Pony car aficionados will easily identify the not-so-secret recipe for the Chevrolet Camaro. Piles of go-power and cornering grip are packed into a rear-drive, two-door sports coupe with racy styling providing as much appeal as the power. While the V6-powered Camaro is no slouch, the 6.2-liter V8 in the SS sounds the way a muscle car should. High-performance fans will rejoice at the stripped-back-to-basics 500-hp Z/28 and the fire-breathing 580-hp ZL1. Sun-lovers will enjoy the convertibles.
With this much power on tap, it's a blessing the Camaro is good in more than just a straight line. Handling and braking performance are impressive, even though the car's weight and size undermine its agility and sporty character. Ride comfort is very taut, bordering on stiff, but avoids being punishing.
Don't be surprised that practicality isn't the Camaro's main mission in life. Driver visibility is poor, hurt by thick roof pillars and the tiny glass area imposed by the car's cartoon-character styling. Some interior controls also place style over function. Finally, looking for fuel economy with this big V8 proves a fool's errand.