Chevrolet has unveiled the 2018 Camaro ZL1 race car that the manufacturer will field in the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. The Camaro ZL1 will replace the current SS model that has been used since NASCAR Cup cars moved to the Gen-6 design specification in 2013.
It was announced at the start of the year that Chevrolet would no longer field the SS in the NASCAR Cup Series, a move in line with the discontinuation of the Chevrolet SS road car; which suffered from poor sales throughout its run. From its launch in October 2013 to July this year, only 11,388 were sold. By comparison, Ford has sold nearly one million production versions of their Fusion that is used in the Cup series since January 2014.
The Camaro, however, has long been a favourite of consumers across the world. There’s also a long history of the Camaro in motorsports. The Camaro SS is also the car that Chevrolet field in the NASCAR XFINITY Series.
“Chevrolet, Camaro and ZL1 are all synonymous with winning, both on and off the track,” said Mark Reuss. “We are thrilled to run Camaro in the NASCAR Cup Series next year, with the time-honored and track-tested ZL1 badge, and we’re just as excited for our drivers, teams, fans and customers.”
The car was unveiled at Chevrolet’s corporate headquarters in Detriot, with reigning NASCAR Cup series champion Jimmie Johnson on hand at the reveal alongside Chevrolet’s executive vice president of GM Global Product Development, Reuss. Various teams that run with Chevrolet in the Cup series were also in attendance, including representatives from Hendrick Motorsports, Chip Ganassi Racing, Richard Childress Racing, JTG Daugherty Racing, Germain Racing, and Leavine Family Racing.
“The new Camaro ZL1 is a great-looking race car with a lot of heritage behind it, which will make it a big hit with fans,” said Johnson, who gave Chevrolet twenty-three of their seventy race victories with the SS, “And as someone who enjoyed the ZL1 on the street, I’m really looking forward to getting this new race car on the track.”
The Camaro ZL1 NASCAR Cup car bears a significant resemblance to its production counterpart – something that some fans believe has been missing in some of the current cars in the Cup series. Chevrolet tried to preserve the image of the Camaro Zl1 whilst designing the Cup series car, but not at the cost of aerodynamic efficiency.
The Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Cup car will make its race debut during the 2018 Daytona Speedweeks in February. However, the car will most definitely make its first on-track appearances in various test sessions later this year.