Chevrolet is putting the new Camaro muscle car on sale officially in Europe.
Like its arch-rival the Ford Mustang, the current Camaro is a modern restyling of the 1960s original (see our video here). Just like the Mustang, the Camaro got steadily uglier through the 1970s and 1980s, so the back-to-basics design is much to be welcomed.
The specification is pure Americana: 6.2 litre V8, 426 bhp (manual transmision only), 155 mph, 0-62 mph in 5.2 seconds, £35,025. Chevrolet says the suspension has been specifically set up for European conditions - that would be for corners, then. It also benefits from 20 inch Pirelli P Zero tyres and Brembo brakes, so it is a long way ahead of the 1960s original, which came with crossply tyres and no discernible brakes of any description.
Rather touchingly, Susan Docherty, President and Managing Director, Chevrolet Europe, said "The Camaro is an ensemble of power, comfort and technology, offering great value for money that cannot be matched by our competitors." That may be true, but what is the competitor for an American car, except another American car? Does anyone agonise over Porsche Boxster vs. Chevrolet Camaro?
We once had a Vauxhall Monaro V8 VXR 500 Supercharged for a weekend (an Australian cousin of the Camaro). It was the most insanely fun car we have ever driven, but we were glad to hand it back (certainly glad to hand it back in one piece, thanks to its combination of 500 bhp and zero traction control). Will the Camaro follow in the wheeltracks of the Monaro, the Corvette and all those Cadillacs that General Motors has tried to import to the UK? We Brits are always happy to see them on the road – so long as they are owned by somebody else.