2012 C6 Corvette
2012 Corvette Overview
Since the introduction of the Corvette in 1953, and especially since Zora Arkus Duntov breathed life into the earliest Corvette race cars, the Corvette production models – including the Grand Sport, the Z06, and most-especially the ZR1 – have always shared a special connection to their racetrack counterparts. The lineage of Corvette racers is almost as old as the car itself, and for generations, the “All American Sports Car” has proven itself to be a top contender on the world racing state.
The 2012 model year would continue that tradition. Chevrolet unveiled several new racing variants of the beloved Corvette, including both a newer GT contender as well as a Daytona Prototype class Corvette. These cars, developed in conjunction with their production model counterparts, would further demonstrate the fusion between the engineers designing these cars and the people operating them – both on the road and on the racetrack.
In the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) GT class, Corvette Racing started their season with a highly-modified “wide-body” C6.R ALMS GT Corvette. This car, which shared many of its design cues with its street-legal Z06 counterpart, proved to be an effective contender in the 2012 American Le Mans Series by claiming four victories, six runner-up finishes, 12 podium appearances, two poles and five fastest race laps. What makes this even more impressive is the fact that the 2012 ALMS season was comprised of just ten separate events, meaning that Corvette was one of the winningest and most recognized contenders in their class.
The high level of performance also propelled Corvette Racing to sweep the GT class championships. Corvette Racing won the team title, Chevrolet captured the manufacturer championship, drivers Oliver Gavin and Tommy Milner (of the No. 4 Corvette C6.R) won the GT drivers championship, while their fellow teammates Jan Magnussen and Antonio Garcia (drivers of the No. 3 Corvette C6.R) finished third in the drivers standings, while also securing the Green X GT manufacturer championship for Chevrolet.
Equally exciting was the introduction of the new Corvette Daytona Prototype in late 2011. The DP Corvette, a prototype racing car, paid visual homage to the legendary 1960’s-era Corvette Grand Sport racers, proved itself a serious contender on the track as well. It made its debut run at the 24 Hours of Daytona, and would prove itself throughout the season, winning a total of eight events in regular season racing, including a 1-2 finish in only the DP Corvette’s second outing at the Barber Motorsports Complex in Birmingham, Alabama.
As the old saying goes, “win on Sunday, sell on Monday”, and Chevrolet knew that having winning race cars at the track would translate into increased sales of their production car variants. And while the C6 Corvette was now entering its eighth year of production, the model still continued to turn heads and flare imaginations around the globe. Despite this, however, Chevrolet had seen a decline in their beloved sport car since the introduction of the sixth-generation Corvette in 2005.