SEMA 2008 show report: Chevrolet Camaro

Published: 04 November 2008

Much like Mercedes has done with its GLK at this year’s SEMA show, Chevrolet has turned its Camaro muscle car over to four tuners to see what they come up with. And credit crunch and fuel prices be damned - we like what we’re seeing. A lot. Here’s a look at each concept Camaro in detail…

The LS7 and the Black

The LS7 concept draws inspiration from the legendary COPO Camaros of the 1960s that were bought to go drag racing on the weekend. Fitted with drag strip-ready rear rubber, the LS7 is, as its name suggests, fitted with GM’s LS7 ‘crate engine’ – a chunky V8 good for 550bhp – that’s hooked up to a Tremec 6060 six-speed manual box. Custom 20inch alloys, a slammed ride height and bespoke exhaust system complete the package.

The Black concept looks more stealth fighter than road racer. Although the stock engine remains unchanged (300bhp 3.6-litre V6) the Camaro has been given a menacing makeover with a matte black bonnet, grunty body kit, black 21inch alloys, blacked-out grille and rear lights and red-ringed headlamps. Pitch-black windows and a cabin darker than a cola mine at night finish off the transformation from muscle car to satanic racer.

The Dale Earnhardt and GS Racer

The GS Racer harks back to distinctive blue-and-yellow Camaro of Mark Donohue who drove his car to championship victory in the 1969 Trans Am road racing series. Created by North Carolina-based Riley Technologies, the GS will put its money where its mouth is and enter the 2009 Grand Am Koni Challenge series. And with its 422bhp V8, race-ready suspension, seam-welded chassis, transmission and differential coolers, bespoke exhaust and carbonfibre bonnet, boot lid and doors it should be able to holds it own.

Created by Dale Earnhardt Jr, his eponymous V8 Camaro concept runs on E85 for greener credentials – and even more power. It breathes through new exhaust headers and runs through to the rear wheels through a short-throw six-speed manual box. It’s grey, orange and white paintjob is underscored by bespoke 21inch alloys and Pirelli P-Zero tyres.

 

By Ben Whitworth

Contributing editor, sartorial over-achiever, HANS device shirt collars

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