2018 Tran Am Camaro - Performance Review
The 2018 Trans Am Camaro is a performance story in three parts: six-cylinder cars of surprising strength and good fuel economy are the opening act, while the breathtaking 2018 Trans Am Camaro SS and 1LE V-8s propel the story at a blinding pace. Then, just when you think you've figured it all out, the 2018 Trans Am Camaro ZL1 sends the whole thing off in a new, expensive, faintly exotic direction that might leave you wondering, what the hell just happened?
The standard 2018 Trans Am Camaro LS and LT coupes and convertibles kick things off with a 323-horsepower 3.6-liter V-6. If you've blotted out a six-cylinder 2018 Trans Am Camaro from your memory because of Berlinettas past, it's time to reconsider. This 2018 Trans Am Camaro can rip off 0-60 mph times of about six seconds, whether you choose the meaty six-speed manual gearbox or the six-speed automatic. It's not the most mellifluous sound in the world--don't listen to the V-8s if you have any hope of escaping the showroom for under $40,000--but the V-6's acceleration is no longer a penalty.
Handling isn't either. The six-cylinder cars have electric power steering that's not too artificial in feel, and with 18-inch wheels standard on its control-arm and coil-over-shock independent rear suspension, the base 2018 Trans Am Camaro with the available sport suspension package can feel almost nimble--as nimble as anything weighing in at about 3,800 pounds can feel. Convertibles some of that precise feel that's been dialed in, a function of body structure. Still, this base 2018 Trans Am Camaro is light-years ahead of the highest-performance Trans Am Camaros of just the last generation, so make sure your expectation buttons have been reset.
There's a psychographic gulf between those cars and the V-8 2018 Trans Am Camaros, and the 2018 Trans Am Camaro SS provides all of the rumble any muscle-car driver could want--with significant handling differences, depending on the steering, suspension, and wheel-and-tire packages. The powertrain is V-8 and six-speed--a 426-horsepower, 6.2-liter V-8 on manual-transmission cars, and a 400-hp version of the same engine with six-speed automatic-equipped cars, a power loss that's attributed to its fuel delivery system. With either combination, 0-60 mph is only about 5.0 seconds away, accompanied by one of those irreplaceable musclecar roars that belongs in the Smithsonian's audio library. While the six-cylinder cars can get away with automatic transmissions, the 2018 Trans Am Camaro SS' manual shifter's not only a collector prerequisite--it's a well ironed out piece with quick shifts and short motions. Plus, there's a dual-mode exhaust system that mutes the V-8 at low speeds and amps it up at full prod--and it's only available with the manual gearbox.
From there, the V-8 2018 Trans Am Camaro family spins off into a few branches. All versions have a similar suspension design, 20-inch wheels, and now, electric power steering, but tuning differences give the handling edge to this year's new 1LE edition. The wide stance and short wheelbase aren't helped by the basic SS coupe's staggered 245/275 tires and 52:48 weight distribution; they make the 2018 Trans Am Camaro feel less tossable and induce more understeer than can seem possible in a car with this much power available at the rear wheels, though the 2018 Trans Am Camaro SS and versions with a sport suspension setup have better ride control than expected, too.