Announced in 1989 but not sold unitl model-year 1990, Chevy’s exciting new Corvette ZR-1 showed a wider tail with squared off rear lights, ultra-wide tires and an amazing new twin-cam 350 V-8 with 375 horses. Its new six-speed manual gearbox was shared with the basic ‘Vette.
Corvette XR-1’s 350 (5.7-liter) “LT-5” V-8 was an all new, all aluminum design with port fuel injection adn twin overhead cams on each cylinder bank working a total of 32 valves. A special dual induction system with electronic control featured a “valet” key that locked out ultimate power for unauthorized, read: less experienced, users.
The ZR-1 actually was a $31,683 option package making for a ‘Vette coupe that listed or $59,000. But some rabid speculators paid double that for early examples.