How 2012 Chevy Camaro ZL1 Smokes Aston Martin, Ferrari, and Porsche

By Joel Arellano | September 09, 2011
To some people, there's no such thing as enough, whether it be food, drink, money, or power. Car enthusiasts fall into this category, and automakers tinker constantly to wring the last bit of horsepower from their vehicles' engines. Even the recent CAFE regulations have barely blunted this perpetual search for higher speed and performance. To make the task even more difficult, automakers know Americans want the latest and greatest features in their vehicles (e.g., fuel economy, infotainment) without sacrificing previous ones (horsepower) all preferably at a lower cost. General Motors aims to satisfy this addiction desire with its reborn Chevrolet Camaro brand. Discontinued in 2002, GM floored fans and critics alike with the debut of the all-new, retro-styled 2006 Chevrolet Camaro Concept and 2007 Chevy Camaro Convertible concept. Production versions of the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro coupe rolled onto dealerships and the waiting public's driveways in 2009; the 2011 Chevy Camaro convertible went on sale the following year. The 2012 Chevrolet Camaro base and LT models are powered by a 3.6-liter V-6 that generates more than 320 horsepower, easily a case of overkill for the average American driver. Yet equipped with six-speed automatic, the 2012 Chevy Camaro gets an EPA estimated 18-19 mpg city/29-30 mpg highway and uses regular unleaded gas.
But some enthusiasts want more. For them, Chevrolet also offers the 2012 Chevy Camaro SS, with its 6.2-liter V-8 engine, which blasts out more than 425 hp, and zips the Camaro from zero to 60 mph in less than 4.9 seconds. Still, a select few enthusiasts desire even greater numbers, and turn to tuner houses like Hennessey Performance Motorsports to custom-build their speed demon no matter what the cost. Well, such buyers may want to hold onto their money. General Motors recently unveiled the 2012 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. The Chevy ZL1 comes equipped with a 6.2-liter V-8 that generates a mind-boggling 580 horsepower and 556 lb-ft feet of torque which makes the ZL1 the most powerful stock Camaro available. How powerful? Says Chevrolet Camaro chief engineer Al Oppenheiser, “for sheer power, the ZL1 delivers more horsepower than a Ferrari 458, more torque than an Aston Martin DB9 V12, and a better power-to-weight ratio than a Porsche 911 Carrera GTS.” Still available with a choice of six-speed manual or automatic transmission, the 2012 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 comes equipped with several exclusive technologies as standard. The third-generation Magnetic Ride Control adapts the ZL1's suspension faster than ever to road conditions while the Performance Traction Management system allows customization of the ZL1 traction handling with five different settings. Says Oppenheiser, “By offering five distinct modes of traction management, the driver can select what’s best for them based on their experience and the driving conditions. As a result, novice drivers will find the ZL1 is very enjoyable to drive, while expert drivers will find PTM supplements their driving skill without interfering with their intentions.” Chevrolet has not yet released the pricing of the 2012 Chevy Camaro ZL1 at the time of this post, but our advice is to bring money, and plenty of it. Source: General Motors/Chevrolet