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Camaro Z/28 Drive


Frisky Dingo

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So another member suggested I post some of the many reviews I did over at MT Forums here. Here's the first of them, with more to come-

 

 

 

My dealer got a 2014 Z in with 1,300 miles. Unfortunately, I didn't get to do my usual spirited run for several obvious reasons, but I did take a quick little spin in it.

It's really amazing the transformation from the standard car. It's buy far the biggest difference I've ever experienced between a base model and a higher variant. It doesn't even feel like the same car. It seems smaller, and lighter than the regular SS, and much smaller and lighter than it is. It's a worn out cliche, but with it's wide stance and huge meats, it truly does hug the road.

The impact those tires made on the driving dynamics are quite unlike any other car, and hard to explain. The steering immediacy was really eye-opening. You can just tell there's a level of grip that most cars and driver's aren't even aware exists, let alone experienced.

Power was kind of a mixed bag. On the one hand, it's really quick. On the other, it didn't really feel much stronger than my car. The sound and feel of the LS7 ripping through it's powerband is very much something to behold, however. It is a truly great engine- torquey, free-revving, linear, and sonorous. The brakes, what I used of them, felt very strong.

Truth is, the relatively worn Pirellis and 40 degree temps meant I couldn't exploit much of the car's performance potential, but that that I did was enough to see how enjoyable the car is, and how great of a job GM did with it.

 

 

And Pt 2-

 

I drove the car again yesterday for about 30 mins on some back roads and I just can't say enough about how enjoyable this car is to drive.

The temps were up some- upper-40's, so I was able to push a little harder than before. And even though I still didn't come close to pushing it to it's potential- the tires are pretty worn, as I said earlier, and I value my job- I got a little taste of just how this car performs and feels.

The steering is really just sublime. I would have a very difficult time trying to find anything negative about the steering. The weight is perfect. It's super direct and quick. The worst I could say is the feel could be a little better. It's not bad by any means, but it's not the best I've experienced either. 

The car takes a set through turns that even much smaller and lighter cars couldn't hope to match. It really is nuts how small and manageable the car feels when you're pushing it. It's quite easy to feel comfortable and build confidence in. The brakes are just immense. They're strong enough that pretty much every braking point is far after where you actually start applying them.

And, of course, the sound and feel of that LS7 is just fantastic. I took it through a parking garage nearby and scared a bunch of people. It was great. I also did a WOT blast through 1st gear past a truckful of cheering high-school aged kids. It was great.

The car is just a riot. If anyone here has driven a Boss, this is the best way I can describe it- take everything the Boss does- steer, turn, ride, stop, accelerate- and just turn it up a notch-and-a-half. The few areas the Boss is better is the shifter/clutch department, and outward visibility. Balance is very similar, as is ride quality and steering feel. But the Z28 grips much harder, brakes much harder, and is much more composed. The power feels a little stronger, but not by as much as you'd think.

I really encourage any of you to drive one if you get the opportunity, even if you have to beg. It's probably the most fun to drive car I've ever been in.   

 

Edited by Frisky Dingo
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I've read it before, and now I've read it again. Still a solid in-depth review. It's refreshing to read reviews from a normal car enthusiast because often journalists get their head too far up their own ass with hyperbole to enjoy the car.

 

I'm totally envious of your time in the Z/28.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just like when it won the MT "Best drivers car" award, this car has shocked a lot of people. It is a pure drivers car in a way that no other Camaro before could ever possibly dream of matching. For people who complain about the high price of this car, I say drive one first. I have seen not one review that said that this car was NOT worth the price admission. If Chevy carries this formula over into the new Camaro, this is going to be an instant hit.

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It's good to read cool stuff like this again. After seeing what GM was able to do with this platform I'd be shocked if the Alpha is anything less that class-leading right out of the box. And yes, I'm still holding out hope for some type of 7.0L smallblock going under the hood at some point.

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I've read it before, and now I've read it again. Still a solid in-depth review. It's refreshing to read reviews from a normal car enthusiast because often journalists get their head too far up their own ass with hyperbole to enjoy the car.

 

I'm totally envious of your time in the Z/28.

Same exact thoughts here.

 

Good review, Jealous. 8)

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