Nearly two weeks ago, we reported news of a "quality assessment" issue with the 2012 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 that was holding up deliveries and further production. We checked in with Chevrolet spokesman Monte Doran today to get some clarification on where things stand with the 580-horsepower coupe after being alerted by a reader that Camaro5 forum members with the car on order are growing increasingly frustrated with the delay, seemingly unable to get a clear status update on the fate of their vehicles.
General Motors is declining to say what the nature of the problem is, but Doran says the automaker is confident they are close to a fix that will enable deliveries "in the weeks, not months."
Doran estimates that GM has built "a couple of hundred" 2012 ZL1 models, but only one was delivered to a customer, and that example was handed over due to a dealer error and subsequently reclaimed pending the update. Any ZL1s that were delivered to dealers are back at Chevrolet's Oshawa, Ontario plant awaiting the fix.
Given that the ZL1 was to launch in spring, the high-performance coupe was already looking at an unusually short model year. This stoppage could mean that the 2012 model year run will be even shorter. Doran says GM hopes and expects that when production does resume that it will do so with 2012 models, but he admits that depending on timing, it's possible that Oshawa could transition directly to 2013 model year builds. Either way, contrary to rumors, ZL1 models already built will be delivered as 2012 models. Doran also indicates that GM has instructed its dealers to not accept further orders for 2012 models at this time.
GM acknowledges that this is an unfortunate situation – particularly because the ZL1 is a hotly anticipated model where some eager customers have had their deposits in for six months or more – but Doran says Chevy wants to focus on "getting the car right" so that customers are satisfied in the end.
While the delay is no doubt frustrating for those who have been waiting months for their cars, we couldn't help but wonder aloud to Doran if the very abbreviated 2012 model year production may result in their increased collectability down the road. He paused and replied, "You're not the first person to suggest that."