One of the biggest challenges automakers face when designing a high-performance car is making sure that it is both fast and reliable. For General Motors, any car that might be taken to the track by its owner – like the Corvette, Camaro Z/28 (shown above) and the Cadillac CTS-V, for example – undergoes a rigorous and strenuous 24-hour test by engineers at the Milford Proving Grounds, as pointed out by Car and Driver.

We've posted on this topic in the past – on a video showing the Camaro ZL1 being brutalized, for instance – but this article gives a more in-depth look at what actually happens behind the scenes... including what that poor ZL1 went through. Though the test isn't for 24 hours straight, the cars are pushed as hard as possible by some of GM's best drivers with only the brakes and tires replaced frequently.

We don't want to ruin the fun for you, but it is an interesting article that tells just some of what GM does to develop its sports cars. Check out the full article over at Car and Driver for the rest of the story.


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  • 40 Comments
      11fiveoh
      • 1 Year Ago
      Where do I apply for this job?
      Nick B
      • 1 Year Ago
      I expected that article to be a little more "in depth" than that.
        Nick B
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Nick B
        Though it is nice to know if I bought one of those cars it *shouldnt* break if I take it to the track.
          Jerry
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Nick B
          LOL have you seen the way the Camaro snaps propshafts and rear axles?
          Nick B
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Nick B
          *axles*
      Adamnski
      • 1 Year Ago
      Ferrari's seem to burst in to flames going to the salon all the time. I would guess they don't do this kind of testing. Just sayin...
      theblackporsche
      • 1 Year Ago
      Since when does GM sell "sports cars?" The only one they make is the Corvette. They sell sports car. The Camaro is a sports car in the way that I'm a Victoria Secret lingerie model.
        tiger
        • 1 Year Ago
        @theblackporsche
        Your kidding right? Performance car = sports car.
          FutureDoc
          • 1 Year Ago
          @tiger
          Sportscar: Typically small, light, focused on the chassis first, small displacement for less expensive models, 2-seats or a unusable back seat for legless children... Yeah, the Camaro fits none of those identifiers. It is a pony/muscle car... maybe better defined as a large/heavy performance coupe or tourer (like a discount Audi S5). Curves before Quarters. Performance does not equal "sports" as any 50-70s British roadster will attest to that.
          Nick B
          • 1 Year Ago
          @tiger
          No youre right black, no one should EVER bring a Camaro ZL1 to a track day. Oh, wait, whats that? It beat a 911 GT3 around the 'Ring and came within .4 of the 911 turbo?
          theblackporsche
          • 1 Year Ago
          @tiger
          @tiger lol. It's my mistake for completely misreading...I don't believe they said sports car anywhere...they said high-performance. I just can't imagine someone bringing a Camaro to a track day.
          tiger
          • 1 Year Ago
          @tiger
          FutureDoc. You start by defining sports car with \"typically\" which means not always. I have a Camaro, it does fit the identifier of unusable back seat.
        ImpulseGTO
        • 1 Year Ago
        @theblackporsche
        The ZL1 and Z/28 are sports cars. Especially the Z/28. Theblackporche, I guess you haven't been to many track days... Plenty of Camaros at track days. The Z/28 will be a great track day car.
      Rob302
      • 1 Year Ago
      GM... Boy, it looks like the only kink they forgot to iron out was the 90's Honda Prelude rear lights... But the rest looks great...
        Renaurd
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Rob302
        You might want to take a look at the 1966 Chevy Impala, that is where these taillights originated.......
      collabplan
      • 1 Year Ago
      Unfortunately for GM, customer satisfaction stats were released today, and all of the Big Three suffered significant drops. This was especially true for Chevrolet, the maker of GM performance cars, which is second to worst among all manufacturers for customer satisfaction. I guess they need to do more than this 25 hour test to "get the kinks out".
        Tone
        • 1 Year Ago
        @collabplan
        @collab You\'re trumpeting the C/S rankings like they\'re the straw that broke GM\'s back, when, in fact, the article you yourself cited gives strong potential reasons for the drop...and not just for GM, as you stated. Nevermind the fact that GM\'s other brands have risen in the same survey. What\'s you\'re angle? Considering this is a \"how one automaker does X\" and not a \"why automaker Z is great\" article, (and your posting history) all I can smell is hate.
          collabplan
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Tone
          Tone, I have no angle, other than finding it ironic that the quarterly satisfaction rankings, along with Chevy's spot at the bottom of that list, coincides with this article about the 24 hour test.
        Jerry
        • 1 Year Ago
        @collabplan
        All the rebadged Opels and Daewoos are starting to catch up with them?
      bootsnchaps60
      • 1 Year Ago
      If only they'd take more than 24 hours to reconsider the car designs. This is PR hype to counter the problems in the "normal" cars. Or is this GM's latest delusion that they make "performance" cars? That went away long ago.
      knightrider_6
      • 1 Year Ago
      "One of the biggest challenges automakers face when designing a high-performance car is making sure that it is both fast and reliable." unless it's Audi or BMW, in which case fancy headlights and clever marketing will suffice.
      mikemaj82
      • 1 Year Ago
      I wish they would test other things on the car, like the flying roof, constant airbag light, or harmonic balancer on the Corvette..which all fail pretty much after a few thousand miles.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @mikemaj82
        [blocked]
          erjhe
          • 1 Year Ago
          I'm going to assume you're being genuine and give you a little education: The harmonic balancer is used to absorb/control/mitigate torsional vibrations in the crankshaft. It's related to the number of pistons, firing order, crankshaft material, shape, etc and doesn't have anything to do with the actual balance of the rotating assembly. Without the harmonic balancer, resonant vibrations in the crankshaft can and usually will lead to a catastrophic failure of the crank.
          foamypirate
          • 1 Year Ago
          Did you really just post that? Every internally or externally balanced Chevy V8 ever, has a harmonic balancer...
      collabplan
      • 1 Year Ago
      Interesting, but every significant manufacturer puts their cars through similarly vigorous testing. This isn't unique to GM.
        imag
        • 1 Year Ago
        @collabplan
        Well I can think of a few performance cars off the top of my head that have been shown not to hold up to even a 5-lap set, let alone 24 hours of track time: GT500 (brakes) FR-S/BRZ (brakes) M5/M6 (brakes) Veyron (brakes) Focus ST (brakes)
        Tone
        • 1 Year Ago
        @collabplan
        The air of bitterness is palpable in this post. No, it\'s not unique to GM. And I\'m sure when another automaker\'s methods become available and are deemed worthy of their own article by C&D, they\'ll have one written about them as well.
        ngiotta
        • 1 Year Ago
        @collabplan
        But not every significant manufacturer paid for this advertising space...
          • 1 Year Ago
          @ngiotta
          [blocked]
          collabplan
          • 1 Year Ago
          @ngiotta
          In customer satisfaction ratings released today, Chevy ranked second to last among all manufacturers. Fail.
      FutureDoc
      • 1 Year Ago
      How about getting the kinks out of ALL cars. Love GM but sometimes I think they consider reliability as a luxury/enthusiast feature.
      mbukukanyau
      • 1 Year Ago
      Chevrolet is the best sports car maker in the world right now.
        collabplan
        • 1 Year Ago
        @mbukukanyau
        You need to stop drinking in the morning. I can only hope that your comment was made in a sad attempt at humor. Seriously.
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