Chevrolet’s new 2017 Camaro ZL1 has set a blisteringly-quick lap time at the Nurburgring, beating its predecessor and teaching some of its European rivals a lesson in the process.
The video below shows a Camaro ZL1 being thrown around the Nurburgring, lapping the circuit a 7:29.60. A sub-7:30 run means the 2017 Camaro ZL1 is 11.67 seconds faster than the fifth-generation Camaro that it replaces.
It also means it is faster than the Ford Shelby GT350R, Lamborghini Gallardo LP570-4 Superleggera, Koenigsegg CCX, Porsche 911 GT2 (997), Mercedes AMG GT S and McLaren 650S Spider.
For anyone seriously questioning whether or not America can produce a thoroughbred, here’s your answer. Driver Drew Cattell, who also works as the Camaro’s ride and handling engineer, managed a fearless seven and a half minutes behind the ZL1 and returned with a new record for the Camaro. Al Oppenheiser, chief engineer of the Camaro, said:
“To be almost 12 seconds quicker than the fifth-generation ZL1 is a testament to the advanced design and technology of the new ZL1.”
The ZL1 shares its 6.2-litre supercharged V8 LT4 powertrain with the C7 Corvette Z06, which produces 485kW of power and 881Nm of torque. Power is transferred to the rear wheels via a controversial new 10-speed automatic transmission. The 10R90 transmission is available only in the ZL1, and offers faster shift times than Porsche’s PDK transmission, according to the manufacturer.
In addition, GM has fit FE4-spec magnetic ride control dampers which allowed engineers to fine-tune the ZL1’s ride through a magnetic fluid that can change consistency 1000 times every second.
“Many fast laps around the Nordschleife are dramatic, with lots of oversteer and steering input,” Drew Cattell said. “Not so with the ZL1, which is extremely planted and stable, almost calm. With Magnetic Ride and great overall chassis balance, the ZL1 is all about being inch perfect at every turn and carrying a lot of speed.”
Al Oppenheiser said: “From the improved aerodynamics, mass reduction and 650-hp LT4 to the Magnetic Ride Control, electronic limited-slip differential and Custom Launch Control, the ZL1 was designed to take on the world’s most challenging track, making it right at home on any track, road or drag strip anywhere.”
Check out the video below to see how it all went. Unfortunately, the Camaro ZL1 is not on sale in Australia and isn’t likely to be any time soon.