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Chevrolet recently revealed its 2013 Camaro model with subtle changes, most notably of which was the inclusion of in-car navigation to its sports car. At the time of the release, the American automaker also spoke about a new 1LE performance package, and details of that have now surfaced along with an extensive photo gallery.
As if there weren’t enough possibilities for the Chevrolet Camaro already, the automaker announced today that it will introduce a new 1LE performance package to further augment the already-muscular Camaro SS coupe.
“With the 2013 model year, Camaro offers something for almost every driver, including: the 323-horsepower, 30-mpg 2LS; the all-new, 580-horsepower supercharged ZL1 convertible; the COPO Camaro for drag-racing; and the new 1LE for amateur track days,” said John Fitzpatrick, Camaro marketing manager. “We expect the range of choices, and enhancements for 2013, will help Camaro remain America’s most-popular sports car.”
Popular it is, given the recent announcement that between the Camaro and Corvette, Chevrolet sports cars control a third of the U.S. market segment. As Fitzpatrick said, the automaker hopes to continue boosting that control by offering a growing line of specialized cars.
That’s where the 1LE comes in: it’s a Camaro SS coupe with unique gearing, suspension tuning, and tires that make the car track-ready to the tune of more than 1 g in lateral acceleration. Chevrolet says the latest iteration of its pony car ran a sub three-minute lap at Virginia International Raceway, where we recently tested the new ZL1 Camaro.
“The Camaro 1LE combines the best elements of the SS and ZL1 to take road-racing performance to a whole new level,” said Al Oppenheiser, Camaro chief engineer. “That the 1LE breaks the three-minute lap at VIR puts it in the upper echelon of performance cars. That it starts under $40,000 makes the Camaro 1LE one of the most affordable, most capable track-day cars offered by any manufacturer.”
Perhaps more interesting than performance specifications alone, Chevrolet is taking preemptive measures to ensure customers have the chance to actually enjoy their purchase. The trouble with buying a high-power pony car is that owners seldom have legal outlets for all that power. Thankfully, the automaker thought of that and is already working on Touring Class competition approval from the SCCA with the 1LE package. Once accomplished, that classification will mean the new package is a race-ready track car form the factory, and for a bargain price.
Aside from the modifications listed above, the 1LE comes with a litany of ZL1-spec parts including a stronger fuel pump, 20×10-inch aluminum wheels and improved suspension components. For the most part, modifications that make the 1LE are in place to improve traction, so Chevrolet also packaged higher-capacity rear-axle half shafts to cope with the stress that comes with added grip.
Originally introduced in 1988, the 1LE package returns this fall with the 2013 Camaro release.
GALLERY: 2012 ZL1 Camaro
Chevrolet is doing it big at the 2011 SEMA Show as it will releases multiple Camaros and Corvettes this year. Chris Perry, the vice president of Chevrolet global marketing and strategy, says, “Go to any Corvette or Camaro enthusiast event and you will have a hard time finding a factory-stock vehicle. These are cars that owners treat as canvases to express their personalization and high-performance dreams– and have been for decades. The SEMA Show is the perfect venue to test new customization concepts and to inspire new owners to start modifying their cars.”
One of the highlights for Chevrolet at SEMA will be the “Custom Camaro,” a full-size tribute to the original Hot Wheels 1:64 scale model line back in 1968. Other Camaros present at the upcoming SEMA Show include the Red Zone Concept, Camaro Synergy Series Concept, Camaro 1LE Concept and finally, the Camaro ZL1 Carbon Concept.
The Red Zone Camaro convertible features a new-for-2012 Crystal Claret red exterior paint job. A showcase of Camaro style, the convertible will display the personalization options available through a collection of carefully selected accessories including a new heritage stripe graphic, body-color grill and convertible wind screen, “RS” underhood liner, polished strut tower brace, Chevrolet licensed Pedders suspension lowering kit, and 21 inch silver polished wheels.
For its interior, the Red Zone will receive a Titanium leather interior with Silver Ice accents, “Camaro” logo floor mats, soft black instrument panel inserts, and Silver Ice door and instrument panel inserts. Designer Adam Barry tells us, “This is a Camaro for those who want great looks and a performance personality. It’s a simple yet dramatic statement that is uniquely Camaro.”
Now for the Camaro Synergy Series, GM aims to put on the best of the best of Camaro accessories and present the concept in a distinct red accented silver color scheme. Chevrolet will pay close attention to the latest Synergy concept as it could be brought to production if it receives the desired amount of positive reception. Highlights on the Synergy include a Silver Ice exterior with Synergy Black stripes along the hood, body color ground effects, 21 inch black wheels with red accents, Chevrolet licensed Pedders suspension lowering kit, red Brembo brakes, a red engine cover, SS underhood liner, polished strut tower brace, a short-throw shifter by Hurst, Black leather on red stitching interior, and “Camaro” logo floor mats. Synergy decals will be prominent displayed on this Camaro while SS or RS exterior badges will be removed. Anything to set this beast apart!
The 1LE option code was first available in the third generation of the Camaro. Further refined, the new 1LE concept will be a track focused package and will feature production components from both the Camaro SS as well as the upcoming ZL1. Victory Red paint and a matte black hood with hash mark decal flatters the Camaro 1LE’s exterior. Satin black accents will highlight the LE’s splitter, rocker panels, rear spoiler and its side mirrors. The 1LE also gets black leather interior with Light Stone stitching, door and instrument panels in Graphite Silver, a ZL1 shifter and flat-bottom steering wheel and a custom pedal kit. For its performance components, the close-ratio six speed manual 1LE will get lighweight 20 inch racing wheels wrapped around by sticky Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar G asymmetrical tires. Brakes are a set of hardcore six pot Brembo brakes in the front and four pot in the rear. Finally, the 1LE’s suspension will feature a trick Magnetic Ride Control set up as well as electric power steering.
Camaro chief engineer Al Oppenheiser explains that the, “Camaro 1LE concept is all about the track. It’s an all-out race car package that pays tribute to that special option from the past.”
Finally, a ZL1 Carbon Concept Camaro will be featured as well. As advertised, the ZL1 will receive layers of naked carbon fiber to present a car that’s all about function. The ZL1 Carbon gets exposed-weave carbon fiber trim on its “Mohawk” hood, rear spoiler, and instrument panel and interior inserts too. A set of 20 inch wheels in satin black complete the aggressive look of the ZL1′s exterior. Performance components featured in the ZL1 Carbon are the same Brembo brakes found in the 1LE, a dual exhaust kit with active exhaust and diffuser, Manetic Ride Control, short throw shifter, flat bottom steering wheel, and a sporty Jet Black leather interior with sueded microfiber seat inserts and Torch Red stitching.
As Tony Roma, Camaro ZL1 program engineering manager, said, “If its styling doesn’t intimidate you, its performance on the track will.”
We begin the Corvettes with the Corvette Carlisle Blue Grand Sport, celebrating 30 years of “Corvettes at Carlisle,” one of the largest annual Corvette events in North America. The concept Corvette will feature a new Carlisle Blue exterior with Pearl White racing stripes, rocker panels, and new Torque 2 wheels. The special Corvette will receive a hand built dry sump 6.2 liter LS3 engine mated to a six speed manual transmission. The Corvette will also get Magnetic Selective Ride Control, gray six-piston brake calipers, Goodyear F1 Supercar Gen 2 tires, dual mode exhaust, and a racing pedal package. The Carlisle Blue Concept will also get a “4LT option” Ebony/Titanium leather color interior and blue stitching, a new Bose nine-speaker audio set up, USB port, audio input, touch screen iPod integration, and Grand Sport console lid and floor mats.
Finally, following the success of Corvette Racing C5.R and C6.R racing driver Ron Fellows, who is honored with the induction into the National corvette Museum’s Hall of Fame in 2011, Chevrolet pays tribute to Fellows’ achievement by creating the Torch Red Corvette Z06 Ron Fellows ‘Hall of Fame’ Tribute. The special edition Corvette features the Z06 performance package, Magnetic Selective Ride Control, CFZ carbon fiber package with splitter and rocker moldings, carbon fiber raced hood, red brake calipers, black headlamp housing and mirrors.
As for its interior, ebony leather with red stitching set a theme for performance and racing pedals, Alcantara steering wheel, shift knob, and parking brake handle complete the look. Check out the gallery below and see the complete 2011 SEMA Show preview here.