New Camaro Debuts, Now 90 Kilos Lighter

BY Azfar Hashim

A 4-cylinder turbocharged power plant also introduced for a more global appeal

Chevrolet has given the sixth-generation Camaro a leaner design and a broader engine lineup as it tries to challenge the revitalised Ford Mustang. On Saturday, Chevrolet introduced the car at a trackside event that drew more than 1,000 Camaro fans on Belle Isle Park. The Camaro will go on sale in the US at the fourth quarter of this year in LT and SS trim levels.

The 2016 Camaro coupe retains the overall shape of the 1960s cars, but loses some of the hard edges of the current version. The slightly reduced size and broader use of aluminium make it more than 90 kgs lighter than the current car, which General Motors promise will result in more nimble, responsive handling.

A 2.0-liter, 275 bhp four-cylinder turbo will serve as the base engine. Chevrolet will also offer a new 335 bhp, 385 Nm 3.6-liter V6 and a 6.2-liter V8 that kicks out 455 hp and 617 Nm of torque. The 2.0-litre and 3.6-litre will be offered with both a 6-speed manual and 8-speed automatic; while nothing was mentioned for the V8 model, we reckon the 6.2-litre V8 will only be available with a 6-speed manual.

Chevrolet resurrected the nameplate with the 2010 model year to the delight of Camaro diehard fans after a hiatus of seven model years. “For Camaro enthusiasts, it retains iconic design cues and offers even more performance,” GM product chief Mark Reuss said in a statement. “For a new generation of buyers, the 2016 Camaro incorporates our most innovative engineering ideas.”

Technologies included in the new Camaro are a drive-mode selector that enables the driver to choose between Snow/Ice, Tour, Sport and Track (only in SS models); this calibrates the transmission\'s shift patterns and electric power steering\'s characteristic. The SS models will also get General Motor\'s fast-responding Magnetic Ride Control damping system.

To save weight, GM used aluminium instead of steel for the instrument panel frame, saving 4 kilograms. Aluminium front-suspension links and steel rear-suspension links with “lightening” holes to reduce mass saved another 12 kgs from the current car.

Even the body is body is 28 percent stiffer. Engineers used a new multilink MacPherson strut front suspension with a double-pivot design, which GM said allows for greater precision from the electric power steering.