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HSV locks in MY19 Chevrolet Camaro, top-spec ZL1

Updated Chevy Camaro to be converted to RHD by HSV, as well as fire-breathing ZL1

1 Mar 2019

HOLDEN Special Vehicles (HSV) has announced the MY19 Chevrolet Camaro is set to be converted to right-hand drive at its Melbourne facility from March, and, for the first time, the supercharged ZL1 flagship will also be offered.
The updated Camaro was first revealed overseas in April last year, months before the pre-facelift model arrived in Australia in September, casting uncertainty on how long HSV would keep producing the pre-facelift version.
Pricing for the 2SS has trended upwards slightly, with a six-speed manual now kicking off proceedings at $86,990 plus on-road costs, while opting for the ten-speed automatic increases the asking price by $2200, to $89,190. Comparatively, the auto-only MY18 model asked $85,990 plus on-roads.
Moving up to the ZL1 adds a sizeable premium over the 2SS, with the manual asking $159,990, while the auto costs $162,190.
While the updated Camaro brings refreshed styling, transmissions and equipment, the highlight of HSV’s announcement is the decision to bring the ZL1 Down Under alongside the 2SS.
The more expensive and racetrack-focused of the two variant, the ZL1 features a supercharged 6.2-litre V8, which in US guise pumps out an eye-watering 485kW/868Nm – more power than the swansong Commodore-based HSV GTSR W1 that outputted 474kW/815Nm from its similarly sized engine
HSV marketing general manager Damon Paull said exact local power figures are yet to be confirmed, however, the company is expecting a similar output for Australian examples, around the 480kW/860Nm mark.
The force-fed bent eight features variable valve timing, an external heavy-duty oil-to-air cooler, 11 heat exchangers and a supercharger that is integrated into the intake manifold and fuel-rail systems.
As for the 2SS, its free-breathing 6.2-litre LT1 V8 carries over unchanged with power outputs of 339kW at 6000rpm and 617Nm at 4600rpm.
As mentioned, both the 2SS and ZL1 will score new transmissions in the MY19 update, with the option of a ten-speed automatic with paddle-shifters (which replaces the outgoing eight-speed unit) or, for purists, a six-speed manual with automatic rev-matching.
Mr Paull anticipated around one third of overall sales will be of the six-speed manual, mirroring the take-up in the locally manufactured Zeta platform vehicles, including the Clubsport, Maloo and GTS.
Both versions send power to the rear wheels with the aid of a mechanical limited-slip differential (LSD) on the 2SS and an electric LSD for the ZL1.
Automatic versions of both models feature launch control, as well as line lock and lift-foot gear hold functions.
The ZL1 gains a number of performance features over the 2SS including a sportier suspension tune with magnetic dampers, 20-inch, 10-spoke forged alloy wheels; and six-piston Brembo callipers with 390mm rotors up front, up from the four-pot front and rear stoppers in the 2SS.
Production of the updated range will commence in early March with automatic versions of the 2SS, followed by auto ZL1s in early April. 
Three-pedal examples of the ZL1 and 2SS will begin production in May and June respectively.
As previously reported, the MY19 update ushers in refreshed exterior styling for the 2SS with redesigned LED headlights and daytime running lights, a wider black grille, a new open grille emblem, a central air extractor on the bonnet, quad-look LED tail-lights and fresh 20-inch wheels.
The ZL1 scores a wider and more aggressive front grille, HID headlights, a carbon-fibre composite hood air extractor, black front splitter and side sills, and a rear wing spoiler.
Inside, the biggest change to the MY19 Camaro is the addition of the Chevrolet Infotainment 3 multimedia system projected onto an 8.0-inch touchscreen, as well as a head-up display to go with the existing 8.0-inch digital instrument cluster, nine-speaker Bose audio system, heated and ventilated leather sports seats and flat-bottom sports steering wheel.
The ZL1 adds a suede microfibre-wrapped steering wheel and gear shifter with heating, sport alloy pedals, Recaro bucket front seats and wireless phone charging.
Newly included safety kit includes forward collision alert and a rear camera mirror, which join the existing eight airbags, lane departure warning, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, reversing camera and rear parking sensors.
Mr Paull did not say how much the re-engineering of the MY19 program would cost, or whether it would be more or less than the approximately $10 million spent on developing the MY18 model for right-hand drive.
He did say that the initial reception of the Camaro in Australia left him confident that the investment was worthwhile for HSV.
The right-hand-drive re-engineering process done at Walkinshaw’s factory in Clayton South, Melbourne takes around 100 hours of labour, in a facility that also converts the Chevrolet Silverado and the three-variant Ram truck range on behalf of importer Ateco Automotive.

2019 Chevrolet Camaro pricing*

2SS $86,990
2SS (a) $89,190
ZL1 $159,990
ZL1 (a) $162,190

*Excludes on-road costs

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