The 2009 Chevrolet Camaro SS is based on GM’s Zeta platform, which underpins Australia’s Holden Commodore and the new Pontiac GTO as well as the Pontiac G8. The Zeta platform was designed from the start to be adaptable, and so far it looks as if it’s going to spread through most of GM’s brands.
Camaro Concept recaptures the spirit of one of the most popular sport coupes of all time and redefines the Camaro for new generations of fans. The Camaro Concept embodies the performance and passion that have made first-generation Camaros some of the most sought-after collector cars, updating the formula with a fuel-efficient powertrain, sophisticated chassis and contemporary design execution.
Elements such as a forward-V shape at the front of the car and “gills” in the rear quarter panels are distinctly Camaro cues, as are the broad rear fender “shoulders.” Those elements make the new Camaro instantly recognizable, but their execution is smoothly integrated into the contemporary exterior form. A family of large, 18-, 19- and 20-inch wheels also contributes to the Camaro’s modern appearance. The long hood, short deck and wide stance of the Camaro Concept leave no doubt that it is a serious performance car. Those looks are backed up by a 400-horsepower aluminum small-block V-8, a six-speed manual transmission, and a sophisticated chassis with four-wheel independent suspension.
Like its forebears, the Camaro Concept would be practical enough for everyday use. It features fuel-saving features like Active Fuel Management cylinder deactivation technology, yielding highway fuel economy of 30 mpg or better. Its overall size is a comfortable fit for city streets and suburban parking lots, and its back seat provides occasional seating for two adults.
The standard V6 model will use the 3.6 liter version of GM’s global V6, tuned to between 240 horsepower and 260 horsepower, while the V8 option will most likely be the 6.2 liter version of the GEN VI with around 400 horsepower. But GM is also currently working on a direct injection version of the V8, gaining more horsepower while increasing fuel economy from between three to six percent. That engine may well make an appearance in the Camaro, either in the standard car or the SS model.
The new car will feature multi link independent rear suspension and there will be choices of manual and automatic gearboxes, as well as V6 and V8 engines. The gearboxes will likely be the same six speed manual and six speed auto found in the Holden Commodore.
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. 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.
The same purposeful design is reflected in the interior of the Camaro Concept. The gauges and splash of orange trim hint at classic first-generation Camaros, but the overall design and execution reflect the no-nonsense functionality that drivers expect from a high-performance Chevrolet sports car.
“The new Chevrolet Camaro delivers a thoroughly modern, advanced package of performance, comfort and technology,” said Peper. “It’s a sports car for a new generation of enthusiasts that doesn’t forget the heritage that helped make the original a cultural icon . That is no small feat and it took a worldwide commitment to achieve it.”