New flame-throwing 2019 Corvette ZR1 is the fastest yet


4 - Since 1970, only four Corvettes have been given the ZR1 designation.

At the Dubai International Motor Show, in the city where everything is outrageously sized and designed, Chevrolet unveiled its all-new 2019 Corvette ZR1, the fastest and most powerful production Corvette ever created. It goes on sale in spring 2018. The power is channeled through the familiar Corvette seven-speed manual - or, in a first for ZR1s, an eight-speed automatic with manual-mode paddle-shifters. Although its V-8 displaces the same 6.2 liters as the Z06's also-supercharged LT4 V-8, the ZR1's supercharger has 52 percent more displacement (that is, volume) than the Z06 'charger.

It's official, the most powerful road-going Corvette in history is a bad-ass in more ways than one.

It's a boutique approach that in many ways is at odds with the "supercar for the people" strategy Chevy has long taken with the Corvette in general, but it makes a lot of sense for the 2019 ZR1. A new carbon fiber "halo" hood rises high and is open in the center in order to clear the bigger supercharger and intercooler. An Available ZTK Performance Package adds a taller, 2-way adjustable stanchion-mounted rear wing that supplies significant additional downforce without introducing aerodynamic drag. What's more, the model comes with two aerodynamic packages, fine-tuned in wind-tunnel testing; one includes a standard rear Low Wing that allows the new ZR1 to hit a top speed of over 210 miles per hour (338 km/h), the other an adjustable High Wing which generates around 950 pounds of downforce for the quickest lap times. Michelin Pilot Super Sport run-flats are also standard, sized P285/30ZR19 in front and P335/25ZR20 in back. Both of the rear wings are attached to the car's chassis - something Chevrolet claims will increase strength and stability.

Another option will be a Sebring Orange design package that combines Sebring orange paint with matching brake calipers and accent stripes for the splitter and rocker and, inside, orange seat belts, stitching, and bronze aluminum interior trim. Other add-ons available to buyers include a carbon-fibre-rimmed steering wheel, competition sport seats, a performance data recorder and a Bose premium audio system.

Even so, you likely won't be able to match the ZR1's overall performance at its price, no matter how hard you try.

Chevrolet isn't quite making the decision as binary as that, but when you're ordering your shiny new 2019 Corvette ZR1 you do have a choice to make. In this respect, then, the auto remains the bargain that the Corvette has always been, while at the same time reasserting itself as America's definitive sports car*.