2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51 Dyno Test on Edmunds.com

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51 Dyno Test

Spinning the Rollers in the C7


2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51

Here it is, the world's first independent chassis dyno test of the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, or C7.

You already know all about the C7's LT1 engine because you read our Gen 5 engine backgrounder. You know that it is equipped with direct injection for the first time, and that at the flywheel it churns out 460 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque (with optional performance exhaust). Heck, you're such a devoted reader that you've memorized our Corvette Stingray Road Test.

To learn more about the manner in which the C7's power is delivered to the wheels, we strapped a 2014 Corvette down to MD Automotive's Dynojet chassis dyno.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51

Specifically, the car you see here is an early-VIN Z51 with the performance exhaust option, which adds 5 hp and 5 lb-ft of torque. So, yeah, you're buying that exhaust for the sound. And it's a sound that will be familiar to anyone who has been within earshot of a Corvette at any point in the last 15 years or so. The LT1 may be heavily revised, but it's still a pushrod, big-cube, crossplane V8, and it still sounds like one.

Here's how it performed on the dyno:

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51

Back when GM's engine nerds first told us about the LT1, they stressed its big gains in low-speed torque. They weren't kidding. It's one stout mill down low. At no point between 2,000 and 6,000 rpm does the Stingray generate less than 350 lb-ft of torque.

There's also an upward bump in the torque curve at 3,800 rpm that coincides with the exhaust bypass valves snapping open to unleash the LT1's full-throated bellow. This bump is a characteristic not normally seen on GM V8s (they typically exhibit a rounded dome of a torque curve) but nobody's likely to complain. As a result of the bump, peak torque of 407 lb-ft (at the wheels) arrives at 4,900 rpm just before it precipitously rolls off on its way to the fuel cut.

Peak power of 411 hp (again, at the wheels) arrives just a thousand revs after the torque reaches its maximum, but clearly this is an engine with a broad-shouldered and flexible power delivery.

For kicks, here's how the C7's dyno result compares to the LS3 in our erstwhile long-term 2010 Camaro SS. The Camaro was originally rated at 426 hp at the flywheel.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51

Note the across-the-board gains despite no change in displacement, rev ceiling or even valve lift (the LT1 uses virtually the same cam profiles as the LS3) between the LS3 and LT1.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51

The Stingray's direct injection (DI) is key to the engine architecture's newfound vigor. DI's cooling effect facilitates a bump in the compression ratio and improves volumetric efficiency by not plugging the intake ports with fuel mist.

OK, Ford fans. Here's where you get to gloat. Below is how the Stingray stacks up against the 2013 Ford Shelby GT500's supercharged monster mill. Additional words aren't really needed here, only to add that these cars are a bit like apples and kiwis despite their price similarity.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51

Nevertheless, the LT1 is a worthy addition to the Corvette legacy, especially when you consider that what we see here is the base Corvette. It's the new normal, and there are the inevitable higher-zoot C7 variants in the pipeline.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51

When we tested a different C7 at GM's Milford Proving Ground, it laid down a startlingly high trap speed of 117.3 mph. It's an open question whether the car you see here — fueled as it is with California's best premium fuel of 91 octane instead of the 93 or 94 octane that was in the Milford car — can duplicate that performance. One that we'll be answering very shortly.

The manufacturers provided Edmunds these vehicles for the purposes of evaluation.



  • agentorange agentorange Posts:

    If we use the usual 15% for driveline losses, that makes 483hp at the flywheel. Seems the motor is slightly underrated even on 91 octane. Good job, GM.

  • noburgers noburgers Posts:

    I hope you had time to do a suspension walk around while you had the car on loan. That torque curve looks great.

  • fordson1 fordson1 Posts:

    Great job. Looks like it's making at least what it's rated to make...and on 91 octane at that. Addition of VVT and DI makes a huge difference in comparison to the LS3.

  • isaacl isaacl Posts:

    noburgers, there was already a suspension walkaround done, you can find it in the older posts. it was fascinating. I for one was stunned that Aerogel was used for cooling underneath.

  • redgeminipa redgeminipa Posts:

    Instead of always bitching and moaning about California's low 91 octane, why doesn't Edmunds consider moving to a neighboring state? You know, one with lower taxes, prices and better fuels? The entire USA doesn't live in congested, grotesquely expensive California. I'm sure the whole staff would save enough in taxes alone to justify moving out of state.

  • duck87 duck87 Posts:

    That's a sexy dyno graph.

  • spdracerut_ spdracerut_ Posts:

    First off, that's a heck of an engine. Very impressive torque curve. @redgeminipa, it's simple economic forces at work here. Supply, demand, and cost curves. High demand, low supply = high cost. I personally love living out here in LA. And I've lived in Florida, Texas, Michigan, and spent vacations traveling through and spending time in about another 30 states. I'll take LA thank you very much; the benefits outweight the costs, hence the high 'demand' and high 'costs'.

  • lions208487 lions208487 Posts:

    Impressive. I like the GT500, but I would take this or a Boss 302.

  • The Gt500 wins on the dyno va this base Vette. But what are its numbers on the drag strip, slalom, braking, skid pad, road course? Winning where the car is not actually moving, and moving is the point of a car, is sort of hollow.. @ridgeminipa, why do you think it is cheaper to live where you are than CA? Supply and demand...

  • jeffinoh jeffinoh Posts:

    Does the engine connect to a vacuum cleaner? Cuz this Vette sucks more than ever!!! How many of you guys are buying one??? Nobody can afford one? Hmmm...

  • threxx threxx Posts:

    @redgeminipa I don't care where their offices are, but in tests like this where every last horsepower is scrutinized, maybe they should get some 93 octane imported to their test track or buy some octane boosters for their own gasoline. They'd only need t

  • yellowbal yellowbal Posts:

    @threxx, it takes awhile for the computer to optimize to higher octane. Knock sensors will quickly retard timing but restoring power is a slow and cautious process.

  • spdracerut_ spdracerut_ Posts:

    To those who downgraded my previous comment, I'm going to guess it's in regards to living in LA because the LT1 engine certainly does not suck. I challenge you guys though, how many of you actually live here in LA? Let me tell you, my bicycle ride after work today with it 70 degrees out next to the ocean with the sun starting to set really sucked. Playing beach volleyball after work tomorrow is really going to suck too. And so is my motorcycle ride on Saturday in the canyons in Malibu with a forecast high of 80F. Oh, and my car track day in two weekends, that's really going to suck too. I just had real deal Korean BBQ and Japanese food last week, I think I'm going to be a bit boring and get Thai later.

  • There's too much music. I'd rather hear more of the car and Jay talking.

  • stovt001_ stovt001_ Posts:

    @spdracerut: I live in the LA area too, and while I can't disagree with your pro lists (though I'm inland, so I'm bicycling to work in 95 degree sweltering heat) I'm strongly considering moving out of the area because there are many cons too. The main thi

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  • h3avy h3avy Posts:

    NO air fuel from that dyno? Engine compartment looks lonely without a supercharger

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