During the Muscle Car Wars of the 1960s and 1970s, American car brands had a muscle cars and pony cars. Pony cars were affordable, compact, highly stylish, and high performing cars. In 1964 Ford launched the Mustang, the car that started the pony car. In 1966, Chevrolet revealed the Camaro. In 2002, Chevrolet ceased production of the Camaro. In 2009, Chevrolet revived the Camaro name and released the fifth-generation of the Camaro which was based on the 1969 Camaro. The new Camaro gives Chevrolet and GM a muscle car that can compete with the Ford Mustang and the Dodge Challenger. In 2011, the Camaro was available with a retractable softtop. Like the Camaros of the past, the current generation comes with  3.6L V6 and 6.2L V8 engines with different power outputs.

I see several fifth-generation Camaros at Houston Cars and Coffee events and on the roads. This is a very popular car. I love the styling of the new Camaro. The angle of the windshield could hinder the visibility of Camaro drivers and has been a major criticism of the Camaro. I sat in one at the 2011 Houston Auto Show and had no problem looking through the windshield. It is comfortable to sit in the front, but there is not much leg room for passengers sitting in the back.

The fifth-generation Chevrolet Camaro is powered by 2 different 3.6L V6 engines and 6.2L V8 engines. The Camaro uses either a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission. The V6 engines produce either 312 hp or 323 hp. The V8 engines produce between 400 hp and 550 hp. 0-60 times for the Camaro range from 4.6 seconds to 6.1 seconds. The top speed for the Camaro ranges from 150 mph to over 180 mph. Prices for the Camaro start between $22,000 and $40,000, depending on the trim level. The price is very low for a high performing muscle car.

The fifth-generation Chevrolet Camaro can be seen in all three Transformers films. It is the vehicle form of the Autobot Bumblebee. It has been reviewed on Motorweek and has been featured on Jay Leno’s Garage. Richard Hammond reviewed the Camaro SS during Series 15, Episode 3, where Hammond compared the Camaro to a Mercedes-Benz E 63 AMG. The fifth-generation Camaro is playable in almost every major racing game. It is playable in the Burnout games, Need For Speed Games, Test Drive Unlimited 2, Gran Turismo 5, Blur, Split/Second, Dirt 3, Transformers movie games, Project Gotham Racing 4, ModNation Racers, Forza Motorsport 3, and many other video games.

Final Thought: The fifth-generation Camaro is a very stylish muscle car with good performance. It continues the Camaro tradition of offering several options so there is a Camaro for all types of drivers. I did not like that the first Transformers movie was just a 2-hour commercial for the new Camaro. I already know that the Camaro is a good car. I don’t need to waste money on a film that is just a long car commercial.

Hennessey Camaro Convertible

Hennessey is also offering different tuning packages for the new Camaro. Prices start at $4,950 for 475 hp package and go to $69,950 of the 1000 hp package. John Hennessey stop by Jay Leno’s Garage to show off one of his tuned version of the Camaro, called the Hennessey Camaro HPE600. I saw the Hennessey Camaro at the April 2011 edition of Houston Cars and Coffee. The Hennessey Camaro is for those who want a little bit more performance out of their stock Camaros.

CarJunkie

Photos taken from a camera phone

Originally written on June 28, 2011

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