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Chevrolet Camaro, 2010: The Weekly Driver Car Review

camaro4More than 40 years after it debuted as a muscle car competitor to the Ford Mustang, the Chevrolet Camaro re-emerged in the spring of 2009 as a 2010 model after a several-year hiatus from the manufacturer’s lineup.

The Camaro is available with V6 or V8 engines and in five trims, all of which attract immediate attention. The rejuvenated, fifth-generation Camaro resembles the Mustang in design. But it simultaneously brings the long-standing coupe a new, modern identity and retains the good and bad traits from its now middle-aged history and reputation.

The Weekly Driver Test Drive

East Coast folks laugh at us when we say “winter weather’s arrived.” In Sacramento, that usually means mid-30s, rain and sometimes fog. But there was snow and temperatures in the high 20s with during my week the 2010 Camaro. It’s nice to have a heavy muscle car during inclement weather. In the instance of the Camaro, that only meant it furthered controlled the road.

camaro

When it was clear and crisp and visibility was good, the Camaro was even more of a star. People gave a “thumb’s up” to the guy who delivered the car. A guy in a grocery story parking lot was all over the car . . . in a good sort of way. The young woman in the coffee-to-go kiosk I frequent might have left her husband for me — as long as she could drive the car. (Just kidding here). The car turned heads everywhere I drove it.

Chevrolet Camaro Interior

The retro squared gauge dials on the instrumental panel and lower console are masculine and perfectly fit the car’s image. At night, the combination red and teal-blue colors are complementary.

Seats aren’t particularly comfortable and the car’s not easy to enter or exit.

Side panels and other interior materials are plastic and iridescent. I like the look.

Headroom is tight for anyone taller than 5-foot-10.

The Camaro coupe may be the longest car I’ve ever driven that has four-person seating but in reality only room for two passengers since there’s little leg room behind the front seats.

camaro1

Chevrolet Camaro Exterior

Look at that styling. From the back, the Camaro now resembles the Ford Mustang and from side views, the car looks sleek. The long hood looks like a handsome roman nose. The angles ad curves all blend into what a muscle car should look like.

Chevrolet Camaro Performance

More than one onlooker said, “How come you didn’t get the V8?” For me, the V6 is plenty. The standard 0-60 mph test is accomplished n 6.0 seconds. The V8 is one second faster. I’ll take the V6 with better gas mileage, 18/29 mpg, respectively, for city and freeway driving.

Steering and handling are tight and the Camaro is arguably among the most responsive cars I’ve driven, which it should be considering its 3.6-liter, 304-horsepower engine.

Likes:

Cool interior lighting, including illuminated (teal) side panel strips.

Retro, four-cluster gauge panel on lower center console.

Efficient, heated seats with keen push-button activation.

Great interior, exterior design.

Dislikes:

Hand brake positioned too far away from driver’s seat.

Big rear window, but limited visibility with several blind spots.

Difficult visibility over the hood, particularly for shorter drivers.

Tight head room when entering/exiting.

Small backseat.

2010 Chevrolet Camaro 2LT Coupe: Facts & Figures

Acceleration: 0-60 mph (6.0 seconds)
Airbags: Dual front and front and rear side-curtain
Antilock brakes: Standard
First aid kit: N/A
Fuel economy (EPA estimates) 18 mpg (city), 29 mpg (highway)
Government Safety Ratings: Front driver/passenger (five stars); Side crash frojt (five stars), rear seat (not rated); Rollover (five stars).
Horsepower: 304
Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price: $26,875.00
Price As tested: $31,825.00
Warranty: Bumper to bumper, 3 years/36,000 miles; Powertrain, 5 years/100,000 miles (transferable), Corrosion, 6 years/100,000 miles; Roadside Assistance, 5 years/100,000 miles; Courtesy Transportation, 5 years/100,000 miles.
Web site: www.chevrolet.com

What Others Say:

“This car should make quite a splash with its affordable price and classic muscle car feel because the 2010 Camaro really is the perfect blend of old and new.”

—- Carseek.com

“OK, we’re going to get straight to the point here. The 2010 Chevrolet Camaro rocks. After years of anticipation, Chevy’s new Camaro not only lives up to the hype but also redefines what a muscle car can be.”

—- Edmunds.com

“In an era when ‘mega-ultra-hyped blockbuster’ often means ‘I wasted my money on that?’ the new Chevy Camaro pushes back against unfulfilled expectations. It delivers. The look is there. The performance is there. The value is there.”

—- Motor Trend

The Weekly Driver’s Final Words:

“I may be among the few males who as a young guy never had an interest in owning a muscle car. What was I thinking? The more I drive the 2010 Camaro, the more I feel young again. It’s in the charge of the road, and it’s nice to appreciate a muscle car — at any age.”

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