Another year, another edition of Motor Trend’s “Best Driver’s Car” competition. This year, the 2019 C7 Corvette ZR1 is on deck to represent not just Chevrolet, but General Motors as a whole.
Twelve cars will fight for dignity as Randy Pobst and a slew of judges climb behind the wheel to choose one, and only one, best-driving car for 2019. The 2019 C7 Corvette ZR1 certainly has the credentials on paper. It packs 755 horsepower from a 6.2-liter LT5 supercharged V8 engine, a track-focused ZTK performance package with a massive wing, aero trickery providing 950 pounds of downforce and Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires to (try to) ensure traction.
Not all was well after hot laps, however. Pobst commented that with five days and 10 sets of tires, he could shave another second off of the Corvette ZR1’s time. But BDC doesn’t have that kind of time, which left the Corvette as a beast untamed. Judges found the traction control system overwhelmed, with one judge commenting, “I never, ever, trust the rear.” Another called it a “nerve-wracking ride.” Others lamented a slow-shifting eight-speed automatic transmission.
On the plus side, the Corvette ZR1 drew great praise for its braking performance, and it appears Chevy’s brute may have been the best-sounding car at the competition.
The overwhelming amount of power sent to the rear wheels that seems to have handicapped the Corvette here is all the more case for a mid-engine Corvette. Thankfully, such a car is coming, and we’ll be curious to see how it will perform in comparison to the traditional front-engine Corvette we’ve known so well for decades.
We don’t have the car’s official time around the track, but it wasn’t the quickest. MT said even if Pobst had shaved another second off of the final time, the Corvette ZR1 would still be 1.5 seconds behind the competition’s current leaders.