Earlier this year, we discovered the possibility of a Tremec 7-speed dual clutch transmission going into the next generation Corvette, but recent leaks show that the mid-engine Chevy might get something even more exotic. for the C8 Corvette shows that it will be equipped with an 8-speed dual clutch transmission. That puts the Tremec box out of contention.
There are not many 8-speed dual clutch transmissions currently available that can be used in a mid-engine configuration and handle the Corvette's massive torque, but the new ZF 8DT, which recently hit the market in a variety of VW products including the Porsche Panamera and Bentley Continental, could be a good match for the new Corvette. This is a replacement for its 7-speed predecessor, the 7DT, which was installed in the Panamera, 911, and, perhaps most interestingly, the 918 Spyder.
That's because the 918 has an engine and transmission configuration that is similar to leaked CAD drawings of the mid-engine Corvette. They show a clear match between the ZF 7DT-75 that was installed in the Porsche 918 and the gearbox on in the upcoming Corvette. The case on the transmission in the CAD image appears to be very similar if not the same as the 918 with the upper mount located in the same position.
Using the 8DT also opens up an easier path for a potential hybrid variant. It was designed to be easily adaptable to hybrid applications with a compact electric motor that can be installed directly into the housing. They’ve already deployed a hybrid version in the Panamera e-hybrid,
Although an 8DT has not been shown with a similar case yet, ZF has stated that one of its advantages is that it is configurable for multiple applications. That means it is likely that they can reconfigure the new transmission much like they did with the 7DT in the 918 Spyder. This transmission might seem a little too exotic for the Corvette at first, but it is planned for use in a variety of applications. Its predecessor was fairly common and was used in a variety of Porsches. The main difference in the 918's variant versus the others is some custom gears. It was also rotated 180 degrees to improve packaging and the center of gravity.
According to ZF's website, the 8DT is rated for a maximum of 738 lb-ft of torque, which is likely plenty for the speculated LT2 base engine of the upcoming Corvette. It should even be enough for higher trim levels. The current top engine choice in the Corvette, the LT5 in the ZR1, produces 715 lb-ft of torque.
We reached out to ZF and GM to verify the information and a representative for GM stated that they do not comment on potential future production plans while a representative for ZF stated that they do not discuss future plans of customers.