No Hybrid, Diesel or AWD Camaro Coming
Although the 6th gen Camaro is based on the same chassis platform as the all-wheel drive Cadillac ATS4 coupe, it looks like we won’t see a Camaro that spins all four wheels from the factory – at least not while the current Camaro boss is in charge. While speaking with AutoGuide, Camaro Chief Engineer Al Oppenheiser made it clear that we aren’t going to see an all-wheel drive Camaro while he is overseeing the program.
Oppenheiser explained that all-wheel drive simply isn’t in the DNA of the Camaro, and his team wants to always preserve the Camaro recipe that has made it so popular for so long. He also added that a hybrid version or a Camaro with a diesel engine aren’t in the cards while he is at the helm, either.
To most people, it seems like little more than common sense that there wouldn’t be an all-wheel drive, hybrid or diesel Camaro, but times they are a-changin’. There was a point in very recent history where Camaro traditionalists insisted that GM wouldn’t make the “mistake” of offering another 4-cylinder Camaro, but we know now that the upcoming Camaro Turbo will likely be the most efficient muscle car available. Of course it doesn’t pack the same muscle as the V6 or V8 Camaro, but not everyone wants 455 horsepower – some people want the muscle car look with the best fuel economy possible. Those people play a big part in lifting fleet fuel economy numbers for an automaker, so in effect, the success of the turbo-4 Camaro will build the future of the V8 Camaro.
With that in mind, it comes as a bit of a surprise that Oppenheiser is so quick to downplay a hybrid Camaro, especially with the recent advancements in high performance hybrid drivetrains like the ones in the Porsche 918 and LaFerrari. As time goes on, we are sure to see efficient muscle cars and while forced induction will help the current engines offer a better mix of MPGs and HPs, it seems likely that we will see some alternative power muscle cars at some point.
However, it seems that we won’t see any hybrid or diesel Camaros while Oppenheiser is overseeing the project and considering the success of the 5th and 6th generation – Mr. Oppenheiser could and should be around for quite some time.