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5 Alternatives to the Chevy Corvette ZR1 You Can Buy Right Now

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author photo by Doug DeMuro November 2017

Earlier this week, I told you about the new 2019 Chevy Corvette ZR1 that Chevy unveiled at the Dubai Auto Show. It's a monster: 755 horsepower, 715 lb-ft of torque, loads of a carbon fiber and an engine that's so large it literally sticks up through the hood. Unfortunately, you won't be able to get it until the spring -- so here's a list of five ZR1 alternatives you can buy to hold you over before the ultimate Corvette goes on sale.

Camaro ZL1

Chevy Camaro ZL1

Don't want to wait for the ultimate Corvette? Here's the ultimate Camaro. The Chevy Camaro ZL1 is truly stunning, with a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 that makes 650 hp and 650 lb-ft of torque -- good for 0-to-60 runs in the mid 3-second range. It's also a lot cheaper than the ZR1, as this brand-new 2018 ZL1 -- a well-optioned model with a convertible top and an automatic transmission -- is just $73,905 at Shottenkirk Chevrolet in Waukee, Iowa. (Chevrolet hasn't announced ZR1 pricing yet, but it'll surely top $100,000 before options.)

Original Chevy Corvette ZR-1

Original Chevy Corvette ZR-1

Ahh, the original ZR-1 -- sort of. Chevy produced a "ZR-1" model for the third-generation Corvette, but only in very limited numbers -- and this is the ZR-1 we all really remember. Offered throughout the early 1990s, this ZR-1 offered 375 hp, which may not seem like much by today's standards -- but it was a huge deal at the time, as the "normal" Corvette had just 245 horses. This particular ZR-1 is as close to a new C4 ZR-1 as you'll ever find: It has just 31 original miles and it's perfectly preserved, with an asking price of $49,995 from Rizza Buick Cadillac GMC in the Chicago area.

Chevy Corvette ZR1 "C6"

Chevy Corvette ZR1 "C6"

While the C4 ZR-1 is appealing, you don't need to go back to the 1990s to buy a ZR1. In fact, the most recent Corvette ZR1 was discontinued only a few years ago -- it's the "C6" ZR1 model, which was sold from 2009 to 2013. Performance is still amazing, as the C6 ZR1 boasts a whopping 638 hp and 604 lb-ft of torque -- a far cry from the new ZR1, sure, but good for some amazing track performance and a 0-to-60 time of something like 3.4 seconds. This particular ZR1 is a rare "Inferno Orange" model -- one of just 69 built, according to the ad -- and it's offered by Hilson Luxury Motors in the Atlanta suburb of Marietta, Georgia.

Dodge Viper ACR

Dodge Viper ACR

The Dodge Viper ACR is the closest you can come to a new ZR1 without actually buying a new ZR1. The formula is virtually identical: A massive engine up front (in this case, a V10 with 645 hp and 600 lb-ft), a huge wing in back and tremendous acceleration and track capabilities. This is one of the nicest ACR models on Autotrader -- a rare "GTS-R" version with just 7 original miles, available for $199,000 from a seller in Florida -- but cheaper ones are available, too. And let's be honest: The Dodge Viper is just a little more exotic than the Chevy Corvette.

Shelby GT350R

Shelby GT350R

The Shelby GT350R is one of my favorite cars I've driven in 2017. One reason is the sound, as it's both hilariously loud and excellent in quality and tone. Another reason is the handling: I'm stunned how precise and sporty the GT350R feels in virtually all situations; sitting in this car, it's hard to believe you're driving a Mustang. And then, of course, there's the performance: 526 hp, 429 lb-ft of torque and a 0-to-60 time of under 4 seconds. The only problem is finding one: Demand has driven up prices, as this example shows; it's a new, 2018 GT350R offered by Koons Ford in the D.C. area with a $30,000 markup to $99,395.

Doug DeMuro is an automotive journalist who has written for many online and magazine publications. He once owned a Nissan Cube and a Ferrari 360 Modena. At the same time.

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
5 Alternatives to the Chevy Corvette ZR1 You Can Buy Right Now - Autotrader