Watch: Chevy C8 Corvette Huffs Nitrous, Drag Races Supra, Breaks Axle
Laughing gas causes a serious problem.
LG Motorsports is an outfit in Texas that specializes in Corvettes, and with 2020 Chevrolet Corvettes trickling out of dealerships and into owners' hands, it's no surprise that LG's shop already has a C8 to play with. This particular Vette didn't stay stock for long, having been fitted with what LG describes as the first dedicated nitrous oxide kit from Nitrous Express for the C8's LT2 V-8. So, naturally, LG did what any of us would do next: Headed to the drag strip to see what the nitrous-fed Corvette could do in the quarter-mile.
Things went dodgy from there. The 'Vette ran its passes at the TX2K20 event at Houston Raceway Park, and the first run, the company says, happened without nitrous. The car ran a 12.11 at 118 mph, lining up against a new Toyota Supra.
The second run, also in that video above, didn't go so hot—or, depending on your point of view, went too hot—with the nitrous on. LG says the car wouldn't shift out of second gear until they backed off the nitrous, and the car didn't end up doing much better than the no-nitrous run. The third pass, though, was the one that broke this C8.
Bypassing the transmission issue, the driver waited until the car had shifted into second to hit the nitrous—but instead of a quicker pass, the passenger-side rear axle let go at what looks like the outer CV joint. Crippled, the LG Corvette needed to leave the strip on a flatbed tow truck.
What have we learned? That the outer CV joint might be a potential problem for anyone looking to drag-race an upgraded C8 with more power than stock. That said, another nitrous-huffing C8 detailed by our friends at Hot Rod made it into the mid-10s running a different nitrous setup and some aftermarket wheels and tires without lunching its axles, so maybe the component itself isn't the problem. Time, and more passes, will tell us if the stock axles are really a weak point.
Meanwhile, we found another video of a different red C8 at a strip lined up against a 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500. That car did a bit better, with a best pass (sans nitrous) of 11.51 seconds. Chalk some of the difference up to conditions, some to driver skill. Watch the video to see how it fared against the GT500. Also, we expect this is just the tip of the iceberg. As more C8s make their way into the hands of experienced drag racers, we should get a better sense of what the C8 can do in the quarter bone stock, and also how far you can push the platform with aftermarket parts. It's a pretty good time to be alive if you're a Corvette fanatic.