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Pricing: 2012 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 starts at $54,995

Consumer Reports News: November 15, 2011 02:58 PM

The LA Auto Show may be known for its green-car unveilings, but don’t forget, Los Angeles is a classic center for automotive enthusiasm and trends. Alongside the Chevrolet Spark EV, the company will be showing the most-powerful factory-built Camaro, the Camaro ZL1. Today, Chevrolet announced that coupe pricing will start at $54,995, with destination charges and bravado included.

While that steep price may make many long-time Camaro enthusiasts do a double take, so should the claimed performance. The Camaro ZL1 features a 6.2-liter V8 engine with 580 horsepower and 556 lb.-ft. of torque.

Assuming the driver can deftly apply that power to the ground, Chevrolet claims the automatic version will achieve 0-60 mph 3.9 seconds from a rolling start and traverse the quarter mile in 12 seconds at 119 mph. Of course, from a stand still, the car may sit and spin a bit, hurting those figures.

Top speed is claimed at 184 mph and maximum later grip is a magic 1.0 g.

The six-speed automatic transmission adds $1,185. There are a few other options available, such as a moonroof ($900), stripes ($470), carbon-fiber hood insert ($600), and suede package ($500).

In its press release, General Motors touts how well the Camaro ZL1 stacks up against some super cars and the Ford Shelby Mustang GT 500. Tough thing is, the Shelby in the comparison chart is a 2012, and the new GT 500 for 2013 has 650 hp. Yes, the muscle car wars are still very much alive.

The 2012 Camaro ZL1 Coupe will go on sale this spring, and it will be joined by the 2013 Camaro ZL1 Convertible in the summer of 2012.

Jeff Bartlett

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