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GM rolls out Chevrolet Camaro concept

Muscular-looking car modeled after 1969 classic.

January 9, 2006; Posted: 3:51 p.m. EST (2051 GMT)


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DETROIT ( - People thought American two-door performance cars were dead. The Chevrolet Camaro and the Pontiac Firebird went out of production in 2003. That left just the Mustang hanging on.

It's not hanging on anymore. With its 2005 redesign, the Mustang has taken off, selling like it did in 1964 when it was first introduced.

Now the ghosts are revving their engines. Yesterday, the Dodge Challenger, in modern concept-car form, was unveiled at the Detroit Auto Show. Today, it was the Camaro.

Ever since the new Mustang was released, General Motors executives have been saying they wanted to compete. So far, these are only concepts but each could be produced with a few changes.

The Camaro concept rolled out onto the show floor at the North American International Auto Show, better known as the Detroit Auto Show, this morning.

Like the Dodge Challenger concept, which was revealed on Sunday, the Camaro follows the Mustang's lead in taking its design cues straight from the classics of the late 1960s and early '70s.

"The fact that the Camaro has been out of production for a number of years made it particularly important that the Camaro Concept honors the Camaro heritage in the right way," said Bob Boniface, director of GM's Warren Advanced Design Studio,

The 2006 concept was particularly inspired by the 1969 version of the Camaro.

"The overall proportions, long hood and powerful fender forms say, 'This is a front-engine, rear-wheel drive performance vehicle,' " said Tom Peters, GM's design director for rear-wheel drive performance cars.

The concept car has a prominent front grille and hood bulge. Large wheels (the front wheels are 21 inches in diameter and the back wheels are 22 inches), exposed high-performance brakes, and prominent fender shapes add to the "muscle car" theme.

Under the hood, the concept Camaro shares an aluminum 6.0-liter engine with the Chevrolet Corvette C6 race car.


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