• 2013 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Convertible with 580 horsepower.
  • 2013 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Convertible with 580 horsepower.
  • 2013 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Convertible with 580 horsepower.
  • 2013 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Convertible with 580 horsepower.
General Motors has announced that the world's most powerful production droptop* – the 2013 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Convertible – will officially debut at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show in November. Like its coupe kin, the ZL1 Convertible will pack 580 horsepower and 556 pound-feet of torque from its supercharged 6.2-liter LSA V8, besting the Ford Shelby GT500 Convertible's power figures of 550 hp and 510 lb-ft.

Good thing Ford is working on that all-new supercharged 5.8-liter V8 for the next-generation GT500. The horsepower wars are anything but dead.

GM tells us that it has added a whole host of supports and reinforcements to the ZL1 Convertible's body structure in an effort to reduce droptop demons like cowl shake. The improvements include things like a front X brace and rear V brace, a transmission support reinforcement brace, underbody tunnel brace and tower-to-tower brace under the hood.

The Camaro ZL1 coupe goes on sale in early 2012, and we'd expect the convertible to arrive shortly thereafter. We'll have the full details in Los Angeles next month, but for now, hit the jump for GM's official release.


*Apparently cars like the Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport don't count in GM's world.
Show full PR text
Camaro ZL1: Most Powerful Chevrolet Convertible Ever

DETROIT – Chevrolet announced today the brand's most-powerful convertible ever – the 2013 Camaro ZL1 – will debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show next month. When it goes on sale in late 2012, it will deliver more performance and technology than many exotic cars and ultra-luxury convertibles.

"The Camaro ZL1 convertible will be one of the most powerful and most capable, convertibles available at any price," said Al Oppenheiser, Camaro chief engineer. "This is a car that is guaranteed to put a smile on your face every time you drop the top – or hit the gas."

Like the coupe, the Camaro ZL1 convertible features a supercharged 6.2L "LSA" engine, SAE-rated at 580 horsepower (432 kW) and 556 lb.-ft. of torque (754 Nm). That's enough to exceed the output of 2+2 convertibles of many performance icons, including:

2012 Aston Martin DB9 Volante – 470 hp / 443 lb.-ft.
2012 Mercedes SL63 AMG – 518 hp / 465 lb.-ft.
2011 Porsche 911 Turbo S – 530 hp / 516 lb.-ft.
2011 Ford Shelby GT500 – 550 hp / 510 lb.-ft.

The Camaro ZL1 convertible's power is complemented by advanced powertrain and chassis technologies designed to deliver exceptional performance on the road or track. In fact, it's the same balance of acceleration, handling and ride quality that enabled a Camaro ZL1 coupe recently to lap the Nürburgring's Nordschleife course in 7:41.27 minutes.

From Day One, the architecture for the fifth-generation Camaro was designed to accommodate a convertible model, which gives the ZL1 convertible coupe-like driving dynamics. Four strategic reinforcements enhance the already-stiff body structure to quell the cowl and steering wheel shake common in convertibles. They include:

A tower-to-tower brace under the hood
A transmission support reinforcement brace
Underbody tunnel brace
Front "X" brace and stiffer cradle as well as rear underbody "V" braces.
Additional structural reinforcements in the ZL1 convertible are designed to improve noise and vibration characteristics, while also reducing unwanted ride and body motions. They include a hydrofoamed tube in the A-pillars, an inner reinforcement bracket in the windshield header, a reinforced front hinge pillar and reinforcements inside the rockers.

The suspension of the ZL1 convertible uses the third-generation of Magnetic Ride. New, twin-wire/dual-coil dampers at all four corners enable faster response, with damping levels now adjusted up to 1,000 times per second – about one adjustment per inch of vehicle travel at 60 mph – making the system exceptionally responsive to changing driving and road conditions.

The Camaro ZL1 convertible will also offer Performance Traction Management as standard equipment, which is exclusive to General Motors. First introduced on the Corvette ZR1, it is an advanced system that integrates magnetic ride control, launch control, traction control and electronic stability control, to enhance both launch-acceleration performance and corning.

The result is a convertible designed to preserve nearly all the acceleration, road-holding and performance capabilities of the Camaro ZL1 coupe, which goes on sale in early 2012.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 109 Comments
      ddstan1120
      • 3 Years Ago
      I don't know how the big three ever stopped making REAL cars like the monsters that started in the 50's and stopped when the energy crisis hit in the early 70's. I remember a Camaro with a (UGH) 4 cylinder motor. The Chevy 427, the 426 Hemi, the 429 Ford. Those were the good old days, and I missed them when they went away. As the movie line said, "They're Back", and we old gearheads are glad to see it!
      pmann12132
      • 3 Years Ago
      The Bugatti Veyron a production car? What a snob. Let me guess, you drive a Civic?
      axiomatik
      • 3 Years Ago
      Congratulations Steven Ewing! You have won an award for the Worst Post of the Week! Not only are you incapable of comprehending the first sentence of the press release, you also don't know the difference between a targa top and a convertible!
        Jim Davis
        • 3 Years Ago
        @axiomatik
        Not to mention that the Bugatti doesn't even have a top. Check his own link. It clearly states the soft top is an umbrella. On top of that the Bugatti is not a true production vehicle. A model must hit at least 300 units down an assembly line to become production. Since Bugatti's are all hand built and assembled using no power tools, it would never qualify. Nice catch axiomatik...
          tgsid
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Jim Davis
          The Bugatti Veyron GS has a "umbrella" suitable for 80 miles per hour, and a removable hard top. It's not a "drop top" as i don't believe they get stuffed in between the engine bay and the back of the seats while still staying connected together. although if you were removing the tops I suppose you could drop them on the ground and then that would be a drop top.
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      SloopJohnB
      • 3 Years Ago
      Fageddaboudit insurance....probably aout $4-5K per year unless you're over 50!
      mmiragemotorcars
      • 3 Years Ago
      Nice...but the fact is that this generation of Muscle car will NEVER be as valuable or as special as the originals. As the owner of one of the original zl-1's I can tell ya it just doesn't get much better than the feel and sound of the aluminum block 427.
        cmcclarty
        • 3 Years Ago
        @mmiragemotorcars
        I dont know let someone get 1 of theses in 30 years it will bring in money.
      Wesley Stocker
      • 3 Years Ago
      The Bugatti is not a 2+2 and it is a removable roof not a convertible - the writing here is getting worse these days.
      Mazdaspeed6
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'm sure GM meant most powerful Chevy convertible Steven. Double check that. Off the top of my head the Mercedes SL65 AMG produces 600hp and 740lbft.
        FSLIV
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Mazdaspeed6
        The SL63 AMG produces 518hp the SL65 AMG is no longer in production. The Bugatti is not a drop top its a targa top.
          tgsid
          • 3 Years Ago
          @FSLIV
          Who cares if it isn't in production? in 2002 the McLaren F1 was the fastest car in the world and it wasn't in production. a 1976 Cadillac Fleetwood 75 is the longest production car and it isn't in production.
      tubad1980
      • 3 Years Ago
      I've always been a fan of the Camaros and Firebirds, but didn't they go away in 2002 because the price tag had gotten so out of hand that they weren't worth producing anymore due to slow sales? I love the new Camaros and Challengers (Mustangs as well to a slightly lesser extent), but I'm not a trust fund heir, nor am I a retired executive. I'm a regular 30 year old guy with a college education, a good job and a mortgage, and unfortunately these are still my "if I win the lottery" cars. If I didn't live in a location in which we actually have a winter, it would be a little more realistic, but I learned from experience in my old Firebird Formula, these things are worthless in 10 inches of snow. I guess I'm just saying that most of the people I've seen driving these amazing monsters appear to have zero appreciation for them and can afford to just throw them away if they wrap them around a pole driving like an idiot, or look as though this is their last car before they die and constantly drive them 10 mph below the speed limit with the left turn signal on. I thought "muscle cars" were originally designed for the young crowd. I'm not getting any younger and don't want to wait until I'm afraid to drive one before I can afford it.
      ijardine
      • 3 Years Ago
      Nice car indeed, but I am not sure I could afford the cost of replacing the rubber every six months;)
        Krishan Mistry
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ijardine
        Replace front tyres every 6 weeks. Replace rear tyres every 6 days :)
        Elmo
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ijardine
        If you have the $40,000-$50,000 to pay for this car, then you have the money to pay for the tires.
          NissanGTR
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Elmo
          580 bhp isnt a lot of power. Especially when the whole car weighs over 2 tons.
          Elmo
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Elmo
          NissanGTR, you have no room to talk when your precious GT-R is 3900lbs and only has 520hp. Please go away. By the way, the GT500 has trouble putting down all of its 550hp. Imagine a similarly weighted Camaro with 580hp.
          Hazdaz
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Elmo
          I don't think you understand how American consumers think. The ONLY thing that many of them worry about is the up-front initial costs... damn the long-term costs, maintenance, insurance, resale and fuel costs. Total cost of ownership seems to be a foreign word these days.
          tgsid
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Elmo
          $50,000 isn't that much money anymore. in the 1930's people dreamed of being millionaires. they still do 80 years later, even though 1,000,000 in the 1930s is 6 billion today.
          Elmo
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Elmo
          Haz, you REALLY took that out of context. No one was talking about cost of ownership. We were talking about the tires because they would be gone within 6 months because of the immense amount of power coming from this car.
          tgsid
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Elmo
          The Shelby GT500 Super Snake gets 750 BHP! and you can get it as a convertible.
      NissanGTR
      • 3 Years Ago
      580 bhp isnt a lot of power. Especially when the whole car weighs over 2 tons.
        Lemon
        • 3 Years Ago
        @NissanGTR
        "580 bhp isn't a lot of power" Please leave.
          tgsid
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Lemon
          In this day and age, 580 isn't that much, seeing as you can now go to a dealership and buy a corvette with over 630 horsepower, or a ford mustang with over 750 horsepower.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @NissanGTR
        [blocked]
      delmail333
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'll just keep my 1969 Camaro since I know the dealers will jack thae prices on this ZL-1 right through the Roof ( no pun intended )
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