We already knew that the new 2017 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 is the fastest Camaro to ever roll out of a GM factory, but with a top speed of 198 mph, the ZL1 is one of the fastest cars anywhere. It's even faster than the current Chevrolet Corvette Z06. The number comes from a recent test where Chevy's 650 horsepower supercharged sledgehammer hit max velocity around the 7.6 mile High-Speed Oval at Germany's Automotive Testing Papenburg GmBH.
While the ZL1's official top speed misses the magic 200 mark, it did peak at 202.3 mph in one direction. Top speed runs take the average of two runs in opposite directions, to account for variables like wind and track surface. The ZL1's other run of 193.3 mph brought the overall average down. The Papenburg high-speed oval has 2.5-mile straights with 1.3-mile turns with a 49.7 degree banking. Chevrolet says the steep banking allowed the drivers to push flat out for the entire run.
For reference in American-car bench racing, the Dodge Charger Hellcat has a claimed top speed of 204 mph. The Chevrolet Corvette Z06 tops out at 198 mph. The previous 2009 - 2013 Corvette ZR1 could hit 205 mph, according to Chevy.
Chevy also says there were no modifications to the car other than safety and data-logging equipment. The factory Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar 3 tires were inflated to 44 psi, the recommended setting for high-speed driving. The camber on both the front and rear was set to 0 degrees to allow for the maximum tire pressure.
We've already waxed poetic about how the ZL1 is the best way to take GM's supercharged LT4 engine, if performance figures like a 3.5-second 0 to 60 time and 1.02 g of lateral grip weren't enough to convince you. But consider one more astounding feat of this pony car. 30 years ago, the Ferrari F40 was the fastest car in the world at 199 mph. Today, provided you can find a closed course with enough room, you can exchange $63,435 at a Chevy dealer and get within fractions of the same speed.