The brand new, $119,995 C7 ZR1 was launched wearing outrageous Sebring Orange paint, mostly to make sure it grabs attention through even the tiniest of mobile device screens. Yet the deal with shouty color is always the same: People keep asking for them, only to choose any shade of black once the product lands at the dealerships. It's no wonder design teams find it hard to convince their bosses about the market feasibility of colors such as GM's Velocity Yellow.
Talking about Corvette colors with Chief of Design Tom Peters and Chief Engineer Tadge Juechter, we soon landed on the topic of yellow ZR1s. Mostly because Tadge ended up getting one, unexpectedly.
According to , of the 15 paint colors applied to the C6 ZR1, only three were available for the full five-year model run: Blade Silver, Cyber Gray, and Velocity Yellow. Black, of course, was the most popular hue, even though it was unavailable for 2012. Gray did well, being the most popular choice after black with 949 units sold. On the other hand, yellow has only managed to grab 272 customers' attention in five years, beating silver by three cars.
Tadge Juechter has been with GM since 1977, becoming Corvette Chief Engineer in 2006. Velocity Yellow wasn't originally his number one choice, but that all changed once he saw one on the assembly line at Bowling Green. From that point on, it was yellow ZR1 or nothing for the Corvette boss. For a while, it looked like he'd have to settle for the latter: General Motors allocated only two C6 ZR1s for its employees, and both got snatched up by executives long before the engineer could raise a hand.
In the end though, it all worked out. The main man behind the Corvette program managed to find himself a ZR1 painted Velocity Yellow—though he said it wasn't easy—while GM ended up selling 4684 of the range-topping 'Vettes between 2009 and 2013.
Also, since some people mistook the range-topping C6's rather expensive clear hood window panel for a cheap piece of polycarbonate, the C7 ZR1 comes with something even bolder, made of carbon fiber. Match it with a Corvette Racing Yellow exterior, and we're in business.