With the release of the Build and Price Configurator for the 2023 Corvette Z06, each of the CorvetteBlogger writers are sharing their dream builds and then we’ll have a vote-off so you can determine the best Z06 configured. First up is Mitch Talley!
They always say it takes building a few houses to create your perfect dream home.
That adage also applies to dream Corvette Z06s, too.
While in a perfect world, with lots of money to throw around, I would have a 2023 Z06 sitting in my driveway, I’m perfectly content with my 2023 Stingray that I received from our friend Mike Furman on Labor Day weekend.
But since Keith is footing the bill for a Z06 – wink, wink – I figured why not see what my dream Z06 would look like – and at what cost.
Since I grew up in the ’70s and ’80s when Corvettes weren’t very powerful but were some of the most beautiful cars ever built, I’ve always been a bigger fan of the looks than the power. The only time I’ve even been on a track in my Corvette was in 2014 when I served as the captain of the Georgia team for the 20th anniversary of the National Corvette Caravan – one of the highlights of my 39 years of owning a Corvette, for sure. Even then, as I led the pack around the then-new Motorsports Park track, I definitely was holding the others back in my Torch Red ’97.
That’s why my dream build for a new Z06 focuses more on appearance than performance.
My first C8 was a 2020 Stingray coupe – a Torch Red over Adrenaline Red 2LT that I purchased through my son Chris in his final days as a salesman at Carl Black Chevrolet in Kennesaw, Georgia. I thought that was one beautiful car and even carried all the family with me to Bowling Green to pick up the car at the National Corvette Museum. I thought it was going to be my forever Corvette, till the market turned so hot that I couldn’t resist dipping my toe in the water. I wound up selling it on June 2, 2021, and immediately got on the waiting list with Mike Furman.
This time around, though, I made a few changes, and I am absolutely thrilled with my choices – the web photos and build-and-price images simply do not do justice to Hypersonic Gray. If you are looking for a mean-looking Corvette, you need to go see a Hypersonic Gray Stingray in person. I love it!
I had gone with a coupe on my ’20 Stingray because I wanted to enjoy looking at the engine, but on my ’23, I decided that the convenience – and much more exotic appearance – of a hardtop convertible means more to me. While that ugly plastic cover hides my 495-horsepower engine from sight, I don’t regret my decision at all. The black nacelles and roof on my ’23 proved to be a beautiful accent to the Hypersonic Gray paint, and if you’re toying with the “stripe, no stripe” dilemma, let me highly recommend instead the Stingray R Appearance Package – the best $695 I spent on my car, hands down! Photos again don’t do justice to this stripe – which looks so much better in person.
Anyway, I tell you all this to give you an idea of where I’m headed with my Z06 build.
While I didn’t mind covering up the engine in my Stingray, I definitely want the whole world – and me – to see that glorious bespoke jewel of a motor in my Z06 every time I walk past and look at it out the rear window. Therefore, I’m starting out with a 2LZ coupe – in Hypersonic Gray, of course. I love the way the Adrenaline Red interior pops against the HG, but this time, since I’m not paying for it, I chose the upgraded GT2 bucket seats in two-tone black and AR. The sueded microfiber-wrapped steering wheel is a forced buy at $695 with those seats, a choice I’d likely not make unless forced since I’m not a big fan of the suede look.
Since the Z06’s standard performance is more than enough for me, I’m content with the stock tires and don’t see any need for the carbon-fiber wheels or Z07 Performance Package (especially for the cost – you can thank me later, Keith!). I’m content instead with the look of the $495 spider-design black forged aluminum wheels and $695 Bright Red-painted brake calipers.
Along those lines, however, I did splurge for the $8,495 Carbon Flash-Painted Carbon Fiber Carbon Aero Package that really makes the Z06 look a lot meaner, if that’s even possible. However, that package also forces you to pay another $8,495 more for the Performance Brembo Carbon Ceramic Antilock Brakes – which are not necessary for my purposes.
People ask me all the time in my hometown if I’m going to get a Z06, but the truth is that it’s just too much car for me – especially at a drive-out price of $142,050 the way I would want it equipped. The stock Stingray is more than enough for me, and I could even use the spare change to buy a couple of vintage cars, the way I used the proceeds from selling my 2020 Stingray to buy another 1970 Monte Carlo, my first car ever back in 1976 and one of the few cars I’ve regretted losing.
Click here to view Mitch’s Hypersonic Gray Z06 on the Build and Price Configurator.
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