Car Talk: Fastest 'Vette Ever Will Pace 2012 Race

The last time Chevrolet showcased Corvettes at the Indy 500, in 2008, the emphasis was on alternative energy, with an ethanol-fueled Z06, and history, with a special 30th-anniversary edition car. Yawn.

This year, Chevy is giving us something to get excited about: speed.

IMS just announced today that the official pace car for the 96th running of the Indianapolis 500 will be the smokin’ hot 2013 Corvette ZR1, touted as the fastest ride ever made by the American carmaker.

Unless you’re one of the lucky few who have ridden in the ZR1 (they start at around $100,000), you might have difficulty imagining just how fast a 638-horsepower engine can scoot. So let us help you: Count to four. If you were driving a ZR1, you’d be traveling at well over 60 mph, and you’d still have 140 mph to play with before burying the needle.

IMS has yet to announce which lucky celebrity will take the wheel of this barely legal sportster, but AutoWeek.com is reporting that chef Guy Fieri (recently in town for Super Bowl XLVI festivities) is a likely candidate.


Photo by Chris Jones, courtesy IMS

Since first joining Indianapolis Monthly in 2000, West has written about a wide range of subjects including crime, history, arts and entertainment, pop culture, politics, and food. His feature stories have twice been noted in the Best American Sports Writing anthology and have received top honors from the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. “The Collapse,” West’s account of the 2011 Indiana State Fair tragedy, was a 2013 National City and Regional Magazine Awards finalist in the category of Best Reporting. He lives on the near-east side.