corvette C4 was a sports car that was produced by Chevrolet for the 1984 through 1996 model years. The convertible returned, as did higher performing engines, exemplified by the 375 hp LT5 found in the ZR-1. In early March 1990, the ZR-1 would set a new record for the highest 24 hour-5,000 mile land-speed by going over 175 mph.
You can find one of these world record holding 1991 Corvette ZR1s here at Skyway Classics. We have a great black one with a black interior and all the bells and whistles. The ZR1 package came with a smoother, slimmer nose with wraparound parking/cornering/fog lights, wider body side moldings that were now body colored, and horizontal front-fender strakes that replaced the previous gill-like louvers.
They also got the rear end look from the 1990 ZR-1 including the rectangular tail lights. The base wheels were changed to a new saw-blade design. (They are chrome on the one we have.)
Inside, a new power-delay feature allowed the audio system and power windows to operate after the ignition key was switched off until the driver's door was opened, up to a maximum of 15 minutes. In addition, a "low oil” indicator was added to the driver information center, and all models were pre-wired to accommodate a cellular telephone or other 12-volt accessory.
With input from GM, Lotus designed a new engine to fit in place of the L98 V8 that was powering the standard C4. The result was what GM dubbed the LT5, an aluminum-block V8 with the same bore centers as the L98, but with four overhead camshafts and 32 valves. Lotus also designed a unique air management system for the engine to provide a wider power band by shutting off 8 of the 16 intake runners and fuel injectors when the engine was at part-throttle, while still giving the ZR-1 a stellar 375 hp when at wide open throttle.
Exhaust systems were also revised for '91, and included larger muffler sections with a more finely tuned exhaust note and lower back pressure; though this was intended to boost performance, power ratings for the L98 engine remained the same as before.
And for 1991, the ZR-1 retained unique doors and rear fenders to accommodate its 11-inch-wide rear wheels and tires. This left only the slightly wider rear flanks, a roof-mounted center stop-lamp (other models now integrated it into the rear fascia) and a single badge to distinguish a ZR-1 from a base coupe.
A total of 6,939 ZR-1s were manufactured over the six-year period. Not until the debut of the C5 platform Z06 in 2001 would Chevrolet have another production Corvette capable of matching the ZR-1's performance.
Although the ZR-1 was extremely quick for its time (0-60 mph in 4.4 seconds, and onto 180+ mph), the huge performance of the LT5 engine was matched by its robustness. As evidence of this, a stock ZR-1 set seven international and world records at a test track in Fort Stockton, Texas on March 1, 1990, verified by the FIA (Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile.)
Come into Skyway Classics to see this great example of a 1991 Corvette ZR1 today!
So give us a call at 941-254-6608.
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