New Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Can Hit 60 MPH In First Gear
You no longer need to shift to prove a pointby Ciprian Florea, on
Although hitting 60 mph from a standing start as quick as possible isn’t exactly relevant unless you take your car to the drag strip, it’s a feature automakers have been using in their marketing blurbs for decades. Getting up to 60 mph as quick as possible depends on many factors beyond horsepower and torque. It’s also about grippy tires, whether power is sent to the front, rear or all four wheels, and how fast you or the automatic transmission can change gears. Granted, automatics are usually quicker than manuals, but that might not be the case with the brand-new Chevrolet Camaro ZL1.
According to Camaro engineer Al Oppenheiser, the new supercharged ZL1 can reach 60 mph in first gear. With the manual transmission, this means no shifting, which results in a quicker sprint. Given that the new vehicle is not only more powerful, but lighter too, we can expect a significant performance increase when the car hits the drag strip. With the previous-gen ZL1 needing four seconds to get from 0 to 60 with the manual, the redesigned model should be able to hit the benchmark in the mid-three-second range. That’s just a second slower than supercars such as the LaFerrari or a Tesla Model S with the new 100-kWh battery, and a tremendous figure for a muscle car.
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Why it matters
Muscle cars have evolved quite dramatically in recent years; to the point they’re no longer traditional muscle cars. Except for the Dodge Challenger that is. While FCA’s coupe is still the heavy, old-school car introduced almost a decade ago, both the Chevy Camaro and the Ford Mustang have ditched their no-nonsense roots and moved toward the sports coupe segment. Both have independent rear suspension systems, are lighter than ever, and deliver performance similar (and in some cases better) than German performance cars such as the BMW M4 and Mercedes-AMG C63. Sure, they may no longer be appealing to die-hard muscle car enthusiasts, but the progress is far too significant to ignore. And to be honest, not having to worry about shifting toward 60 mph is the kind of performance all muscle cars should be about.
Read our full review on the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 here.