Half-clad, red car is often seen frolicking about. Five-spoke wheels look like Camaro ZL1 1LE rims.

Looks like there’s a new ration of ZR1 pics ricocheting around the web. This time, along with half clad, red prototypes, we get a glimpse of the interior.  And here’s the kicker, it has an automatic transmission! WOW! AutoGuide brings us the story.

The slush box got tongues a waggin’ because of the speculation the ZR1 would follow the lead of the Camaro ZL1 1LE and be available only with a DIY transmission. Additionally, motor press scribes announced the ZR1 would utilize the newly introduced 10-speed automatic , already offered on the top end Camaro as we write this.

Think of the super C7 as mostly carry over body, refreshed from A-pillar forward. And a big stinkin’ wing.

And they’d be wrong.

Rarely does tip-of-the-spear hardware debut in the Camaro, like the 10-speed automatic did a few months ago. Usually, GM’s advanced gear debuts on the big kahuna race horse–Corvette–and then trickles down to the pony.

According to our sources, The 10-speed automatic will not fit the C7’s architecture. That’s why it debuted in it’s more accommodating sibling, Camaro.

Also, it looks increasingly like the ZR1 will rely heavily on trim additions to differentiate it, visually from it’s lesser stablemates. Aside from the big displacement –2650cc or better–blower and expected 750-800hp, functional scoops, wings and cosmetic additions will be leveraged heavily to elevate the ZR1 to top-of-the-heap status.

The carbon fiber gods swathed the cabin in glossy goodness.

Not to worry, we here at Corvette Online are going out on a limb and declaring the following stats of the new ZR1 are as follows:

  • Pushrod, supercharged, LT V-8 engine–with big displacement 2650cc blower–with 750-800 horsepower. We aren’t saying that a DOHC motor isn’t on the way, we just think it’ll debut as a “double-whammy” with mid-engine model.
  • Running gear upgrades mirroring Camaro ZL1 1LE – Multimatic shocks, bigger sway bars, revised, track focused suspension tweaks, and sticky, gumball Goodyear rubber.
  • Active Aero – we’ll see two versions of this “heat soak” killer technology. We’ve all seen the “big wing, little wing” mules in the videos so expect two flavors of high tech cooling plumage to choose from.
  • Revised styling from A-pillar forward including hi-rise hood bulge, revise front fascia and unique from fender vent/badging.
  • Braking is where the ZR1 and 1LE Camaro sibling will diverge. Count on the ZR1 to have the Z07 carbon disc brakes as standard equipment, while little brother pony car relies solely on non-ceramic Brembo brakes.
  • Interior will mostly be carry over but with specific badging and all of the bespoke factory options we’ve come to expect over the last few years. Evidently a more liberal dollop of carbon fiber in the cabin can be expected.
  • Available in Coupe or Convertible
  • Manual or eight-speed automatic transmission available.

A little birdy told us GM’s ten-speed transmission WON’T fit in C7 architecture. Just sayin’.

Lastly, there has been much speculation about when the ZR1 will debut.

We say the earliest the car will debut is at the North American International Auto Show, the first week of 2018 as a 2019 model.

While Chevrolet is tight lipped and quiet, the itinerary of the Corvette’s Bowling Green assembly plant speaks loud and clear.

Hey good lookin’…

The plant is currently shut down to install a new paint facility, reopening November 1st of this year.  Perfect timing for ZR1 as production will resume just in time for the car to make the aforementioned gala debut in Motown.

Bowling Green will be off limits to visitors and tours unit the end of 2018. By that time, the alleged doubling of factory floor space and the addition of a new line to build a mid-engine Corvette and/or Cadillac will commence and debut, again, in Detroit 2019 as 2020 model.

Pics Courtesy of AutoBlog.com

Is that Shamu’s tail?