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Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 will be Indy 500 pace car

Tue, 08 May 2012

The 2013 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 will be the pace car for this year's Indianapolis 500--a fitting victory lap as the current sixth-generation Corvette heads for the end of its production run and the end of this version of the ZR1.

The Indy pace-car Corvette will wear the 60th-anniversary trim package--an arctic white exterior with silver stripes down the center of the car and a blue interior with suede leather coverings on the steering wheel, center console and in the seats. Changes for the pace car include only the addition of a light bar on the roof, some racing-safety equipment and race logos.

Chevy says it will not produce pace-car replicas for public sale.

An overhead view of the 2013 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 Indy pace car.

The Corvette ZR1's supercharged 6.2-liter V8 is rated at 638 hp. Use of carbon fiber in the front fenders, hood, floor pan and rocker panels helps keep curb weight at a low 3,353 pounds. This translates to 5.2 pounds per horsepower.

The 2012 race will mark the 11th time that a Corvette has been used as the Indy 500 pace car. The first time a Corvette paced the race was the 1978 model, which marked the car's 25th anniversary.

A celebrity driver for the pace car will be named later; that person is expected to be chef Guy Fieri.

By Dale Jewett