Last year, we pitted the 2010 Ford Mustang GT against the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS. Not so surprisingly, we left that week with a common thought, the Camaro looks awesome, but on par, the Mustang wins our vote.
Last year, the Mustang had over a 100 horsepower disadvantage, yet with less weight to push around the Mustang could more than hang with the Camaro. For 2011, Ford stepped up its game dropping the new “Coyote” 5.0 engine into the GT. This engine upgrade changed the game giving the Mustang GT a whopping 412hp. GM upgraded the new 2011 V6 engine, but the V8 in the SS Camaro is basically the same with 426hp. Dont get us wrong, 420hp is a great deal of power and the SS is by no means a slow car, but with its weight disadvantage, it’s not much of a match to the Mustang anymore.
What’s new for the 2011 Camaro then? Not much as far as we can tell. Our favorite new feature is the Heads Up Display. It’s crisp and clear with nice transitions between info and has lots of info that displays. It’s not just a speedo and RPM tach, it also displays radio information, cruise control information, and even alerts for things like leaving your blinker on too long. The retro style of the interior is still appealing to us as well, although style over function was definitely key in the design of the Camaro. You still get gauges that are hard to read, the steering wheel that doesnt fit or form to your hands, seats that are flat and cooshee – not bolstered or supportive – and you still have the big plasticy door panels. The trunk is somewhat large but with a small opening and shallow floor, loading things is difficult at best.
So the reasons for purchasing the Camaro are the same as well. It’s opposing looks, loud exhaust, and 426hp powering the rear wheels makes for a fun and exciting car. All of this in an affordable car, most people would say the benefits certainly outweigh the negatives of this great American muscle car. As for the power issue, there are plenty of performance upgrade available, and GM has anounce recently that they will be launching a special edition of the Camaro every six months starting with the ZL1 showed at the Chicago Auto show. The ZL1 sports the LSA V8, 6.2 liter supercharged engine with 550 horsepower. So keep an eye out for more great Camaros coming from GM soon.
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