The Chevrolet Camaro sports coupe concept is currently on display at the 2007 Melbourne International Motor Show. Whilst there is really no word on if it will be made for Australian roads, it is confirmed for production and sale in North America in the first quarter of 2009. Holden is quick to point out that this American icon has taken significant elements of engineering and design work from GM’s centre of rear wheel drive expertise at Fishermans Bend, Melbourne.
GM global design executive Tony Stolfo said Camaro was a prime example of GM’s ability to successfully work across continents on global projects. He said Camaro’s Australian debut was also a great opportunity to gauge the Australian motoring public’s appetite for the iconic sports legend.
“ Chevrolet Camaro’s engineering and design work is happening right here, right now, at Fishermans Bend, we are very excited about helping style the look and developing the thrilling drive performance that are hallmarks of this iconic nameplate.
“We also want to see whether Australian buyers would want a Chevrolet Camaro in local dealerships. This motor show is an excellent opportunity to put that appetite to the test.” Mr Stolfo said.
Current estimates suggest that the all-new Chevrolet Camaro will begin with early production versions towards the end of 2008 and eventually go on sale come first quarter of 2009. Furthermore, there are plans for a convertible model will be added towards the end of 2009.
“The new Camaro will be almost identical to the concept, a thoroughly modern interpretation of the 1969 model, considered by many to be the best design of the car’s first generation,” said Ed Welburn, GM’s global vice president of design.
The Camaro is a true sports car, with a front-engine, rear-wheel-drive setup, the Camaro has an independent rear suspension, and will be offered in a variety of models with the choice of manual and automatic transmissions and V-6 and V-8 engines.
“We intend to make the all-new Camaro relevant to younger buyers while retaining its appeal to current fans. The beauty of the best Camaros is that they have always been beautiful to look at with performance that rivals expensive European GTs. Yet they were practical enough to drive every day and priced within the reach of many new-car buyers.” Chevrolet General Manager Ed Peper
The prominent front grille and hood bulge hint at the power of the Corvette-inspired V-8 engine. Large wheels and tyres, exposed high-performance brakes and prominent fender shapes signal that the Camaro Concept has the handling and braking to go with the powertrain.
The Camaro Concept comes with the best that GM has to offer, with the legendary small-block V-8. The 6.0-liter LS2 engine features an aluminum block and heads for light weight, and Active Fuel Management™, which shuts off four cylinders to save fuel when the engine is lightly loaded (similar to that found in the Chrysler 300C).
So how much power does it have? The LS2 is rated at 400 horsepower (298kW). The Camaro Concept’s six-speed manual transmission provides a wide spread of ratios for aggressive acceleration off the line, confident passing and merging and efficient highway cruising.
Holden agrees that American cars are no longer just about straight-line speed, so the Camaro Concept features a sophisticated rear-wheel drive chassis. Its independent front and rear suspension features progressive-rate springs and gas-pressurized dampers. Four-wheel vented disc brakes with 14-inch rotors provide confident stopping under all conditions.
Enhancing both the performance and appearance of the Camaro Concept are unique five-spoke cast alloy wheels, 21 inches in the front and 22 inches in the rear.