The new C8 Corvettes started shipping just a week or so ago, and they’re finally coming out of the woodworks. The new mid-engine sports car is a fresh design with supercar appeal, but the question on everyone’s mind is performance. Will the new platform deliver as promised, or will it fall flat? It didn’t take Carlyle Racing long to answer these questions.
On March 10, 2020 the guys already had their new C8 strapped to the rollers to see what kind of power was possible from the stock combination. Even before the 500 mile break-in period, the ‘Vette made an impressive 440 horsepower and 408 lb-ft of torque with only 20 miles showing on the odometer.
With the C8 off of the rollers, Mark Carlyle, owner of Carlyle Racing, wanted to see if a nitrous bottle would fit in the cargo area. Since he had a used system setting on a shelf, he grabbed the bottle and brackets and set them in the Corvette. One of his employees took advantage of the test fit and snapped a quick picture that was posted online with the caption, “Guys don’t tell Mark D Carlyle about this…” What started as a joke soon turned serious as images of the C8 went viral with a composite Nitrous Outlet bottle dummied up in the car. Mark said, ” After everyone saw the picture, they went crazy. It was at that point I knew we had to spray it.”
Mark made the call to Nitrous Outlet and ordered an LT nitrous plate and then installed it on the C8. The only modifications made were the addition of 100-octane racing fuel, tires, wheels, and 50 horsepower worth of nitrous.
When asked what he thought of the car, Mark said, “I’ve owned C6s and C7s, a few of each in fact, and I love the C8. The guys keep telling me, we need to do this or that, and I’m like come on, I just want to drive the car. It’s killing me. They would rather keep swapping wheels and take pictures than let me drive it.”
Here is one of the many 11.05@126 passes… going for 10’s on motor tomorrow!
Posted by Mark D Carlyle on Monday, March 16, 2020
On March 15, 2020, armed with a set of Forgeline 18×11 beadlock wheels wrapped with 305/40/18 Mickey Thompson tires and a Nitrous Outlet plate system, Mark and crew headed to Marion County Raceway (MRC) to see how fast the C8 was in the 1/4-mile. Naturally aspirated, Mark managed to pilot the C8 to a best of 11.05 at 126mph. When the Nitrous Outlet 50 horsepower system was used, the car went a 10.65 at 130mph while starting to activate the system in second gear through the 1/4-mile. Mark said he didn’t use the nitrous in first gear to preserve the drivetrain on the car, for now.
So what’s in store now for the Carlysle Racing C8?
While being the first C8 in the 10-second zone is pretty cool, they want more. The plan is to head back to MCR and see how much quicker the C8 will go. The guys did change out the sparkplugs this time to a colder set of Brisk plugs and will continue to use 100-octane fuel. After this next outing, Mark has plans to add a Lingenfelter timing controller for even more nitrous.
Mark would like to thank Marion International Raceway for setting up its timing system just for the sake of testing the C8 for Carlyle Racing.
With a 10-second pass already in the books, how long until we see a 9-second C8? You might be surprised.