I'm disappointed. I truly thought that this modern-day Camaro - created with the global resources of GM on an excellent rear-wheel-drive chassis with an independent rear suspension and married with arresting styling that wasn't too retro but was clearly a Camaro - would finally be a muscle car I could love. Because, you see, I've never much cared for muscle cars before: I was too young to appreciate them in the '60s and '70s, when they were still cool, and by the time I was driving in the '80s, they were, to me, the epitome of Detroit tackiness.
But, no, I finally drive the all-new 2010 Chevy Camaro, and I come away thinking, THIS is the new Camaro? It doesn't feel as fast as its 426-hp rating, it doesn't sound that great, it feels too big, and it's hard to see out of. But my biggest complaint is about the interior. Why, oh, why couldn't GM have put another five hundred dollars into this cabin? It has lost 99% of the Camaro concept car's coolness. The aluminum is all gone. The specialness is all gone. It's just another cheap GM interior with mediocre plastics. The basic interior design is okay, but the cost-cutters spent way too much time in here.
I give the exterior its due: it's great, and the car looks like nothing else on the road. The car attracts lots of attention, and you have people follow you into parking lots to go ga-ga over it.
I really thought that this new Camaro would simply blow the Ford Mustang and the Dodge Challenger into the weeds. I thought it would stand head and shoulders above them as a modern muscle car that had enough Camaro-ness to please the faithful but also enough slickness and refinement to pull people out of imports. But what we have here is just an updated version of an ancient formula. Don't get me wrong: lots of people will, rightly, love this car, and the 300-hp V-6 model, especially, has a lot going for it. But it hasn't transformed me into a lover of muscle cars.
Joe DeMatio, Executive Editor