2012 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

How does fifty-five grand for 580 horsepower sound? Probably not as good as the 2012 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 at full scream.

General Motors has come clean with pricing and performance details for the most powerful Camaro ever, and as expected, it's something of a bargain. An official MSRP of $54,995 includes a $900 delivery charge, and that pile of cash buys a 6.2-liter, supercharged and intercooled LSA V8 that's good for 556 lb-ft of torque. The ZL1 will also pack standard Performance Traction Management, a suite of electronic suspension and steering enhancements including magnetic ride control, launch control, traction control, stability control and electric power steering. Chevrolet is also touting the Camaro's track-readiness, thanks to standard rear differential cooler, engine and transmission oil coolers, and brake-cooling ducts.

Chevy's official performance specs for the Camaro ZL1 favor the automatic, which can do 0-60 in 3.9 seconds and cover the quarter-mile in 12.0 seconds at 119 miles per hour. The manual is a tenth of a second slower in both exercises. Know too, that Chevy's stopwatches time from a rolling start. Top speed for the manual is 180 mph and the automatic is four miles per hour faster. Both cars can pull 1.0 g on the skidpad, according to the automaker.

There are only six options on the ZL1, starting with the choice of transmission. An extra $1,185 will get you a six-speed automatic with manual shift mode. Adding bright aluminum wheels will set you back $470, as will stripes. A sunroof is priced at $900, while the carbon fiber hood insert is $600. Finally, a suede package for the steering wheel and shifter is $500. Leather interior is standard, along with heated power seats, and a nine-speaker audio system with USB port and Bluetooth.

Dealers should get their ZL1 coupes in the spring of 2012, getting a head start on the forthcoming 2013 Ford Shelby GT500. Read the full press release after the jump.
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Camaro ZL1 by the Numbers: 3.9 Seconds, 184 mph, $54,995

DETROIT – The 2012 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Coupe accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds and can reach a top speed of 184 mph. Starting at $54,995, including Performance Traction Management and Magnetic Ride suspension, the ZL1 delivers supercar levels of performance and technology for the price of a sports car.

"From the original Camaro to the current Corvette ZR1, Chevrolet has a long history of delivering world-class cars that outperformed competitors at several times the price," said Chris Perry, vice president, Global Chevrolet Marketing. "The ZL1 is no exception. There are very few cars at any price that can match the power, features, and track-capability of the Camaro ZL1."

For the $54,995 price, including a $900 delivery fee, the ZL1 compares favorably to much more expensive cars:

Base price Horsepower Torque Magnetic Ride
Camaro ZL1 $54,995 580 556 Standard
Audi R8 GT $196,800 560 398 Standard
Maserati
GranTurismo $122,800 405 339 Not available
Mercedes
SLS AMG $185,750 565 479 Not available

Supercar Performance

The heart of the Camaro ZL1 is a supercharged 6.2L engine is SAE-rated at 580 horsepower (432 kW) and 556 lb.-ft. of torque (754 Nm) – making it the most-powerful production Camaro ever.

The LSA features a Roots-style blower with an efficient four-lobe rotor set and compact intercooler The ZL1 also features a standard dual-mode exhaust system, with vacuum-actuated valves in the exhaust pipes for a refined exhaust note at low speeds as well as a free-flowing system for peak performance.

Power is delivered to the rear wheels through either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. With either transmission, the Camaro ZL1 delivers impressive performance:

Manual Automatic
0 – 60 mph (from rolling start) 4.0 seconds 3.9 seconds
1/4-mile (from a rolling start) 12.1 sec at 119 mph 12.0 sec at 119 mph
Top speed 180 mph 184 mph
Max lateral grip 1.0 g 1.0 g

"With 0 to 60 taking less than four seconds, and a top speed in excess of 180 mph, the power and acceleration of the Camaro ZL1 rivals many supercars," said Al Oppenheiser, Camaro chief engineer. "And, horsepower is only half of the story, as the most significant measurement of the ZL1's potential is lapping the Nurburgring in 7:41.27. That is a great testament to the power, braking, grip, and balance of the Camaro ZL1, and to the well-rounded performance of the ZL1 that sets the bar for the sports-car segment."

Exclusive, track-capable technologies

To deliver that well-rounded performance, the Camaro ZL1 comes standard with several track-capable technologies that are exclusive to the segment.

For example, the Camaro ZL1 is the first sports car to feature the third-generation of Magnetic Ride. This advanced suspension system employs valve-less damping and Magneto-Rheological (MR) fluid technology to varies the suspension firmness to match the road and driving conditions.

"Traditional suspension systems at some point compromise ride quality for road-holding grip and body control," said Oppenheiser. "With Magnetic Ride Control, we can offer customers the best of both worlds: A comfortable ride that makes the ZL1 appropriate as a daily driver and the incredibly precise body control that makes the ZL1 so enjoyable on the track."

Also standard on the Camaro ZL1 is Performance Traction Management, which integrates magnetic ride control, launch control, traction control, electronic stability control and electric power steering response to enhance performance. The technology was first introduced on the Corvette ZR1. With Performance Traction Management, the launch control feature (manual transmission only) automatically modulates engine torque for the best-possible acceleration without excessive wheel spin. When the driver pushes the throttle to the floor, the system holds a predetermined engine speed until the driver releases the clutch. Then, the system modulates engine torque 1,000 times per second to maximize the available traction. Similarly, on a road course, the driver can apply full throttle when exiting a corner and Performance Traction Management will automatically manage acceleration dynamics to maximize exit speed based on available traction.

In addition, the Camaro ZL1 has been engineered to be track-capable from the factory, including a rear-differential cooler, an integrated engine- and transmission-oil cooler, and brake-cooling ducts as standard equipment. As such, the ZL1 offers many technologies and features not available on the 2012 Ford Shelby GT500:

Camaro ZL1 2012 GT500
Magnetic Ride Standard Not available
Performance Traction Management Standard Not available
Factory engine and transmission coolers Standard Dealer-installed option
Factory brake cooling ducts Standard Dealer-installed option
Factory rear differential cooler Standard Dealer-installed option


Additional features and options

The interior of the Camaro ZL1 features standard leather seating surfaces with suede microfiber inserts and heated, powered-adjustable front seats. Standard technologies include a nine-speaker Boston Acoustics® audio system; USB and Bluetooth connectivity; and rear-park assist with a rear-view camera display integrated in the center rear-view mirror.

The Camaro ZL1 is available with six options:
• Six-speed automatic transmission with TapShift controls is $1,185
• 20-inch, bright aluminum wheel package is $470
• Power sunroof is $900
• Stripe package is $470
• Exposed-weave carbon fiber hood insert is $600
• The suede package, including suede microfiber accents on the steering wheel, shift knob, and shift boot is $500

The Camaro ZL1 Coupe will go on sale in the spring of 2012, as a 2012 model. The Camaro ZL1 Convertible will go on sale in the summer of 2012, as a 2013 model. Pricing for the Camaro ZL1 Convertible will be announced later.


About Chevrolet
Founded in Detroit in 1911, Chevrolet celebrates its centennial as a global automotive brand with annual sales of about 4.25 million vehicles in more than 140 countries. Chevrolet provides consumers with fuel-efficient, safe and reliable vehicles that deliver high quality, expressive design, spirited performance and value. The Chevrolet portfolio includes iconic performance cars such as Corvette and Camaro; dependable, long-lasting pickups and SUVs such as Silverado and Suburban; and award-winning passenger cars and crossovers such as Sonic, Cruze, Malibu, Equinox and Traverse. Chevrolet also offers "gas-friendly" solutions including Cruze Eco and Volt. Cruze Eco offers 42 mpg highway while Volt offers 35 miles of electric, gasoline-free driving and an additional 344 miles of extended gasoline range, according to EPA estimates. Most new Chevrolet models offer OnStar safety, security and convenience technologies including OnStar Hands-Free Calling, Automatic Crash Response and Stolen Vehicle Slowdown. More information regarding Chevrolet models, fuel solutions and OnStar availability can be found at www.chevrolet.com.