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The Top Gear car review: Chevrolet Camaro

£39,200£40,700
6/10
Overall verdict

For: 

If you can pull it off, this thing just oozes charisma. If.

Against: 

Thirsty, poor-quality interior, LHD-only
If you’re seriously considering one, “economy“ and “practicality“ will mean nothing to you. And that’s the point. A purchase like this transcends judgment, and this one even goes round corners.

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Our choice

Chevrolet

6.2 V8 2dr

£34,200
8/10
20mpg
5.20s
432bhp
329g/km

What we say: 

Weirdly charming, if you're into this sort of thing. But watch out; the new Ford Mustang will be available soon in the UK, in RHD, with a V8...

What is it?

A vivid statement of culture and visual pheromone, this. It’s even been honed around the Nürburgring. And it can actually go around corners.

Driving

Underneath the Euro-spec Chevy Camaro, there’s a 4.5-link independent rear end and its very own set of super-stiff dampers and a pair of repositioned and reshaped anti-roll bars. The good news? It corners.

Despite being developed at the Nürburgring, the Camaro soaks up the road with GT-like composure. But rear occupants might want to think twice before embarking on long journeys, as its a bit cramped.

There are two engines - LS3 and L99 - which are bolted to a six-speed manual and auto respectively. They’re pretty much the same, but the automatic gets VVT, which propels it to 62mph 0.2 seconds, erm, slower. Both are 6.2 litres - the manual gets 432hp and the auto 405hp - the stick-shift coupe takes 5.2 seconds to get to 62mph and the rag-top 5.4. The auto coupe does it in 5.4, and the convertible in 5.6.

On the inside

Can’t really carry four in comfort, due to a very taxed rear seating arrangement, but two people can fit snugly. And let’s be honest, this car isn’t for hauling kids and dogs and things.

The A-pillar trim and plastic door panels flex with a gentle prod, and wobbly stitching abounds. The convertible roof flaps around when it’s down, too. Which is all a bit of a shame, because poor interior fixture quality isn’t endemic of today’s GM crop.

Owning

Costs around £35k to get into a Camaro, which for a V8-powered icon, is dirt cheap. But high CO2 and 20mpg on combined cycle (you’ll be lucky to see that) means ownership requires deep pockets. Very deep.

Highlights from the range

Title 0–62 CO2 MPG BHP Price
The fastest
6.2 V8 2dr
5.4s 329g/km 20.0 432 £39,200
The cheapest
6.2 V8 2dr
5.4s 329g/km 20.0 432 £39,200
The greenest
6.2 V8 2dr Auto
5.6s 304g/km 21.5 405 £40,700

Wildcard

How about something completely different?

Wildcard

9/10

Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG

£34,815£83,795
A used E63 Estate. Europe's answer to the quintessential American muscle car