This is one of six features celebrating the Camaro’s 50th anniversary. Check in each week for additional coverage. Learn about a new generation, aftermarket potential, legendary racers, age-old rivalry and much more. We’ve included some throwback videos for your viewing enjoyment!
Same Legend, New Chapter (2010-2015)
Some things never go out of style, like Chevy deciding to shine up the Camaro and take ‘er for another spin upon the success of the Ford Mustang revamp in 2005. After eight years of the flag remaining at half-mast, Chevy swept the modern muscle category off its feet with highly anticipated fifth-generation production; and it didn’t take long to prove it was the same legend symbolizing a new chapter for the Camaro. Among its industry awards and recognition, J.D. Power bestowed the “Most Dependable Sporty Car” four years in a row based on the 2013 model. Most notably, the Camaro was named the “World Car Design of the Year” at the World Car of the Year Awards in 2010.
“The retro styling borrows shamelessly from the 1969 Camaro, down to the cowl-induction-style hood, Coke bottle profile, cross-hatch grille and rear-quarter gills,” said Edmunds. “Yet it’s not a complete knock-off, as the 2010 has a huskier stance and is noticeably thicker in the rear haunches. The cockpit is mostly modern, with a few old-school touches thrown in such as a quartet of gauges located down low in front of the gear shifter. The latter isn’t exactly an ergonomic success, but they pay homage to the optional setup of the late ‘60s,” continued Edmunds.
The RS package offered 20” wheels, a rear spoiler, HID headlights and smoked taillights. But it was the refined powerplant under the SS hood that had people talking—a 6.2L V8 putting out upwards of 426 horsepower. As if Camaro was making up for lost time in previous generations, soon the famed ZL1 returned to the Camaro lineup; it featured a supercharged 6.2L V8 capable of 580 horsepower. “You’re making 500-700 horsepower and your wife can take it for groceries,” laughed Dave Burke, Speed and Performance Category Manager at Keystone.
“The Camaro is a much different animal compared to the other cars in its category. Chevrolet does a great job emphasizing the fact that these are track-proven cars, whether it’s in a straight line or handling a road course,” said Rory Connell, Vice President of Sales at Gibson Performance. “This results in a much different enthusiast base who is using the car for more competition, rather than just street performance like other platforms. Take a trip to any local autocross event and you will see more fifth-generation Camaros than fifth-generation Mustangs hands down,” he continued.
In the fall of 2013, an all-new Z/28 showed its nimble zest at the track, establishing a lap record at the Nürburgring with a time of 7:37.47. This placed it ahead of published times for the Porsche 911 Carrera S. It ushered a new era of track dominance, but maintained its road king
Camaro Boosts Aftermarket Business
“The fifth generation Chevy Camaro created a large boost in our industry and because of that, we are celebrating our 10th anniversary here at Tune Time Performance (in Lakewood, NJ). The Camaro has always been a cornerstone of our business. We have built and tuned more Camaros than most shops will see in their lifetime. And we look forward to continuing that tradition with the sixth-generation models,” said Hauffe, owner of the shop.
As for the aftermarket potential, well, “it’s an exciting time to be in the performance industry, for sure! Automakers have really listened to the enthusiast’s wants and desires and have stepped up their game to provide them with some fantastic choices in the performance segment,” said Hauffe. “We cater to those who continuously want more out of the vehicle. Better acceleration, more precise handling, improved braking abilities and an overall better driving experience tailored to their specific needs,” he continued.
Hauffe believes the Camaro has always been a wonderful platform to build upon; it certainly has aftermarket support from a wide variety of companies including GM Performance, Holley, Moroso, Edelbrock, MSD, Procharger, Comp Cams, Hurst, BMR suspension, Nitrous Outlet, Magnaflow, MBRP and countless others. “Whether you enjoy a day at the drag strip, the road course or simply a spirited drive down a back country road, the Camaro delivers a thrill every time. And we have the background and technical skills to build your dream car to take you there,” said Hauffe.
Check back with us next week as we dive into the sixth generation Chevy Camaro and talk shop with Jared Chavez of Magnaflow!