Chevrolet Camaro 2022 review

The Camaro is an American muscle car that’s been around since 1966

£24,051
Average price
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1
Out of 5

Pros

  • Big V8 motor
  • Cool styling
  • Good value

Cons

  • Very expensive to run
  • Only available in left-hand-drive
  • Poor gearbox
  • MPG

    0 - 0

  • CO2

    0 - 0 g/km

Model review

If you hear the words ‘muscle car’, the first thing that will come to mind is likely the Ford Mustang – a model that’s dominated in this area for some time. 

But it’s certainly not the only model to dominate this market, as Chevrolet (which is lesser-known here in the UK) also has the Camaro. It’s a model that’s been on sale since 1966 and was designed to compete with the Mustang from launch. Since then, more than five million Camaros have been produced. 

Three additional generations would follow, but Chevrolet would discontinue it in 2002 due to slowing sales for sports cars. But that wasn’t the end of the Camaro as it would make a dramatic return in 2006 in concept form, closely previewing a production car that arrived in 2009. 

Latest model

The arrival of the fifth-generation Camaro was actually quite significant, namely as it was the first time that Chevrolet had officially imported the model to the UK, albeit versions remained left-hand-drive. Customers also had to wait until 2012 to get their cars. 

Coming with a manufacturer warranty and able to take full advantage of Chevrolet’s aftersales – it’s worth noting that at the time the brand sold a range of new cars here in Britain – the Camaro was underpinned by a huge 6.2-litre V8 engine. Priced from £34,995 when new, it was attractively priced, and also came with the option of a manual and automatic gearbox. Both coupe and convertible bodystyles were offered too. 

For 2014 the Camaro was given a mid-life facelift, offering a wider, lower grille and narrower upper grille, along with greater interior technology thanks to a standard-fit seven-inch touchscreen. Though Chevrolet would largely withdraw from the UK market in 2015, a dealership in Surrey would continue to officially import the Camaro in August 2019, when newly imposed emissions regulations would mean it had to be axed. 

Value for money

Ever since it was first introduced in the UK, the Camaro has always represented solid value for money, with its sub-£35,000 starting price when new making it seem great value compared to similarly powerful sports cars from elsewhere in the world. All versions also came with loads of equipment, such as 20-inch alloy wheels, leather seats and even a head-up display. 

If you’re looking at used Camaro examples, prices start from just £5,000 for previous generation examples, but you’ll have to pay double for a high-mileage version of the latest car we’re talking about here. Spend around £20,000 for a particularly clean, low-mileage example. 

Looks and image

The Chevrolet Camaro has an image you’ll either love or hate. If you like your upmarket German or British sports cars, the more brash, raw feel of this muscle car will likely put you off. But its chunky and brutish design has a real charm about it, if you like a slice of Americana. It’s a pretty sight on the UK’s roads too, which also adds to the Camaro’s appeal. 

Head inside and the Camaro has chunky looks, with big square gauges and switches dominating the interior. It doesn’t have the plushest or sportiest of cabins, but the big leather seats and simplistic switchgear make it easy to get comfortable and adjusted to. The quality is certainly a notch off its competitors, though, and if you want additional technology, choose the facelifted 2014 car, which brings a touchscreen. 

Living up to the muscle car image, the Camaro is better on a straight stretch of road than on twisty tarmac, with its bulk making itself well known through the corners, and lack of feel meaning you’re unlikely to really push it down a back road. Its V8 engine is a delight, though, and provides a seamless amount of power to get you up to speed. Neither manual or automatic gearbox are particularly exemplary, but the manual has a heavy clutch and seems a lot of effort to drive. With all Camaros coming in left-hand-drive, it means it’s not ideal on UK roads, either. 

Space and practicality

Given the Camaro’s vast proportions, it’s actually not particularly roomy inside. While those in the front likely won’t be moaning when it comes to space, the rear is particularly tight, both for legroom and headroom. Taller passengers certainly won’t want to spend too much time there. 

The Coupe’s 320-litre boot is a decent size, though, and offers room for a couple of suitcases, though the Convertible is unsurprisingly less practical.

Engines

While all of the latest Camaro models use a 6.2-litre V8 engine, there is a difference between versions with a manual or automatic transmission. 

Starting with the manual, this uses a 426bhp unit with 569Nm of torque, translating to a 0-60mph time of five seconds. As for the automatic, this uses a slightly less powerful engine producing 399bhp and 556Nm of torque, and taking 5.2 seconds to reach 0-60mph. Both engines can hit a claimed top speed of 155mph. 

Running costs

If you’re getting a Camaro, there’s one thing we should get out of the way – it will cost you a fortune to run. Averaging just 20mpg, you’ll be spending a lot of time at the pumps if you intend to do any decent miles in it, while sky-high 329g/km CO2 emissions place the Camaro in a high tax bracket too. 

Things to look out for

Though the Camaro might have sold in tiny numbers here in the UK, over in the US it’s popular, with this Chevrolet having a very solid reputation when it comes to reliability. 

You should make sure it’s been well maintained, as that V8 engine doesn’t like being neglected, but providing it’s been serviced regularly and had parts replaced when needed, there shouldn’t be any significant worries. 

Rivals

The Camaro’s key muscle car rival is the Ford Mustang, which it’s important to note was officially sold in right-hand-drive form from 2015. In terms of more European sports cars, the Jaguar F-Type is a good alternative, as are the Audi TT RS, BMW M2 and Porsche Cayman. All of these will be noticeably more expensive to buy, though. 

Depreciation

Even when new the Camaro was competitively priced next to its competitors, and that has remained true on the used market. Here in the UK, there’s only limited demand for a muscle car like this, while the fact it’s only offered in left-hand-drive will put off some buyers too.

Trims explained

In the UK, all officially imported Camaro models came in a single high-spec trim. Equipment highlights are as follows.

Camaro –

All Camaro versions in the UK get plenty of equipment, including 20-inch polished alloy wheels, Brembo performance brakes, full leather upholstery and a six-way adjustable driver’s seat. They also pack a nine-speaker Boston Acoustics sound system, head-up display, Bluetooth and rear parking sensors.

From £12,000

Summary

  1. Muscle car that’s been around since 1966…
  2. Though was only officially sold in the UK from 2012
  3. Brutish styling
  4. Great V8 engine
  5. Only sold in left-hand-drive
  6. Generous equipment
  7. Affordable used buy
  8. Very expensive to run
  9. Interior quality not as plush as European rivals
  10. An appealing sports car for those wanting something a bit different
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