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Chevy Cobalt SS Supercharged Smokes Competition at Toyo Tires Time Attack

FWD Cobalt finishes with fastest time overall besting AWD, FWD and RWD competitors

BUTTONWILLOW, Calif. – The Chevrolet Cobalt SS Supercharged continued its Time Attack assault at Buttonwillow Raceway Park on Nov. 8, finishing with the fastest time overall (1:51) and first in the Front Engine Front Drive (FF) Unlimited Class at the Toyo Tires Time Attack presented by Super Street and eurotuner magazines. It is the second fastest time ever for a Time Attack run at Buttonwillow and eclipses the previous records set for FF Unlimited (1:57) and all-wheel-drive (AWD) Limited (1:54) classes.

Race-prepared by GM Performance Division for FF Unlimited Time Attack competition and driven by current SCCA driving champion John Heinricy, the Front-Wheel-Drive (FWD) Cobalt SS Supercharged bested more than 50 competitors driving such established AWD racecars as the Nissan Skyline and Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution among others, and was one of only three domestic entries along with the Ford Mustang and Dodge Neon.

“Our team was outstanding and this win is further proof of the credentials GM Performance Division and Chevy are building with the street tuner crowd for the Cobalt SS and its Ecotec engine,” said Heinricy, director of High Performance Vehicle Operations for GM Performance Division. “The competition was tough, but the graciousness in defeat shown by Tarzan Yamada, one of the preeminent drivers in Japanese street racing, was very telling as to how far GM has come in a relatively short period of time.”

Based on Chevy’s new factory-built FWD “tuner” car, the Cobalt SS Supercharged was also chronicled on the SPEED Channel’s Street Tuner Challenge during its 13-week build in preparation for the show’s Time Attack event on July 21. In that contest, the Cobalt bested an 801 hp twin-turbo Nissan Skyline and a nitrous-charged Volkswagen Jetta by seven and 15 seconds respectively with a posted time of 1:58 on Buttonwillow’s #13 track configuration.

The Cobalt SS Supercharged has largely maintained its production roots from a parts standpoint, but was further tuned in preparation for the Nov. 8 event, including an added nitrous boost increasing the horsepower to 380 and torque to 387 lb.-ft. among other aerodynamic improvements and chassis tuning.

The premise behind Time Attack is to take a street vehicle and – using DOT approved tires – turn in the fastest lap on a racetrack for the vehicle class. The vehicle must be from a model originally produced for legal street use and it must have a silhouette largely faithful to the original.

The Cobalt SS Supercharged has strong performance credentials in factory trim. Powered by a supercharged and intercooled 205-horsepower, 2.0-liter Ecotec DOHC four-cylinder engine and equipped with a finely-tuned suspension developed on Germany’s famed Nurburgring race track, the production Cobalt SS Supercharged has brought more heat to the already red-hot sport compact segment, and has been quite a dealer draw since its introduction in late 2004.

GM Performance Division in collaboration with Chevrolet, GM Powertrain, GM Performance Parts and GM Design created the Cobalt SS for Time Attack competition to demonstrate the ultimate capabilities of the Ecotec engine. Time Attack challenges involve multiple runs, so the engine must be powerful and durable.

The engine features an Eaton M-62 Gen 5 Hybrid supercharger, and delivers 283 horsepower at 6840 rpm and 243 lb.-ft. of torque at 4200 rpm without the nitrous. It is also Stage 2+ equipped, using a smaller pulley than the Stage 2 kit available soon through GM Performance Parts to achieve even greater torque.

Some of the production Cobalt elements were replaced with carbon fiber counterparts, including the hood, doors, roof, decklid, rear wing, side rocker extensions and Sparco car seat. The vehicle’s glass has also been replaced with Lexan, and interior trim has been kept to a minimum. The end result is a vehicle weighing a mere 2,350 pounds.

Powell Motorsport, Lotus Engineering and Martin Technologies provided GM Performance Division with vehicle preparation, logistical support and engineering collaboration for the Toyo Tires Time Attack event.

Chevy Cobalt SS Supercharged Time Attack Unlimited Specifications

Body/chassis structure: Unibody
Body material: Two sided galvanized steel; carbon fiber doors, hood, decklid, rear wing, front and side rocker extensions, roof
Chassis material: Two sided galvanized steel, carbon fiber roof

 

Suspension  
Front: Macpherson strut, no front bar, increased spring rates, Ohlins double adjustable struts
Rear: Twisting beam with adjustable sway bar, increased spring rate, Ohlins double adjustable shocks
Wheels: 9.5 x 17
Tire size  
Front: 245/40R17
Rear: Same as front
Tire brand: Hoosier DOT
Brakes: 310 x 26 - vented discs front

270 x 14 - solid discs rear

Powertrain  
Engine: Stage 2+ equipped 2.0L ECOTEC LSJ with Eaton M-62 Gen 5 Hybrid supercharger, larger injectors and 77.9 mm pulley
Engine displacement (cu. in / cc): 122 / 2000
Horsepower maximum (hp): 283 @ 6840 rpm

380 @ 6700 rpm with nitrous

Torque maximum (lb.-ft.): 243 @ 4200 rpm

387 @ 3500 rpm with nitrous

Transmission: F35 5-speed manual with 4.45 final drive
Dimensions  
Height (inches): 55.7
Length (inches): 180.3
Width (inches): 67.9
Wheelbase (inches): 103.3
Track  
Front / rear (inches): 57.1 / 58.1 nominal
Weight (lbs / kg): 2350 / 1066