the years, Corvette has been chosen to be several pace cars.
But no opportunities were as big as this one...
was only a matter of time. One of the world's greatest sports
car taking part in the world's greatest endurance race. On June
17, 2000, the C5-R Corvette took on the world at the Le Mans
and surprised more than a few skeptics with an impressive finish
(third and fourth in class).
has gone this way before. In 1960, a production-based Corvette
completed this 24-hour test of automotive endurance.
Corvette gave us a lot to work with right out of the box. So
when the Corvette C5-R first attacked Le Mans' Mulsanne Corner,
it did so with many of the same parts found in the production
car. And with its already aerodynamic styling, rigid body structure
and tremendous suspension geometry, the Corvette was destined
to be a race car.
search for an engine led us right to our production car's LS1
power plant. Of course, modifications had to be made. So, we
took the aluminum small block from the production car and increased
it from 250 to a whopping 620 horsepower. The fact that we could
do this says a lot about the inherent goodness of the LS1.
racing Vette turned a lot heads on the way to Le Mans. In January
1999, after 4,000 miles of testing, the C5-R was entered in
the grueling Rolex 24 At Daytona. The C5-R not only completed
the race, but gave the rest of the pack a run for its money.
By its second season, the C5-R had made it to the podium several
times. Then came Le Mans 2000, the "granddaddy" of
all endurance racers. A podium finish in class confirmed what
we'd all suspected: the C5-R Corvette is one of the world's
great race cars.
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