I Am Quietly Obsessed With This V6 Corvette

Illustration for article titled I Am Quietly Obsessed With This V6 Corvette
Screenshot: 1320 Video

One of the fastest cars in the world at the moment is a Chevrolet Corvette with a V6 under the hood. Which V6, I wondered, like so many of you at this very moment. As it turns out, it’s a unique one, one with a bit of story behind it.

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Illustration for article titled I Am Quietly Obsessed With This V6 Corvette
Screenshot: 1320 Video

This is the Outlaw 10.5 class world record holder, a class that is for cars that are sort of stock-like, but not really, but not totally custom, but rather somewhere in the middle. Drag racing is complicated, and I do not seek to understand it. All I know is that this is a fully custom build made to look like a C6 Corvette, with a roughly stock wheelbase, front frame rails and doors.

Illustration for article titled I Am Quietly Obsessed With This V6 Corvette
Screenshot: 1320 Video

Also custom: the engine. You can see that it’s labeled a ‘KH’ engine, but I imagine that has more to do with the initials of its owner, Sheikh Khalid bin Hamad Al-Thani, than anything else. It started life as a hemi V8 from the States, but became V6'd for racing in Qatar, as Speedhunters explained early last year:

What started life as an AJPE 5300 Hemi Billet Block V8 was transformed into a 559ci (around 9.0 litres) V6 by removing the front two cylinders.

The now six-cylinder block was mated to a custom 5.3 bore space cylinder head and a Speedtech intake. I believe the reason behind running a six cylinder in the first place is to take advantage of a rule which allows non-intercooled six cylinder ‘alcohol’ cars to have no minimum weight limit.

In any case, the car now makes four-figure power and earlier this month dusted off the 1/8th mile in 3.85 seconds at 201 miles per hour. What’s enjoyable is the sound the car makes, two huge turbochargers boosting its six cylinders. If a R35 GT-R sounds strange, this sounds truly bizarre.

And I think it’s an interesting car at the moment. A twin-turbo Corvette is probably on the way, a mid-engine Corvette, maybe a reevaluation of what a Corvette is. Whenever it comes out, whatever it is, I will enjoy keeping this very strange V6 Corvette in my mind.

Raphael Orlove is features editor for Jalopnik.

DISCUSSION

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I’m having a hard time taking “chopped off the front two cylinders” at face value.

How is this even possible? I’m assuming that what actually happened was that it’s custom block that’s machined out of 1 piece of metal. Then it was redesigned to be a v6 by “chopping” the front two cylinders out of the 3D model before being sent to the CNC.