A lot of companies produce track-oriented models of their sports cars for people who like to cover some serious asphalt during the weekend. Chevrolet is releasing a track-day variant of the Camaro, the 1LE, which hits this fall.
Chevy aims to boss the Boss around
Making cars for track days has been a specialty of some car makers for a long time. Lotus, Porsche, Aston Martin, Ferrari and Pagani all make models of their production cars to race specifications so buyers can pick up their cars from dealerships, put them on trucks and take them straight to the track. Most of these cars, though, are beyond the means of many people.
However, Ford introduced track packages to the Mustang, specifically the Laguna Seca package to the Boss 302 trim. For less than $60,000, the buyer can pick up a race-ready Mustang and hit the raceway. Camaro owners have to had pay out the nose to customize their cars for the track until recently, when Chevrolet announced that it was readying a track-ready Camaro called the 1LE, according to USA Today.
Option on Camaro SS
The 1LE package, according to USA Today, isn’t its own model but rather an options package that can be added to the Camaro SS, similar to the Laguna Seca package on the Boss 302 Mustang.
The car combines components from the SS and ZL1 Camaro models, according to Inside Line, such as the 6.2-liter LS3 engine and Tremec six-speed short-throw transmission from the SS. It gets the steering wheel from the ZL1, as well as the high-volume fuel pump and some suspension components.
The car is also tuned for handling with upgraded rear shocks, larger stabilizers in the front and rear and a more capable rear axle. According to Fox News, the improved suspension and power steering system make the car capable of pulling up to 1G in turns.
The car also gets a matte black hood and spoilers for the lower front lip and the trunk to give it a bit more downforce.
Not bad for a track toy
The car is reportedly going to cost less $40,000 and Chevrolet posits that it is the most affordable track day car for that amount.
Given that the Ford Mustang Boss 302 with the Laguna Seca package costs $49,195, it would certainly appear so. Track cars from other manufacturers can easily cost 20 times that amount. For instance, the Aston Martin DBR9, according to Car and Driver, runs about $900,000.
However, some track toys come close. For instance, the Caterham Seven Classic starts at $29,580, though the Caterham is a kit car; it requires the owner install an engine and transmission, along with a few other components. That said, $40,000 can build a pretty good example that would give both the 302 and 1LE a serious run for their money as the Seven is much lighter and more nimble than the Mustang or Camaro.
Car and Driver: http://www.caranddriver.com/features/aston-martin-dbr9