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2011 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 (photos)

The Corvette is a stunning piece of power, its big engine and light weight putting it into the supercar category. Our car's included Ultimate Performance Package made it even more capable for its intended purpose of blowing away other cars on the track.

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Wayne Cunningham
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1 of 17 Josh Miller/CNET
The Corvette, in Z06 trim, is America's supercar, able to compete with much more expensive efforts from Italy. Always a two seater, the car has evolved substantially over the years. This 2011 version offers performance options to make it more than track-worthy.
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The Corvette has a unique look, with a large footprint but low profile. Headlights are neatly tucked into the front fenders.
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At 7 liters, this V-8 has huge cylinders. Power is 505 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque, with the low-weight car allowing for 0-to-60 mph speeds of 3.7 seconds.
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As part of an optional package, this car came with a carbon fiber roof, helping lighten the load a bit.
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Chevrolet prints the horsepower right on the Z06 badge, suggesting some proud engineers.
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Magnetic-ride technology adapts the suspension for road conditions and driving style, helping the car keep grip under all circumstances. The suspension tuning favors rigidity, meaning a hard ride for car occupants.
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Four big exhaust tips stick out of the back, pipes the broadcast an awe-inspiring rumble.
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The glass hatch cover has been part of Corvette styling for quite some time now. The cargo area is shallow, but wide, and accessible from the cabin.
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We found the ergonomics of the cabin a little tight, with our knees against the dash when the seat was in the right position for good clutch operation.
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As an option, our car came with plenty of stitched leather covering cabin surfaces.
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Chevrolet fits audio control buttons on the right spoke, and a Bluetooth voice command button on the left.
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The instrument cluster is enhanced by a head-up display showing speed and tach on the windshield.
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The six-speed manual transmission has a 1-4 shunt, guiding the shifter from first to fourth gear instead of second under modest acceleration. This feature helps the engine remain at low speed, saving gas.
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This DVD-based navigation system has very poor resolution.
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A slot for the map DVD and audio CDs sits behind the screen, not our favorite arrangement.
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The stereo has an iPod input in the console. We found the interface slow when we browsed albums and artists on an iPod.
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The Bose audio system uses seven speakers, four mids, two tweeters, and a subwoofer. The audio quality is passable, but often not heard because of road noise.

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