Rated at 898 horsepower and 772 pound-feet of torque, the balanced and blueprinted small-block engine was built at Callaway Cars using a four-bolt main NASCAR-spec GM “Bowtie” engine block fitted with Mahle pistons on forged connecting rods, a special cam to enable both street and high-speed driving and Brodix aluminum heads. Extensive research and engineering was required to efficiently package the engine and twin Turbonetics TO4B turbochargers, matching intercoolers, plus extensive plumbing, below.
Carroll Smith tuned the Corvette’s suspension for high speed stability, relocating the lower control arms and reducing the car’s ride height by one-inch. Koni shocks were used in conjunction with 17-inch Dymag aluminum wheels fitted with Goodyear tires developed specifically for the high-speed record runs.
Inside the Paul Deutschman-designed Callaway Aerobody is a mostly stock interior modified with a leather-padded roll bar, five-point harnesses and custom engine-monitoring instruments. Yet they were able to keep the factory air conditioning and sound systems!
In 2013 the Sledgehammer was inducted into the Bloomington Gold Great Hall – “Recognizes 50 people and 50 Corvettes that significantly influenced the Corvette Phenomenon” – a great honor for one of the world’s great high-performance Corvettes.
The Sledgehammer, currently in the Richard Berry Callaway Collection, will cross the block at the Mecum Auction, Kissimmee, FL, January 17-26 2014, http://www.mecum.com/index.cfm