There were plenty of skeptics when Chevrolet said it would bring back its Camaro, a few years back, but if the Gen-5 model’s sales numbers are any indication, it’s been a solid hit for the Detroit maker.
But in today’s hotly competitive market, those 500,000 sales might be a nice milestone, but Camaro will have to keep the customer’s coming. And that’s becoming a fair bit more difficult to do, what with an all-new Mustang on the verge of reclaiming pony segment leadership for Ford Motor Co.
Not to worry, Chevy fans. There’s a sixth-generation Camaro in the works and due to reach market for the 2016 model-year. Better yet, after giving us a vague tease of what to expect with a black-and-white silhouette image back in January, Chevrolet has kindly released some new images that give a brief, but clearer impression of what to expect for ’16.
One thing is clear, said Chevy, the outgoing model “sets the bar high for the next chapter of the car’s history.”
The three shots shown here were included at the end of a promotional video highlighting the current Mustang’s performance – both on track and in showrooms.
Beyond that, Chevrolet isn’t saying much, though one can get a good sense of what’s coming despite the camouflage on the car in the video.
The overall look appears to be a bit sleeker and refined – in the manner of a well-toned bodybuilder. The basic layout of the nose retains the look introduced a year ago, with the larger grille below the bumper. The headlamps, meanwhile, sink deep into what appears to be a split upper grille.
The roofline appears to bring one of the bigger changes, in line with reports that the 2016 Camaro will adopt a sort of double-bubble layout, with a little more headroom for each front seat passenger. That would be particularly useful for those buying a next-generation ZL1, for example, with aspirations of strapping on a helmet and heading for the nearest track.
What you can’t discern from the video, however, is that the 2016 Chevrolet Camaro will be more than just a rework. It migrates to General Motors’ new Alpha platform, a rear-drive architecture first used for the well-reviewed Cadillac ATS line. How much of the underlying componentry will be shared remains to be seen, but clearly, GM has designed in the ability to produce a truly track-capable version of the Camaro.
(Mustang ponies up and regains sales lead over Camaro. For more, Click Here.)
The wheelbase of the new Camaro should be a bit shorter than the outgoing model, in keeping with the dimensions of the Caddy ATS. But the basic dimensions of the muscle car are largely unchanged.
(Click Here for details to see the special edition marking the Camaro’s final run.)
What Chevrolet clearly hopes won’t change is the strong response American pony car fans have had since the Camaro was brought to life. After years in the shadow of Mustang, it has been the segment’s top-seller. And, in an unusual development, demand has remained strong even as the Gen-5 Camaro approaches its final year of production.
(To see the first production ready Fisker Rocket Mustang, Click Here.)
But the all-new 50th Anniversary Mustang has been gaining strong momentum since its launch, sales up 32% so far this year in the U.S. – with demand also growing as it begins its first-ever global roll-out. Ford is planning to add an assortment of variants, such as the GT350, to build demand in the coming years.
Chevy hasn’t been a slouch when it comes to offering multiple Camaro packages. The ZL1, the most powerful variant ever, also has a more dubious achievement as the only remaining Detroit model to be labelled a “gas-guzzler” by the EPA. Its 6.2-liter V-8 manages only 14 mpg in the combined City/Highway driving cycle.