2018 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Review
Edmunds expert review
There's a lot to appreciate about the 2018 Chevrolet Camaro. Sure, the Camaro ZL1 gets all the (deserved) views on YouTube for its gonzo 650-hp V8, but it's not the only Camaro you can buy. If you're just interested in stylish motoring, you can go with the base turbocharged four-cylinder engine or the capable V6. Then there's the available 6.2-liter V8, which has more than enough performance for most driving enthusiasts.
We also like the 2018 Camaro's precise handling, smooth ride on the highway and plenty of standard equipment for the money. If you haven't been around a Camaro in a long time, you'll likely be shocked how refined the latest version is. The Camaro still has its drawbacks, and key rivals are happy to pick up where it leaves off. The Ford Mustang, for example, is a bit more livable and practical when driven on a daily basis. And the Dodge Challenger has them both beat when it comes to retro muscle-car looks and usable backseat space. Overall, we're impressed by the Camaro's combination of power, precision and head-turning looks.
What's new for 2018
Trim levels & features
The 2018 Chevrolet Camaro is available as a four-seat coupe and convertible, with 1LS, 1LT, 2LT, 1SS, 2SS and ZL1 trim levels. The LS and LT models come standard with a turbocharged four-cylinder, and a V6 is also available. The SS has a V8 and the ZL1 has a supercharged V8. The 1s and 2s represent levels of equipment, but there are several optional packages and stand-alone items to help you customize your ideal Camaro.
The LS and LT models come standard with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine (275 hp 295 lb-ft), but they can be equipped with a 3.6-liter V6 (335 hp, 284 lb-ft). The 1LS and 2LT come standard with the six-speed manual transmission while the 1LT has an eight-speed automatic. Like all Camaros, the LS and LT models are rear-wheel-drive.
Standard equipment on the base 1LS includes 18-inch alloy wheels, LED running lights, a limited-slip differential (with the manual transmission), a rearview camera, keyless ignition and entry, power-adjustable front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and adjustable driving modes. Technology equipment includes Bluetooth, OnStar emergency communications, 4G LTE Wi-Fi connectivity, a 7-inch touchscreen (Chevy's MyLink interface), Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone integration, and a six-speaker sound system with satellite radio.
Additional gear on the 1LT includes remote start, the aforementioned automatic transmission and steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters.
The available Technology package adds a nine-speaker Bose audio system and an 8-inch MyLink touchscreen to the 1LS and 1LT.
The 2LT includes the Technology package's contents and adds dual-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. If you add the Convenience and Lighting package to the 2LT, you'll get heated and auto-dimming mirrors, rear parking sensors, driver memory functions, a head-up display, a heated steering wheel, wireless smartphone charging, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert.
The RS package (available on 1LS, 1LT and 2LT) includes 20-inch wheels, xenon headlights, LED taillights, a special grille and a rear decklid spoiler. For the 1LS and 2LT, the 1LE Track Performance package (coupe only) adds the V6, the FE3 sport-tuned suspension from the SS, 20-inch forged alloy wheels, four-piston Brembo brakes, a mechanical limited-slip differential, a short-throw shifter, a track-cooling package, a dual-mode exhaust, special aerodynamic spoilers and a satin black hood. Recaro sport front seats can also be added to the 1LE package.
The 1SS basically gets the 1LT's equipment plus a 6.2-liter V8 (455 hp, 455 lb-ft), a six-speed manual transmission with rev-match downshift (an eight-speed automatic is optional), 20-inch wheels, the four-piston Brembo brakes, the FE3 sport-tuned suspension, a mechanical limited-slip differential, a Track driving mode, a rear spoiler, xenon headlights and upgraded gauges. The 2SS includes the 6.2-liter V8 and all the features from the 2LT trim, along with unique interior accents and the Convenience and Lighting package.
For the 1SS and 2SS, the SS 1LE Track Performance package adds six-piston Brembo brakes, the FE4 suspension with adaptive dampers, an electronically controlled limited-slip differential, different forged alloy wheels, upgraded performance tires, the Recaro sport seats and everything else included with the LT's 1LE package.
Finally, the Camaro ZL1 has a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 (650 hp, 650 lb-ft), a six-speed manual transmission (a 10-speed automatic is optional) and launch control. All of the 2SS and SS 1LE extras, minus the cosmetic differences, are also included. The ZL1 1LE Extreme Track Performance package adds 19-inch forged aluminum wheels with wider tires, special race-oriented suspension dampers, a carbon-fiber hood and rear spoiler, and tinted taillights. With the ZL1 1LE package, a fixed rear seat is also available.
Other available extras include a sunroof, a performance exhaust (all V6- and V8-powered models), a navigation system (2LT, 2SS and ZL1 trims), and a Heavy Duty Cooling and Brake package (1LS, 1LT and 2LT).
NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current Camaro has received only minor revisions. Our findings are applicable to the 2018 model.
Noise & vibration6.5
Ease of use5.5
Getting in/getting out6.0
Audio & navigation
Edmunds expert review process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.