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Camaro ZL1 1LE: The Spiritual Z/28 Successor

Camaro ZL1 1LE: The Spiritual Z/28 Successor

Today Chevrolet announced a little surpriser for Camaro guys: a 1LE package on the Camaro ZL1. With the official name “ZL1 1LE,” it’s unquestionably a bit of a mouthful to say, but who cares? Basically Chevy added a track package to their track car, which sort of makes a spiritual successor to the fifth-generation Z/28.

The 1LE package is nothing new. Chevy already offers it on the V-6 and SS versions of the car, but has never offered it on the ZL1 prior to now. Opting for the 1LE pack on the ZL1 offers more hardware changes than the base cars, though. In fact, it’s enough changes to yield a car that is about three seconds faster than the ZL1 on GM’s Milford Road Course.

At the core of the ZL1 1LE are new DSSV dampers. If that sounds familiar it is because they were first launched on the fifth-generation Z/28 car, then more recently used on the Colorado ZR2. On the 1LE the dampers are at all four corners of the car, with the front units adjustable thanks to a new adjustable chamber plate housed within them. The rear stabilizer bar also offers three-way adjustability.

Additionally, ZL1 1LE offers a new aerodynamics setup including a carbon fiber rear wing, specific air deflectors and dive planes on the front fascia produce grip-generating downforce to help the car stick harder and drive faster in turns. Not only are they functional, but they’re also sure to make the ZL1 1LE stands out versus the more mundane sixth-generation car.

Rounding out the 1LE package is a lighter wheel, despite being an inch wider than the ZL1’s stock wheels. New Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar 3R tires wrap those wheels that deliver max lateral grip of 1.10g. Developed exclusively for the Camaro ZL1 1LE, the 3R tires are designed to warm up faster to help maintain more consistent grip and speed, lap after lap. The overall footprint grows approximately 10 percent over the ZL1, but the wheel-and-tire package weighs about 1.5 pounds less per corner.

Overall Chevy is saying the ZL1 1LE package is about 60 pounds lighter than the base ZL1, which is fairly significant given the sixth-generation car is light in base form. The lightweight chassis is, of course, propelled by the ZL1’s 650 horsepower supercharged 6.2-liter V-8.

Sales of the Camaro ZL1 1LE will start later this year. The price tag will become known closer to its launch.


About Nick Saporito

AutoVerdict Senior Editor Nick Saporito began writing about cars at age 13. Nick ran a couple of automotive enthusiast sites for several years, before taking some time off to focus on his career and education. By day he's a marketing executive in the telecom world and by night he hangs out here at AV. You'll find him focusing on tech, design and the industry's future.
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  1. ScarredKnight
    Wow....Just wow. GM please apply two more doors and continue making the SS sedan. This platform is simply amazing.

    Yes, THIS! I can really see this as a 4-door sedan, hopefully with an all-new name....NOT just "SS".

    Cort, www.oldcarsstronghearts.com

    pig&cowValves.paceMaker * 1979 CC to 2003 MGM + 81mc

    "After so many dreams have fallen through, it's time that 1 came true" | Earl Thomas Conley | 'Nobody Falls Like A Fool'
    The engineers make pushing this car to limits look easy. With PTM 5 it's pretty amazingly safe near the limits...
    Pushing a car like this to its limits on the track requires a lot of skill, practice and cajones. And a tolerance for bending a $70k car. I seem to recall an anecdote that some Ferarri guys were buying last gen 1LEs as their "I don't car if I bend it" track cars to help them get enough stick time to really push their primary cars. This seems tailor made for that crowd. If you can get the most out of this, you'll probably be fast in just about anything.
    Amazing product development...for those that want the fastest 2 plus 2....this thing is a beast
    Wow....Just wow. GM please apply two more doors and continue making the SS sedan. This platform is simply amazing.
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