Lighter and quicker than ever before

Now that the 2016 Chevrolet Camaro coupe has been unveiled, it’s time to have a closer look at the convertible model. Although we’re still a few months away from a proper auto show, Chevrolet has just confirmed the drop-top, while also releasing a batch of preliminary photos showing the pony with and without the soft-top.

The drop-top Camaro will hit dealerships sometime in the first quarter of 2016, right after Chevy will showcase it at both the Los Angeles and Detroit auto shows. Once in showrooms, it will become GM’s main weapon against the sixth-generation Ford Mustang Convertible.

Just like its coupe sibling, the convertible rides on The General’s Alpha architecture, shared with the Cadillac ATS and CTS. It’s very likely the drop-top will gain the coupe’s engines too and later receive a ZL1 badge.

Updated 05/03/2016: A leaked brochure revealed prices for the 2017 Camaro Convertible. Check the "Prices" section for the full details.

Continue reading to learn more about the Chevrolet Camaro Convertible.

  • 2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible
  • Year:
    2016- 2017
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    inline-4
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    275
  • Torque @ RPM:
    295 @ 3000
  • Displacement:
    2.0 L
  • 0-60 time:
    6 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    155 mph
  • Price:
    34300
  • Price:
  • car segment:
  • size:
  • Purpose:
  • body style:
  • Overall:
    8.7/10

Exterior

2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible High Resolution Exterior
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2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible High Resolution Exterior
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2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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As expected, the Camaro Convertible looks identical to the coupe from the waist down. This means it will sports coupe’s reworked body panels, with highlights including revised front and rear fascias, more aggressive bumpers, and noticeable differences between trims. For instance, the SS model gets a honeycomb mesh for the front grille and intake and horizontal daytime running lights. On the flipside, the four-cylinder and V-6 versions feature horizontal grille slats, as well as chrome strips each side of the "bowtie" emblem, and vertical DLRs. Out back, the SS stands out by means of a trunk lid spoiler and a quad-exhaust arrangement.

In addition to sporting a new design, the Camaro Convertible is also a bit smaller than its predecessor. Specifically, it's about two inches shorter in length, an inch slimmer in width, and an inch shorter in height.

In addition to sporting a new design, the Camaro Convertible is also a bit smaller than its predecessor. Specifically, it’s about two inches shorter in length, an inch slimmer in width, and an inch shorter in height. Its wheelbase and overhangs are shorter than last year’s model as well.

Above the waistline is where the drop-top is notably different. The metal roof was replaced by a retractable soft-top, while the windscreen seems a bit shorter than the coupe’s. The removal of the fixed roof and rear window also resulted in a slightly reshaped trunk lid compared to the coupe’s.

Chevy also introduced a newly designed folding system for the soft-top that’s quicker and takes up less space in the trunk. GM also claims the Camaro is the only convertible in the segment to offer fully automatic operation with latches that automatically release and secure the top, capability of opening and closing at speeds up to 30 mph, remote opening with the key fob, as well as a hard tonneau cover that deploys automatically when the top is folded. Once in place, the tonneau provides a more refined appearance behind the rear seats, a feature the 2015 Ford Mustang Convertible can’t offer.

The electro-hydraulic power roof system is also new, featuring a multilayer construction for a more comfortable and quiet driving experience. This update matches what Ford did with the sixth-generation Mustang Convertible.

Like the coupe, the convertible benefits from a stiffer, lighter structure that helps reduce weight by around 200 pounds compared to the model it replaces. As a result, Chevy claims the drop-top maintains the coupe’s performance-oriented chassis tuning and nimble ride.

Based on GM’s preliminary photos, the Camaro Convertible is one sexy summer ride. And I must confess that although I generally prefer coupes to drop-tops, the sixth-gen Camaro might just be the first pony I’d rather have with a canvas top.

Interior

2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro High Resolution Interior
- image 630505

Note: 2016 Camaro coupe interior pictured.

Much like the exterior, the interior mirrors the coupe’s in just about every detail, plus the button needed to open and close the top.

Novelties include a revised dashboard with an optional 8-inch, configurable instrument cluster and a larger infotainment screen atop the center stack.

Although redesigned for the sixth-generation Camaro, the interior inherited various features from the past. Novelties include a revised dashboard with an optional eight-inch, configurable instrument cluster and a larger infotainment screen atop the center stack. The new Camaro also received GM’s next-generation MyLink system with improved connectivity and functions.

The center stack looks a lot cleaner now with most button placed below the screen, while the previous mechanical brake handle has been replaced by an electronic unit. The interior feels a bit more upscale overall, with cleverly placed chrome inserts and contrast stitching.

The fancy LED ambient lighting system, a segment-first feature, has 24 colors and offers a theatrical "car show" mode that cycles randomly through the entire color spectrum when the car is parked, and will likely be available for the convertible as well.

Drivetrain

2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro
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Although Chevrolet has yet to release engine information, the convertible should be available with the same engine trio as the coupe, starting with the four-cylinder Chevy just introduced as a base unit. Borrowed from the Cadillac ATS and CTS, the turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-pot cranks out 275 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque in the 2016 Camaro. Although this mill will give us the least-powerful Camaro in decades, it will also bring us the most fuel-efficient Camaro yet. More on this when Chevrolet announces fuel economy estimates. For now, all we know is the four-cylinder will enable the Camaro to sprint from 0 to 60 mph in under six seconds, which should be about the same with the convertible model. Also, the turbo-four is Chevy’s response for the Mustang EcoBoost that Ford introduced with the sixth-gen pony.

Although it displaces the same 3.6 liters as its predecessor, the V-6 is actually new, having also received cylinder deactivation technology on top of many upgraded internals.

Previously a base engine, the V-6 will be promoted as a mid-range offering in the upcoming convertible. Although it displaces the same 3.6 liters as its predecessor, the V-6 is actually new, having also received cylinder deactivation technology on top of many upgraded internals. Output now sits at 335 horsepower and 284 pound-feet, up 12 horses and six pound-feet over the previous model. These figures make it the most powerful naturally aspirated V-6 in this segment, putting it above the Mustang by a whopping 35 horsepower. It should make the Camaro faster too, at around 5.7 seconds from 0 to 60 mph.

There will also be a Camaro SS Convertible, featuring the 6.2-liter V-8 that the coupe borrowed from the Corvette Stingray. The LT1 churns out 455 horsepower and 455 pound-feet of torque, meaning customers will get an extra 29 horses and 35 pound-feet over the previous model. The new output will also make the SS 20 horsepower more powerful than the Mustang GT Convertible. Expect the V-8-powered drop-top to sprint to 60 mph in less than five seconds.

In the transmission department, the coupe’s six-speed manual and eight-speed automatic will find their way into the convertible model as well.

There’s reason to believe the ZL1, not yet confirmed, but definitely in the pipeline, will continue as a convertible too. Moreover, with Chevy having already released the first-ever drop-top version of the Corvette Z06, there’s a possibility the track-prepped Z/28 will come with a soft-top as well.

Drivetrain Specifications

Type 2.0L turbo 3.6L V-6 6.2L LT1 direct-injected Small Block V-8
Output 275 HP 335 HP 455 HP
Torque 295 LB-FT @ 3,000 -4,500 RPM 284 LB-FT 455 LB-FT

Prices

Pricing for the Camaro Convertible starts from $33,695, which makes it $7,000 more expensive than the base Camaro coupe. Compared to last year’s model, the redesigned drop-top carries a $1,495 premium. For $33,695, you’ll get to take home the the base 1LT trim, which has a turbo four-cylinder under the hood. Opt for the V-6 powerplant, and the sticker increases to $35,190. The six-cylinder model costs $2,990 more than its predecessor. As for the V-8 powered SS, it fetches $44,295 in 1SS trim and $49,295 in 2SS, which account for $3,795 and $5,895 increases over the previous model, respectively.

2017 Model Year

Prices for 2017 start from $34,300, a $605 increase over last year’s model. For that amount, you’ll take home the 1LT trim with the four-cylinder engine. Update to the V-6 and the sticker increases to $35,795. Moving over to the better equipped 2LT model, the four-cylinder version retails from $38,400, while the V-6 variant comes in at $39,895. Those in need of a V-8 engine will have to pay at least $44,900 for the 1SS. The 2SS model using the same engine fetches $49,900 before options.

These figures are for the manual transmission cars. The optional automatic gearbox adds $1,495. The 50th Anniversary Package costs $2,595 for the 2LT and $1,795 for the 2SS. On the former, the bundle requires you also get the Convenience & Lighting package, which costs $2,800.

2017 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible prices

Model Price
1LT 4-Cyl $34,300
1LT V6 $35,795
2LT 4-Cyl $38,400
2LT V6 $39,895
1SS V8 $44,900
2SS V8 $49,900

Competition

Ford Mustang Convertible

2015 Ford Mustang Convertible High Resolution Exterior
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Redesigned for the 2015 model year, the sixth-generation Mustang is now sportier than ever, thanks to its new chassis complete with an independent rear suspension, a first for the nameplate. The convertible version features discreet styling modifications, a full fabric outer layer for the roof, and a 10mm thick insulation pad for reduced cabin noise. Novelties include a center-mounted single latch that can be operated from the driver’s seat and an electromechanical drive system that folds and unfolds the top twice as fast than the one on the previous model.

The drop-top is available with all the coupe’s engines. There’s a 3.7-liter V-6 rated at 300 horsepower and 280 pound-feet, a 2.3-liter EcoBoost with 310 horses and 320 pound-feet, and the grumpy 5.0-liter V-8 tuned to deliver 435 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of twist. Customers can choose between three trim levels. The V6 starts from $29,300, the EcoBoost Premium retails from $34,800, while the GT Premium fetches $41,800 before options.

Find out more about the 2015 Ford Mustang Convertible in our detailed review here.

BMW 4 Series Convertible

2014 BMW 4 Series Convertible High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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A comparison between the 4 Series and the Camaro might have seemed outrageous a few years ago, but that’s no longer the case. Sure, some might favor the Bimmer’s more premium interior and fancy gadgets, but the Camaro’s lighter chassis and upgraded engines will definitely bring new enthusiasts into Chevy dealerships.

The 4 Series Convertible can be had in two version here in the U.S. The base model is the 428i, which features a 2.0-liter turbo-four with 240 horsepower and a 0-to-60 mph sprint of 6.2 seconds. The second model is the 435i, powered by a 3.0-liter inline-six rated at 300 horsepower. This one sprints from 0 to 60 mph in 5.4 seconds with RWD and 5.2 seconds with AWD. Pricing starts from $48,750 for the 428i and $54,900 for the 435i. All-wheel-drive adds $2,000 to each trim.

Find out more about the 4 Series Convertible in our full review here.

Conclusion

2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible High Resolution Exterior
- image 634843

Although the new Camaro Convertible won’t be here for another six months or so, we already know what to expect. Much like the coupe, the new convertible received significant improvements over its predecessor, which will come in handy against the updated Mustang. Moreover, the upgraded folding system and the segment-first tonneau cover should keep Camaro enthusiasts happy and maybe bring new customers into Chevrolet dealerships.

  • Leave it
    • Stiff competition from Ford
    • Still not seen as a proper competitor for the 4 Series

Updated History

Updated 12/22/2015: A leaked ordering guide revealed prices for the 2016 Camaro Convertible. According to it, most of the Camaro models received significant updates when compared to the previous year. Full details after the jump.

Updated 06/24/3015: Chevrolet dropped the official details on the new generation Camaro Convertible which will arrive at dealerships in early 2016.

Rendering

2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible Exterior Exclusive Renderings Computer Renderings and Photoshop
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Press Release

Let the sun shine in. Chevrolet will offer a convertible model of the all-new 2016 Camaro, featuring the segment’s most advanced top.

2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible High Resolution Exterior
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The 2016 Camaro is the only convertible in the segment to offer all of the following:

Fully automatic operation with latches that automatically release and secure the top
Capability of opening or closing at speeds up to 30 mph
Remote opening with the key fob
A hard tonneau cover that deploys automatically, providing a more refined, finished appearance when the top is lowered and stowed.

The electro-hydraulic power roof system features multilayer construction – including acoustic and thermal barriers – designed for a comfortable, quiet driving experience in all seasons. The top emulates the sleek silhouette of the Camaro coupe.

“The 2016 Camaro coupe will set the benchmark for the segment in terms of technology, performance and design,” said Todd Christensen, Camaro marketing manager. “Adding the most sophisticated top in the segment brings another level of refinement – and driving enjoyment – to the Camaro convertible.”

The new Camaro convertible arrives in early 2016.

Like the Camaro coupe, the convertible benefits from a stiffer, lighter structure that helps reduce total vehicle weight by at least 200 pounds compared to the model it replaces. Consequently, the Camaro convertible retains the coupe’s sharp chassis tuning and nimble reflexes.

“From the beginning, the Camaro’s architecture was developed to incorporate a convertible with uncompromised driving dynamics,” said Al Oppenheiser, Camaro chief engineer. “Customers will appreciate what they don’t feel: quivers, cowl shake or an under-damped chassis typically found in a four-seat convertible.”

2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible High Resolution Exterior
- image 634841

The architecture also enables the Camaro convertible’s sleek design, allowing the top to fold down completely beneath the belt line. The hard tonneau cover automatically covers the folded top, creating a finished appearance.

“With many convertibles, you have to affix a tonneau cover manually – if it’s done at all,” said Tom Peters, design director. “The Camaro convertible’s automatically deploying hard tonneau not only makes it easier to enjoy convertible driving when the inspiration hits, it ensures the car always looks its best.”

About the 2016 Camaro

The sixth-generation Chevrolet Camaro offers higher levels of performance, technology and refinement and is designed to maintain the sporty car segment leadership earned over the past five years.

Offered in LT and SS models, it provides a faster, more nimble driving experience and a broader powertrain range.

Six all-new powertrain combinations are offered, including a 2.0L Turbo rated at an SAE-certified 275 horsepower, an all-new 3.6L V-6 producing and SAE-certified 335 horsepower, and the LT1 6.2L V-8, which is SAE-certified at 455 horsepower and 455 lb-ft of torque – the most powerful Camaro SS ever. Each engine is available with a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmission.

Camaro’s leaner, stiffer platform and slightly smaller dimensions are accentuated by a dramatic, sculpted exterior. Meticulously tuned in the wind tunnel, the exterior contributes to performance through reduced aerodynamic lift for better handling, while enhancing highway fuel efficiency.

Inside, the driver-focused cabin integrates class-leading control technologies, including a new Driver Mode Selector, configurable instrument cluster and a customizable ambient lighting feature.

2016 - 2017 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible High Resolution Exterior
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The 2016 Camaro coupe and convertible will be produced at General Motors’ Lansing Grand River assembly plant in Lansing, Mich.

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