I got plenty of seat time in the Camaro SS, including a 750-mile road trip to New Jersey, some track time at New Jersey Motorsports Park's Thunderbolt Raceway, and some city driving around Ann Arbor. After all that, I wasn't too impressed. Granted, the car creates a lot of attention with its looks. During my trek out East, numerous truckers honked at the car, and a guy in a Subaru Impreza WRX gave me thumbs-up and then wanted to race me down the Pennsylvania Turnpike. At a rest stop in Ohio, someone approached me to ask if I would take a picture of them standing next to the car. Naturally, I obliged.
The Camaro feels massive. When I sat in the drivers seat, all I could see is the huge cowl on the hood. Of course, the pleasure in this is knowing that underneath it lies 426 hp waiting to be put to use by your right foot. And when you do, the Camaro is fast; it sounds good, and it can lay serious rubber. The interior is a bit disappointing, however. In particular, the huge, silver-painted plastic trim piece on the interior door panel is awful. The front seats are surprisingly comfy for long trips, but they lack any lumbar support for aggressive driving.
I'm glad the Camaro is back, but I hope that Chevy can iron out some details and really solidify it as a legitimate $35,000 sports car. Otherwise, there are lots of other ways to go fast and have fun in that price range.
Mike Ofiara, Road Test Coordinator