Tuesday, March 17, 2009

2010 Chevrolet Camaro Launched; performance and fuel economy figures finally revealed

Now that production started of the all-new Chevrolet Camaro, sales will begin later this month. Even some dealers received the new Chevy, but they're not yet allowed to sell it until GM's official release date.However, to celebrate the launch of the new Camaro, GM release a Camaro site that now includes all the information we already knew about, and new info we were waiting for. It's performance and fuel economy that we wanted to know about this re-born muscle car.As most of you know by now, the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro will be available in three trim-levels including LS, LT and SS. The LS and LT are powered by a 3.6L direct-injected V6 that produces 304 hp and 276 lb-ft of torque, that will hit 60 mph in 6.0 seconds. EPA fuel-economy rating of 18/29 mpg (city/highway). So the new V6 Camaro is not just a lot more powerful than both V6s in the 2010 Ford Mustang or the 2009 Dodge Challenger, but considerably more fuel-efficient.As for the Camaro SS model, two versions of the 6.2L V8 are being offered. The original American 6.2L LS3 V8 with the manual transmission, and an Australian L99 6.2L V8 with Active Fuel Management in automatic models. The LS3 with the manual packs 422 hp and 395 lb-ft of torque, and L99 - automatic also packs 395 lb-ft of torque but with 22 hp less, at 400hp. According to reliable sources, 0-60 time for the Camaro is 4.7 seconds. However, get this, the automatic Camaro SS returns an estimated 16/25 mpg while the manual Camaro SS returns 16/24 mpg. So again, better performance than both Mustang and Challenger V8s.The performance-economy victory for the Camaro might not last long. As the 2010 Mustang is only offering carried-over engines from the last generation 'Stang, which the 4.0L V6 and 4.6L V8 are more than 10 years old now. The 2011 Mustang will get a new 5.0L Coyote V8 with expected 400 hp on tap, and a twin-turbo 3.5 EcoBoost V6 that delivers 355hp, which both engines will increase the Mustang's performance and fuel-economy. Also at 2011, the Challenger will be re-developed to be lighter weight with a re-freshed V6. That should balance things out.What's the best about the Camaro, is price-for-horsepower. Even though the Camaro has the strongest engines in its segment, the Camaro is the cheapest. Both models will be available at dealerships later this month with prices starting at $22,995 for the V6 Camaro and $30,995 for the V8 2010 Camaro SS. That explains the 14,000 pre-orders of the Camaro before it even comes out.So we might not be Camaro fans, but it's just the best muscle cars in the figures. We have to wait to get the keys to all "Big 3 muscle cars" to make a true comparison, and decide which one drives and feels the best. But for now, kudos to GM for making a fantastic muscle cars despite the terrible economic-situation.

Update: In the Camaro website (link below), you can make and configure your own Camaro.

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