Chevrolet Camaro 2017 includes legendary ZL1 rated at 650 hp

2017, Chevrolet, Camaro ZL1

Holy smoking tires: Chevrolet's racy 2017 Camaro sports coupe -- tagged as the legendary ZL1 model and rigged with the Z06 Corvette LT4 V8. Pumping massive supercharged torque to the rear pair of 305/30ZR20 Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar high-performance tires -- blasts down a long strip of asphalt in a blur of flashy paint labeled Red Hot.

This ZL1 predator is the new neck-snapping top-tier Generation-6 Camaro. The 2017 editions of Camaro include LS, LT, SS and ZL1 flavors using four different powertrains comprising 4/6/8-cylinders.

What's with the ZL1 marque?

It traces back to 1969 when Chevy dealers used the ZL1 special-order engine designation -- a 427 Big Block V8 -- to create Camaros destined for Can-Am racing.

The track-capable Camaro ZL1 of 2017 totes the supercharged LT4 6.2-liter V8 which develops 650 hp plus 640 lb-ft of torque as translated through a standard Tremec 6-speed manual transmission with ACM (active rev match) or an optional Hydra-Matic 10-speed electronic automatic.

Track tests conducted by Chevrolet reveal a 0-60 time of 3.5 seconds, a quarter-mile in 11.4 seconds at 127 mph, and a max velocity (using the 10-speed auto shifter and lapping the steep-banked High-Speed Oval at Germany's Papenburg proving ground) of 202.3 mph.

Additional standard equipment for Camaro ZL1 includes 20-inch forged aluminum wheels, magnetic ride control suspension. Electronic limited-slip differential, Brembo brakes with 6-piston monobloc front calipers and massive 15.35-inch 2-piece front rotors, standard Recaro front bucket seats and a suede-bound flat-bottom steering wheel, and Apple CarPlay plus Android Auto compatibility via the MyLink audio kit and 8-inch color touchscreen.

On-board standard safety systems include Rear Park Assist, Rear Cross-Traffic Alert and Side Blind Zone Alert with Lane Change Alert, a rear-vision camera and the StabiliTrak electronic stability control system.

Camaro SS 1LE edition carries Corvette's LT1 naturally aspirated 6.2-liter V8 rated at 455 hp with 455 lb-ft of torque. The shifter is exclusively a Tremec 6-speed manual.

The SS 1LE rolls on 20-inch Goodyear Eagle F1 tires and comes with magnetic ride control plus new FE4 suspension tuning, a new electronic limited slip differential, standard Recaro seats and a PDR (performance data recorder).

Base editions of Camaro employ Camaro's first-ever turbocharged 4-cylinder engine but also offer an upgrade to a naturally aspirated V6.

The DOHC (dual overhead cam) 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 produces 275 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque and earns Camaro's best EPA-estimated fuel economy numbers -- 20/30 mpg city/highway with a Tremec 6-speed manual and 22/31 mpg city/highway with optional Hydra-Matic 8-speed automatic.

The DOHC 3.6-liter V6 hits 335 hp with a torque of 284 lb-ft as channeled through the standard Hydra-Matic 8-speed automatic. This powertrain's EPA-estimated fuel scores tally to 19/28 mpg city/highway.

Chevrolet offers two distinct 1LE track performance packages for 2017 Camaro V6 and V8 models, with each defined visually by a black satin hood and specific wheels.

The Camaro LT 1LE gets the 3.6-liter V-6 and 6-speed Tremec manual shifter, 20-inch forged aluminum wheels with Goodyear Eagle F1 245/40R20 front tires and 275/35R20 rear tires. FE3 suspension components, mechanical limited-slip differential, a track-cooling package for engine oil plus differential and transmission, dual-mode exhaust system, suede-clad steering wheel and short-throw shifter stick, the black satin hood, front splitter and 3-piece rear spoiler.

The 2017 Camaro commemorative 50th-anniversary package for 2LT models brings Nightfall Gray Metallic body paint, machined-face 20-inch aluminum wheels. Satin chrome accents, front grille with a body-color front splitter, orange-painted front brake calipers, black leather-trimmed seat upholstery with suede inserts and orange accent stitching, and 50th Anniversary logo on the instrument panel, headrests, and illuminated sill plates.

And the RS appearance package for Camaro LT models nets 20-inch aluminum wheels capped by 245/40R20 all-season run-flat tires, HID headlamps, LED taillamps, RS-specific upper and lower grilles and a rear spoiler.

Chevrolet's MSRP figures for 2017 Camaro models runs from $25,905 to $61,140.

By Bob Plunkett

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