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GM unveils svelte Camaro concept in Detroit

GM Unveils svelte Camaro Concept in Detroit
10.1.06. For many months now, much media hype has surrounded the notion of an all-new Camaro from General Motors.  At the NAIAS which opens on Saturday in Detroit, GM will indeed show off a new-generation concept Camaro, which, along with the Dodge Challenger concept (also on show for the first time - see news section), revives more than a hint of 1960s menace.  American car makers are currently riding a nostagia wave and rediscovering their muscle car roots.  Ford's new Mustang is still outstripping demand (165,000 were sold last year) and is about to grab even more interest with the arrival of the Shelby Mustang GT500 in Detroit this weekend.

If the Camaro concept does eventually make it into production, expect Mustang pricing with a base V6 version costing around $20,000 and less than $30,000 for the all-singing, Corvette-powered 400hp V8.

"We didn't want to do a retro version, we didn't want a copy of the original first-generation Camaro," says GM Vice Chairman, Product Development Bob Lutz.  "However, we did want a beautiful and contemporary car in its own right and one into which we could superimpose the essence of Camaro." 

"The concept recaptures the spirit of the first-generation Camaro, one of the most popular sport coupes ever, and redefines it for new generations. But, and this is a big but, it’s not just a retro car, it’s a great design in and of itself. It truly demonstrates passion and performance, inside and out… in everything from the deeply-dished aluminum gauge faces and the three-spoke steering wheel to the 400-horsepower aluminum V8 engine mated to a six-speed manual gearbox. The chassis is also state of the art, with four-wheel independent suspension and four-wheel disc brakes. And don’t forget the big tires, 21 inches up front and 22 inches at the rear."

"And for those of you who might say, “Well, the Challenger has 35 hp more,” I would just reply that we have a certified 1OO more on tap from the ZO6 engine, should the need arise."

Lutz concludes, "Make no mistake: We would love to build this car. I would love to have one in my garage. But we cannot commit to it just yet. Circumstances dictate that we have other priorities that come first. For now, we’ll just enjoy what we have, and find out what everybody thinks about it, and we’ll make a final decision on it at our earliest opportunity."  

Story: Andy Kirk & GM
Photos: GM

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