The Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Cup auto will make its race debut during the 2018 Daytona Speedweeks in February.
Seven-time Cup champion Jimmie Johnson - driver of the #48 Lowe's Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports - joined Mark Reuss, executive vice president of GM Global Product Development, to reveal the new race vehicle at Chevrolet's headquarters in Detroit.
Chevrolet engineers developed the body shape's aerodynamics for racing using computational fluid dynamics analysis and reduced-scale and full-scale wind-tunnel testing.
Seven-time NASCAR Cup champion Jimmie Johnson was on hand for the announcement, a driver that has raced for the bow tie since his Cup debut in 2001. Chevrolet could have gone with the Impala or Malibu, but the Camaro is a much cooler auto for the track. The look is certainly different than that of the Camaro ZL1 street auto, but the idea was to maintain as much of that character as possible.
The Camaro ZL1 brings a unique, track-focused legacy to NASCAR.
The ZL1 was originally an all aluminum racing engine in the 1960's.
In 1969, a few enterprising dealers _ specifically Don Yenko and Baldwin/Motion Performance, both in Pennsylvania; Fred Gibb in LaHarpe, Ill., and Nickey Chevrolet in Chicago _ used Chevrolet's Central Office Production Order system to get the ZL1 engine installed in 69 regular-production Camaros. The Mustang GT and Challenger R/T can be ordered with a V8 for about $4,000 less, which has Chevrolet reconsidering the available trim packages for the pony auto. The cars became instant legends on the street and dragstrip. The 2018 Camaro ZL1 has a 650-horsepower supercharged engine. The SS, which replaced the Impala four years ago, has won 70 MENCS races for the manufacturer. Chevrolet drivers also have scored a record 30 Cup championships. It's nice to have a muscle auto in the lineup and I wonder if Ford will match Chevy with a Mustang for NASCAR. Hendrick purchased VIN 001 at a Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction for $250,000, with all proceeds benefiting the United Way.