2020 Chevrolet Camaro

Performance


#3 out of 8 in Sports Cars

MSRP
$25,000
U.S. News Best Price Program

2020 Chevrolet Camaro Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 8.8

The 2020 Chevrolet Camaro certainly lives up to its sports car billing. Whether you stick with the enjoyable four-cylinder base engine or upgrade to one of the stronger V6 or V8 options, all of the engine choices have enough power for just about any driving situation. The Camaro also boasts nimble handling, a smooth ride, and decent gas mileage with the base engine.

  • "Now in its sixth generation, the … Chevy Camaro is much smaller, lighter and more refined than its predecessor. It still delivers a visceral driving experience that will satisfy any enthusiast, but it doesn't beat you or sacrifice comfort for performance like some Camaros of the past." -- Kelley Blue Book (2018)
  • "Hustling both the V-6 LT and the V-8 SS through Hell's angelic country roads proved a revelation. This is the most driver-focused Camaro ever. It fits you like a custom suit–no unnecessary sheetmetal weighing you down, your hands and feet moving easily over smartly placed controls, the car light and direct and quick as you flick the wheel and snap off the shifts." -- Automobile Magazine (2016)
  • "Driving the V-6 is an altogether separate experience from piloting the SS, which feels a bit like a taller [C7] Corvette Stingray with a vestigial back seat, but both are fantastic. Yet there's no reason to feel swindled if you get the V-6; it returns the right sensations, makes the right noises, and delivers dynamic fidelity on par with far less humble cars." -- Car and Driver (2016)

Acceleration and Power

This Chevy comes standard with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that puts out 275 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. The four-banger doesn't scream muscle car, but it puts out plenty of juice and helps the Camaro accelerate quickly.

Being a Camaro, of course, there are more options. You can opt for a 3.6-liter V6 that produces 335 horsepower and 284 pound-feet of torque. Models with this engine accelerate more eagerly than those with the turbo-four, and they feel stronger at higher speeds. That said, it still doesn’t hold a candle to the available V8s.

The Camaro LT1 and SS feature a 6.2-liter V8 that puts out 455 horsepower and 455 pound-feet of torque. The Camaro ZL1 features a supercharged version of the same engine, and it produces 650 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque. These are the biggest and baddest engines in the Camaro lineup, and they deliver blistering acceleration.

A six-speed manual transmission comes standard. The turbo-four is available with an eight-speed automatic, while the V6 and V8 engines are offered with a 10-speed automatic. While it just feels right to drive a sports car with a manual transmission, you won't be disappointed in the smooth-shifting automatic.

With its base engine and the manual transmission, the Camaro gets an EPA-estimated 20 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway. Those ratings are about average for the sports car class.

The Camaro's fuel efficiency drops as the engines get more powerful. With the V6 and the manual transmission, this Chevy gets 16 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. Ratings sit at 16/24 mpg and 14/20 mpg, respectively, in models with the 455-horsepower and 650-horsepower V8s. Fuel economy ratings improve by 1 to 2 mpg when the Camaro is equipped with the automatic transmission.

  • "We also spent some time in the base 1LT with the turbocharged 4-cylinder and 1LE Track package and came away quite impressed. When equipped with the 6-speed manual, we were able to turn a 0-to-60 run in just under 6 seconds -- pretty impressive, considering the engine's size and 275 hp output." -- Autotrader
  • "The standard 275-horsepower turbocharged 4-cylinder engine is strong enough to back up the Camaro's sexy styling, but the 335-horsepower V6 is quicker off the line and offers a more satisfying driving experience. Step up to the V8-powered SS if you can. Its 455-horsepower 6.2-liter engine is shared with the [C7] Corvette and delivers serious performance when you want it. And its V8 rumble is intoxicating. With 650 horsepower the supercharged V8 in the Camaro ZL1 will make the hairs on the back of your neck stand tall. Although we prefer the 6-speed manual, the … automatic transmission is a winner." -- Kelley Blue Book (2018)
  • "The standard turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine offers an EPA-estimated 30 mpg highway, but it still puts down 275 hp, certainly enough to take it out of fuel-sipper territory. The available V6 is much more than a stopgap on the way to the V8. It, too, offers impressive power and all kinds of fun exhaust sounds. But as with any muscle car, most purists will stick to the V8, and with the Camaro that won't be a mistake." -- Edmunds (2017)

Handling and Braking

The Chevrolet Camaro is a definite hit in terms of driving enjoyment. It handles extremely well, and there's minimal body lean when cornering, even at higher speeds. The Camaro also rides smoothly, even over rough pavement.

Rear-wheel drive comes standard. Brembo brakes are available to provide even stronger stopping power than the standard brakes. Higher trims offer Magnetic Ride Control, which adjusts the suspension automatically to better handle road imperfections. For even better performance, you can add the 1LE package, which includes suspension and braking upgrades. Note that the 1LE package is not available in every trim.

  • "Touring mode offers a surprisingly relaxed ride, and Active Fuel Management shuts down up to four cylinders for increased fuel economy. … Switching over to Sport mode firms the steering and suspension and allows the transmission to hold gears longer." -- Autotrader
  • "The latest version of the Chevy muscle car is smaller, lighter and delivers handling more in line with what you might expect out of a European sports coupe." -- Kelley Blue Book (2019)
  • "The Camaro's light weight is particularly beneficial toward handling, too, as the Camaro is much more than a straight-line burnout machine. It changes direction quickly, moving swiftly from corner to corner, behaving much more like a sports car than a classic muscle car. If you've got the extra cash, we absolutely recommend the Camaro's adjustable suspension. You'll like how it softens harsh impacts on bumpy roads and increases corner stability, simultaneously making the Camaro a more lively and livable car." -- Edmunds (2017)
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2020 Chevrolet Camaro

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