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- Highs Excellent V-6 and V-8 engines, track-focused 1LE package delivers race-car capability, intuitive infotainment.
- Lows Torturous back seat, terrible outward visibility, not as visually stunning as the Mustang.
- Verdict An incredible performance value that includes a version for everyone.
Not every Chevy Camaro packs a muscular V-8 and a manual transmission, which makes it accessible and desirable to most driving enthusiasts. Available as a sporty coupe and sun-loving convertible, the 2020 Camaro has unique styling that's ripe for customization. While its cabin feels cramped and its roof ruins outward visibility, the pony car is endlessly enjoyable to drive. A dutiful four-cylinder and spunky V-6 are the most affordable engines, but Chevy's brilliant 6.2-liter V-8 sounds great and goes like stink. An incredible performance package—called 1LE—is available on all coupes and transforms them into versatile track machines. Still, the 2020 Camaro continues the nameplate's tradition of offering something for everyone.
What's New for 2020?
One year after the Camaro received a mid-cycle refresh, Chevy has again updated the front-end styling of the 2020 Camaro SS and all-new LT1 model. The change repositions the company's bowtie emblem in the top grille and paints the bar between both grilles the same color as the body. The newly added Camaro LT1 provides the most affordable way to get a V-8, with a starting price that's $3000 less than an SS model. The V-6 model now pairs with a 10-speed automatic transmission that replaces the old 8-speed. The lineup also adds a new Rally Green paint color and more personalization options. The 2020 Camaro is set to go on sale early this fall.
Pricing and Which One to Buy
The new LT1 model simply makes V-8 power more accessible. Still, we'd recommend a Camaro SS coupe with the standard six-speed manual transmission. Its standard 455-hp V-8 is close to perfection (unless fuel economy is a priority) and the manual gearbox is user-friendly and ultimately engaging. Sure, this combo is available on the LT1 model for less, but it requires the SS to have the phenomenal 1LE performance package. It costs another $7000, but it's well worth the money. Its copious track-ready equipment includes adaptive dampers, upgraded Brembo front brakes, electronic limited-slip diff, wider and stickier tires, and distinct interior and exterior enhancement. Best of all, the 1LE package doesn't compromise the Camaro's ride quality and livability.
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Engines, Transmission, and Performance
Likes: V-6 and V-8 each have distinct character and sound, incredible performance value, transformative 1LE package.
Dislikes: Four-cylinder is overshadowed by the other engines.
The base 275-hp four-cylinder isn't slow—we tested a manual model that made it to 60 mph in an earnest 5.1 seconds. But uneven throttle responses and unpleasant, unsporting sounds accompanied its dull demeanor. On the other hand, upgrading to the 335-hp naturally aspirated V-6 completely changes the car's character. The gutsy V-6 has its own distinctly searing soundtrack and redeems generations of ho-hum six-cylinders. The Camaro LT1 and SS feature Chevy's iconic small-block V-8, with 455 horsepower and 455 lb-ft of torque. Its linear power delivery and chest-compressing acceleration are enhanced by the optional dual-mode exhaust, which erupts with a sharp bark at startup and thunderous sounds during wide-open-throttle blasts. The standard six-speed manual transmission maintains the enthusiast spirit, and the 10-speed automatic is now available with the V-6.
Its astonishing chassis provides a car-and-driver connection (see what we did there?) that's unparalleled among pony cars. It's taut on the track yet relaxed on regular roads. Paired with the 1LE , the coupes transcend their class—competing with cars costing much, much more. The Camaro's solid structure engenders precise handling and a quality feel. Its well-balanced ride is firm enough to be agile on curvy roads yet still compliant on rough surfaces. The electrically assisted power-steering system has reasonable effort and accurate responses. The Camaro completes the performance trifecta with excellent brakes. The brake pedal consistently provides progressive and assuring responses. The 1LE models get even more powerful, track-ready Brembo brakes.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
The Chevy's four-cylinder engine has the highest EPA estimates, while the V-6 and V-8 versions performed well in our real-world testing. We've tested each of the Camaro's three available engines—paired with the six-speed manual—and they were all within 1 mpg (plus or minus) of their EPA highway estimates.
Interior, Infotainment, and Cargo
Likes: Optional Recaro front seats are supportive without being restrictive, effortless touchscreen operation.
Dislikes: Notoriously bad outward visibility, almost unusable back seat, comically small trunk opening.
The Camaro interior is an improvement versus the previous generation, with better materials and a more modern look. Its comfortable front seats and straightforward layout are high points, but its torturously small back seat and compromised visibility inhibit livability. An optional head-up display is useful and not offered on the Dodge Challenger or Mustang. The Camaro also can be equipped with customizable ambient interior lighting, which adds a cool appearance.
Every Camaro has a user-friendly touchscreen that supports Chevy's latest infotainment software—called Infotainment 3. While the large touchscreen fills the space better, the plastic bezel looks chintzy, and its downward angle is awkward. Otherwise, its mix of controls and organized menus is appreciated. Chevy's setup has everything standard—intuitive controls, attractive menus, responsive feedback, a Wi-Fi hotspot, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support.
The Camaro outshines its rivals on the track and in the fun-to-drive department but is outmatched in terms of cargo space and storage. It held the least amount of carry-on luggage, and it has even less interior storage than its already stingy rivals.
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
Overall Safety Rating (NHTSA)
The 2020 Camaro earned a five-star crash-test rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and the 2019 model earned average scores from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Still, it has fewer driver assists than either of its pony-car rivals. Thankfully, the Chevy can be equipped with blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert to aid with its atrocious rear visibility. Key safety features include:
- Available blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert
- Available forward-collision warning
- Available rear parking sensors
Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
The Camaro has a warranty that compares favorably with the Mustang and Challenger. The Chevy also provides the first maintenance service free of charge.
- Limited warranty covers 3 years or 36,000 miles
- Powertrain warranty covers 5 years or 60,000 miles
- Complimentary maintenance is covered for the first visit