2011 Q2 Callaway of the Quarter

BigJohn's Callaway - C16-002 (C16-Z06#001)

There is an old proverb that says that patience is a bitter plant with a very sweet fruit. I can't think of better words to describe the story behind the making of this stunning and most unique Callaway C16.

The Callaway C16 is a bespoke Automobile, handcrafted to the buyer's specifications. Shortly after the debut of the Callaway C16 at the 2006 LA Auto Show, John Christensen (Big John) stepped up to task of raising the bar on this bespoke supercar by commissioning C16-002 which is the first Z06 based Callaway C16. However, at the time the car was ordered, Callaway hadn’t developed their package for the 7.0 Liter engine found in the Z06. Patience…

With an opportunity to show off the styling of the C16 body at the 2007 Montreal Auto Show, C16-002 received a temporary body to be exhibited at that show and then again that year during the Corvettes at Carlisle show. Then began what would be a long but what resulted in a very rewarding wait. It would not be until early 2009 when the new TVS-2300 supercharger would be validated for the then-new LS3 engine and later adapted for the LS7 engine package in 2010.

The skilled craftsmen at Callaway put a tremendous amount of work into each Callaway C16. The car is literally stripped down to a rolling chassis; body panels, engine, and interior are removed. Every piece of the interior is cataloged, packaged, and shipped to Germany for recovering per the color and materials selected by the customer.

The exhaust is replaced with the trademark Callaway Double-D exhaust. The adjustable coil-over suspension is added and the brakes replaced with the Callaway Big Brake system. The C16 body is then added, shimmed, adjusted, and then again removed for painting. The fuel system replaced and the supercharger (Chrome or black-crinkle painted) is added. Carbon Fiber injector covers added, and the new interior complete with wool carpeting is installed.

Only then, is the painted body is refitted, shimmed, and adjusted. Finally the Carbon-Magnesium wheels are added. The C16 build process may take 4-6 months or longer and is obviously completely done by hand. Due to the large amount of disassembly, all aspects of the C16 build are double (if not triple) checked. With the standard production build pipeline at Callaway including dealer sold Corvette, Camaro, and now SportTrucks, one person primarily builds the C16 though the other Callaway models employ a team during stages of the assembly process.

Fast-forward to April 2011. After a long wait on a stunning and unique C16, the final pre-delivery inspection takes place personally by Callaway's Managing Director, Mike Zoner. C16-002, currently the one and only Z06 based C16 is now finally delivered to a jubilant Big John.

Featuring many unique elements not previously seen on any other C16: 652HP supercharged 7.0L engine, Z06 aluminum frame, Ultrasonic Blue Mica exterior, first Black Chrome supercharger, C16 Speedster front grill slats, patterned stitched seat and door Alcantara inserts, this is truly a magnificent Callaway - and wickedly fast.

Congratulations Big John!

About this Callaway C16:

7.0L Supercharged 652HP engine, 620 lb-ft torque
Chrome-coat Supercharger finish
Callaway/Eibach adjustable Suspension
Callaway Dymag Carbon/Magnesium Wheel Package
Callaway Carbon Fiber Hood bulge
Callaway Big Brake package
Callaway C16 body
Callaway Deutschleder Leather Interior
Callaway Steering Wheel package