2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 Is The Real Track-Focused Deal: First Ride Page 2

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2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 First Ride

2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 First Ride

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The Camaro Z/28 can easily and comfortably exceed 1g in corners. It can accelerate hard thanks to both its engine and its extensive weight savings over the standard Camaro SS. It can also run harder into corners and then brake later before applying clipping the apex and getting back on the power. This all helps add up to the potential for some seriously fast lap times. It also makes one hell of a noise.

But what does all of this actually mean? It means that the 2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 isn't aiming to take on the likes of the Ford Mustang, it's forever nemesis. The Z/28 wipes the floor with every current Mustang you can buy. Yes… even the Boss 302 Laguna Seca. Chevrolet ran a handful of Mustang and Camaro variants at its own Milford Proving Grounds Road Course, which mimics a number of turns from well known racetracks like the Nuburgring, and Spring Mountain Motorsports Ranch. Their drivers were told not to hold back, and we'll hold them to their word on this one. Here are the results:

2013 Ford Mustang GT500: 1:59.97
2012 Ford Mustang Boss 302 Laguna Seca: 1:59.05
2014 Camaro 1LE: 1:58:85
2012 Camaro ZL1: 1:56.58

2014 Camaro Z/28: 1:53.71

Now, we'll reiterate that this was a home game for Chevy. The Milford Proving Grounds are where performance Bow Ties are born, breed, and educated. The deck is stacked in favor of the Z/28. To appease that argument, Chevrolet also boxed up the Camaro and shipped it to Germany. More specifically, the automaker and some of its finest drivers jumped in the good seat to set times at the Nurburgring. The fastest lap the Z/28 was able to run was a very impressive 7:37.40, which was enough to beat the times of the Porsche 911 and the Lamborghini Murcielago. Oh… and it was raining when Adam Dean laid down his fast video run.

The folks at GM tell us the unofficial fastest time set in the dry is in the 7:31 range. They can't come out and claim that, of course, because a 'Ring-Based gentleman's agreement says that it has to show up on video. So, the Chevy team plans to go back and get the time they feel the car deserves and is capable of hitting… with video proof.

2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 First Ride

2014 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 First Ride

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Of course, a package like this won't come cheap. The ZL1 is now the second most expensive street-legal production Camaro. The Z/28 will slot above it in the price department. That's fine, since it slots above it in the overall performance department as well. Still, you're losing a few amenities you might be used to. Air conditioning is the only available optional extra. If you check that box, you also add in all of the extra speakers that Chevy took out, minus the one they left per the federal mandate for the chime that lets you know the door is open.

Chevrolet themselves have stated that this is a car they want purchased by people who are going to drive it hard on the racetrack. The automaker knows a few will be socked away by folks looking to get rich at Barrett-Jackson 2050, but that's not why this car has been created. The volume is low, with expected production to be in the 3,000 to 4,000 range over the course of two years. Chevy wants the majority of those buyers to be men and women looking to put a hardcore track machine in their garage, which can also be driven to and from the course.

For years now, the Camaro has been sort of falling by the wayside as the Ford Mustang progresses down the path from Pony Car to bonafide world-class sports car. Now though, it seems the Camaro has not only caught up… but blazed a path for both machines to follow. As they compete with each other, they will find new foes to battle from Germany and Japan… 

The American Sports Car, led by the Camaro Z/28, has just declared a round of thermonuclear global war... 

…would you like to play a game?


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