The Camaro Z-series nameplate has always been reserved for the most powerful and outrageous Camaro built-in every generation. Hailed as the common man’s supercar, the ZL1 nameplate was introduced in 1969 and the 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 carries the same nameplate with it. Every generation of the Camaro added more power, equipment, and design elements, but also added quite a lot of weight, which made Chevrolet eventually decide to pull the plug on the Camaro in 2006. However, the 2013 variant of the car was a return to form for the Camaro since it boasted of a retro-inspired design and a really good performance to weight ratio. Does the 2020 model still embody the spirit of the original ZL1, or is it time for Chevrolet to get back to the drawing board?
It is the most powerful Camaro ever produced. Powered by a fire-breathing 6.2-liter V8 motor combined with a supercharger, producing 650 horsepower and 650 lb.ft. of torque, this Camaro can reach 60 mph in a staggering 3.5 seconds, without breaking a sweat. The 2020 ZL1 is also one of the very few vehicles to still offer a 6-speed manual transmission as standard, although there’s also a 10-speed automatic available.
The pricing range starts at $ 65,000 sans options and the price keeps going up on the basis of the options selected.
2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Ratings
- Features - 8.5/108.5/10
- Interior - 7.5/107.5/10
- Exterior - 8/108/10
- Fuel Economy - 7.5/107.5/10
- Safety - 7/107/10
- Engine & Performance - 9/109/10
Pros and Cons
The 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 offers quite a lot of performance for its price, although it still does miss out on some essential features. Here are its positives and negatives.
- Value for money
- Potent engine
- Handling dynamics of a supercar
- Abundant standard features
- Not very practical
- Poor visibility
- Harsh ride quality
What’s new in the 2020 Chevrolet Camaro?
The 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 gets a new exterior paint option called Rally Green. Along with more customization options for the interior and exterior, there’s also a new front bumper that replaces the older bumper design on the 2019 model.
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Trims and Features
|TRIM||Offered in only 1 trim with a performance package(optional): ZL1 1LE|
|Features||Launch control, eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat and 6-way power-adjustable front passenger seat with heating and ventilation, 10-speed automatic transmission, dual-zone climate control, memory function for the seats, auto-dimming exterior mirrors, a rearview camera, an 8-inch MyLink touchscreen, a nine-speaker Bose music system, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, satellite radio, Bluetooth, navigation, OnStar connectivity, 4G Wi-Fi connectivity, remote start, leather upholstery, push-button start, performance video recorder, 19-inch alloy wheels, a rear spoiler, upgraded engine and oil cooling, xenon headlights, LED DRLs and taillights, better 6-piston Brembo brakes, a limited-slip differential, keyless entry, a rear camera mirror, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and adjustable driving modes with a Track mode.|
|Optional extras||ZL1 1LE Extreme Track Performance Package: 19-inch forged aluminum wheels with wider tires, special race-oriented suspension dampers, Recaro seats, tinted taillights, a carbon-fiber hood, a deck-lid spoiler, and a fixed rear seat. A sunroof is offered as a separate option. A fabric convertible soft top is available in the convertible.|
|Base MSRP||$ 62,000|
Which 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 we recommend?
The 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 is offered in two body styles which are the coupe and the convertible. While the coupe and the convertible get the same feature list, the convertible does get the added functionality of a folding fabric top. The convertible doesn’t feel as dialed-in in terms of handling since the coupe gets better bracing. We’d suggest opting for the convertible only if you live in a relatively tropical state where the weather is good enough for a top-down experience. But, if you want to take the car to the track, the coupe is the one to go for. If we compare it to 2020 Camaro you may find this beast a lot more powerful with a supercharged engine.
2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Performance
Engine & Transmission
The 2020 Camaro ZL1 gets a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 engine which produces 650 horsepower and 650 lb.ft. of torque. The engine produces all its torque from a very low 1500 RPM, which makes the engine feel powerful at all speeds. It comes in a rear-wheel-drive only drivetrain with two different gearboxes which are the enthusiast-focused six-speed manual transmission and the efficient and fast-shifting ten-speed automatic transmission. The automatic transmission option is faster than the manual in terms of shifts and really helps this engine smoke its competition with ease.
The 2020 model year finishes the 0-60 run in 3.5 seconds and goes on to finish the standing quarter-mile in an astonishing 11.4 seconds, which is nothing short of impressive for a vehicle in this category. There’s also no hesitation from the engine at any RPM, which goes on to prove the eager nature of the engine.
Ride & Handling
The Camaro ZL1 gets a track-focused suspension setup as standard, which makes the ride noticeably harsher than the regular Camaro. While Chevrolet has been able to counteract this change in the quality by equipping the ZL1 with smaller wheels, we believe the suspension should’ve had a larger range of adjustment in order to enhance the overall driving experience. However, the standard 6-piston brakes do a great job of bringing this behemoth to a standstill without much drama. The brakes feel surefooted and provide a linear feel to the braking experience, and there’s no sudden movement of the vehicle while braking.
2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Fuel Economy
Its supercharged V8 is capable of delivering a combined efficiency figure of 16 mpg for the coupe and 15 mpg for the convertible. While these numbers are not as impressive as other similarly sized vehicles, it is good enough for a high-performance sports car of this caliber. Their 19-gallon tanks do help them cover around 300 miles on one tank of gas, which is a decent figure for a long-distance cruiser.
2020 Camaro ZL1 Safety
The NHTSA has awarded the 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 a full five-star rating in virtue of its performance in its frontal and side crash tests. However, it got awarded a dismal ‘Good’ rating as they found the roof in the convertible model to be unsafe. The following safety features are available:
- Rearview camera with parking sensors
- Blind-spot monitoring
- Eight airbags
- Rear cross-traffic alert
- Rear park assist
2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Interior
It’s strictly a two-seater in both coupe and convertible guise since the back seats are extremely cramped and tight for full-sized adults. Opting for the fixed rear seats as a part of the topmost package makes things even worse since the seats cannot be folded out of the way to augment boot space. The dashboard is very simple and functional, but the material quality is still not up to the mark when you consider how much you’re paying for the car. While the dashboard is angled towards the driver to enhance the cockpit-like feel, the button and control placement is not as ergonomic as we would’ve liked.
How are the seats like?
Long-distance cruising surprisingly comfortable in the 2020 Camaro ZL1. The seats at the front offer every kind of luxury feature imaginable, be it power-adjusted seats or the in-built heated and cooled functions which work really well and take nearly no time to make the seats really comfortable. While the seats do get bolsters, they’re not as aggressive as you’d find on other sports cars. However, the optional Recaro seats, which are available as a part of the optional Performance package, lose all the above features in the interest of weight savings and performance. The rear part of the Camaro’s cabin is extremely cramped since there’s barely any space for adults or children to sit comfortably.
The 2020 Camaro ZL1 gets a large 8-inch HD touchscreen as standard on both the coupe and the convertible. This touchscreen is loaded with features and feels premium to use. There’s also no visible touch latency from the screen, even when loading maps in the navigation system. You also get the nine-speaker Bose music system setup as standard. Feature highlights on the infotainment section include:
- A nine-speaker Bose music system
- OnStar emergency communications
- Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
- 4G LTE Wi-Fi connectivity
- Satellite radio
- 2 USB ports
2020 Chevy Camaro ZL1 Interior Pictures
2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Exterior
This year the 2020 Chevy Camaro ZL1 comes with a new paint job called the rally green which looks exceptionally great. Apart from the color job, the car gets a new front bumper which was long expected due to the negative feedback Chevy received from last year’s model.
Design and Dimension
The 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1’s wheelbase measures in at about 110 inches, which is good for a performance-focused car, but doesn’t really translate into more room for the ZL1’s cabin. Visibility around the car suffers thanks to the low roof and high bonnet design, which creates a lot of blind spots around the vehicle. The low roofline does give it the distinct muscle car shape though, which goes a long way in accentuating the Camaro’s retro design. The front is where it has received a new change in the form of an updated bumper since people really didn’t approve of the facelifted bumper on the 2019 car.
The 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 is a really stylish vehicle in the muscle car segment which prioritizes form over function. It shares its front bumper with the regular Camaro but adds a ZL1 badge and an aero kit around the entire car. This includes a large spoiler at the back, flared side skirts, and wheel arches, a hood scoop and a larger diffuser in the rear bumper. There’s also a character line that runs on both sides from the headlights to the taillights, adding some muscle and width to the otherwise plain sides. The diffuser in the rear bumper also helps enhance the car’s looks and differentiate it from the regular Camaro.
2020 Chevy Camaro ZL1 Exterior Pictures
How much will the 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 cost?
Cost of ownership
Cost of ownership is a term we use for calculating all the possible expenses you will bear for the next 5 years after purchasing a car. This includes a lot of factors such as insurance, financing, state fees, maintenance, repair cost, and depreciation. For further information refer to the table provided below:
|CRITERIA||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3||Year 4||Year 5||Total|
|Grand Total||$ 61,911|
The 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 will cost $ 61,911 to own over a period of five years when you consider insurance, financing, state fees, maintenance, repair cost, and depreciation. Reliability is not one of the ZL1’s highlights and this might entail higher maintenance costs at a later stage. We would definitely suggest opting for an extended warranty if it’s offered by the dealership since repair costs might become expensive real fast.
Top 5 US States Pricing
The 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1’s value proposition makes it a popular option in the market. Thus, it might be difficult to find a vehicle selling for below sticker or a significant discount. However, this is the list of the states listing the cheapest price for the car:
- Texas: $ 63,740
- Georgia: $ 64,800
- Pennsylvania: $ 65,900
- Arizona: $ 66,790
- Colorado: $ 67,560
2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Competition
The 2020 ZL1 goes up against performance stalwarts like the Shelby Mustang GT500 and the Dodge Challenger Hellcat. All these cars feature loads of power and torque coupled with comfortable interiors and impressive equipment levels. However, they’ve got their own characteristics, which help them target a particular demographic.
2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT-500 vs. 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
The Shelby Mustang GT500 is the newest and one of the most powerful vehicles in this competition since it gets an unearthly power output of 760 horsepower and 625 lb.ft. of torque. All the power and torque are channeled to the rear wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch unit which is very fast in terms of shifts.
The GT500 also gets a more modern looking dashboard with digital dials and a larger touchscreen. The Mustang’s boot is much larger than the Camaro’s, although the seats at the back are just as cramped. The quality levels of the Mustang’s interior are also significantly better than the Camaro’s. However, the Camaro gets a relatively lower starting price along with a better ride dynamics, which goes a long way in enhancing comfort for the driver.
2020 Dodge Challenger Hellcat vs. 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
The Dodge Challenger Hellcat is the oldest vehicle in this lineup, but still looks pretty fresh, thanks to its timeless design. Practicality is the Dodge’s strong suit since there’s quite a lot of space in its entire cabin. While the front seats offer similar comfort as the other vehicles, the seats at the back offer quite a lot of headroom and legroom, which makes it a comfortable place for adults. The Hellcat was the vehicle that started the power output war among the three manufacturers and its output of 707 horsepower is currently in the middle of the pack. However, the Hellcat outshines the competitors in terms of price, since the base MSRP is less than both the ZL1 and the GT500. However, the Challenger’s safety rating is quite low when compared to the Camaro and the Mustang.
What’s our final verdict?
While the 2020 ZL1 doesn’t have as much of heritage as its competitors, it is still one of the very few vehicles in its segment with an impressive ride and handling dynamics. There’s also quite a lot of technology features you get as standard with the 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, although we would’ve definitely appreciated a set of digital dials, to make it feel more modern. While driving in traffic is made difficult by the massive blind spots, the Camaro still makes for an excellent dual-purpose daily and track driver, since the comfortable seats and suspension make the ride plush and planted over all types of road surfaces. The 2020 variant’s key trump card is its value since the amount of performance and comfort you get for the price is truly impressive.
Anuron Deka is a passionate driver whose love for cars can only be matched by his passion for writing. Hence naturally, after obtaining a Master’s degree in Engineering, he migrated to a job that lets him explore both of his passions.
Apart from cars, he is a hardcore soccer lover and an aspiring chef. His club is Manchester United and has been religiously following the club since David Beckham was a Red Devil. He loves exploring foods from all across the world. What he loves more is cooking them.