Corvette blows up rear differential

It's an odd feeling when you press down the accelerator and you hear a snap followed by increasing rpm. All automotive enthusiasts that get into high power performance have either experienced this feeling or will experience it in the future. There is an odd calm that overtakes your mind and body, followed by stress of the unknown. What just happened? How much is this going to cost? These are many questions that will pop into your head seconds after a mechanical failure. There are many things that can go wrong when you start building for performance, and typically the drive train is what fails first.

When people build vehicles for power, they usually forget about upgrading the drive train to take the extra power. That's not as fun as going for big numbers. I've personally busted transmissions, blown gears, differentials, and more. It's all part of building fast cars. However, we as automotive builders should spend more time building up the drive train. That's what we should do, but we don't. Why you may ask? Because if the part is going to be replaced in the long run, let's just use it until it breaks; and then upgrade!

It sounds backwards, but this is a very cost effective form of identifying the weak points in your build. As you use the vehicle for performance intentions, weak points will show their ugly little faces. Depending on usage, your weak point could be drive train, suspension, or engine internals. Engine internals are the ones to be extremely concerned about, because when they go out they take other parts with them. Some items such as forged pistons, rods, rings, valves, lifters, springs, and crankshafts should be upgraded ahead of destruction to avoid costly engine repair.

In the following video you can see a C6 Corvette owner identifying his weakest point, the differential. After a nice warm up burn, he tries to launch at too high of an RPM and literally snaps the differentials apart. Differential fluid immediately starts pouring out all over the track. It's pretty obvious what happened here, and we all know what upgrades are next! Some look at this as a terrible scenario, but I prefer to look at it positively. Anytime a part breaks, it's a valid excuse to upgrade to stronger, purpose built parts!

Video content: C6 Corvette differential failure

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Source: Tampa Sports Car Examiner

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