When it comes to performance, the 2010 Camaro delivers in unexpected ways. An advanced 3.6L direct-injected V-6 with variable valve timing is standard on LS and LT models. It offers power and efficiency, with 304 horsepower (227 kW) and EPA-rated 29 mpg in highway driving.
The performance-oriented Camaro SS offers a pair of 6.2L V-8s, including one with Active Fuel Management that helps improve fuel economy by shutting down four cylinders during certain light-load driving conditions. That model delivers 25 mpg in EPA-rated highway fuel economy.
Indeed, the surprising fuel economy of the new Camaro enhances the driving experience. LS and LT models are EPA-rated at 18 mpg in the city and 29 on the highway with an automatic transmission; and 17 city and 29 highway with the manual transmission. Camaro SS with an automatic is rated at 16 city and 25 highway; and 16 city/24 highway with the manual transmission. Notably, none of Camaro's models is subject to federal gas guzzler taxes.
For comparison, the more expensive 2009 Dodge Challenger SRT8 offers comparable horsepower to the Camaro SS with the manual transmission - 425 (317 kW) vs. 426 (318 kW) - and is EPA-rated at 14 city and 22 highway. When automatic-equipped models are compared, the Camaro wins again, with the Challenger SRT8 rated at 13 city and 19 highway.
All of Camaro's engines channel their power to a responsive chassis that features independent front and rear suspensions, large, four-wheel-disc brake systems with standard ABS and GM's StabiliTrak electronic stability control system.
3.6L Direct Injection V-6
Camaro's 3.6L direct injection (DI) V-6 delivers more power through increased efficiency, while maintaining fuel economy and lowering emissions - including a 25-percent drop in cold-start hydrocarbon emissions. Direct injection optimizes fuel delivery to the combustion chamber by introducing fuel closer to the combustion chamber. The fuel injectors are located beneath the intake ports and fuel is injected directly into the cylinder. The result is better efficiency in the combustion process leading to increased fuel efficiency at part and full throttle.
The 3.6L DI engine produces 304 horsepower (227 kW) at 5,900 rpm and 273 lb.-ft. of torque (370 Nm) at 5,200 rpm. Its 60-degree cylinder block and cylinder heads are cast aluminum to help reduce mass. A forged steel crankshaft provides optimal strength in the bottom end. The cylinder heads include four valves per cylinder, with a dual overhead camshaft design incorporating infinitely variable cam phasing.
A full dual exhaust system, with dual catalytic converters, helps reduce back pressure for optimum power. It also helps the engine reach operating temperature quicker to help burn off cold-start emissions. And despite a compression ratio of 11.3:1, the 3.6L DI engine is designed to run on regular gas.
Camaro SS's 6.2L Powertrains
Two 6.2L V-8 engines are offered in the Camaro SS, including the new L99 on automatic-equipped vehicles and the LS3 on manual-equipped models. Both engines are derived from the LS3 that debuted on the 2008 Corvette.
The 90-degree V-8 includes an aluminum block (with cast iron cylinder liners) and aluminum cylinder heads. The bottom end of the engine includes a new structural cast aluminum oil pan, with an oil capacity of 8.9 quarts (8.5 liters), while the two-valve cylinder head design is based on race-proven airflow dynamics. The intake valves measure 2.16 inches (55 mm) and exhaust valves are 1.60 inches (40.5 mm) in diameter.
The 6.2L engines also use a roller lifter-style camshaft with 5-percent greater intake-side valve lift than the Corvette's LS3. It manages airflow that is channeled through an acoustically tuned intake manifold with a composite design that reduces runner-to-runner variation. The throttle bore diameter is 90 mm.
Horsepower for the L99 is 400 (298 kW) at 5,900 rpm and torque is 410 lb.-ft. (556 Nm) at 4,300 rpm. The LS3 develops 426 horsepower (318 kW) at 5,900 rpm and 420 lb.-ft. (569 Nm) at 4,600 rpm (all numbers are SAE certified). Output on the L99 is lower than the LS3 because of a slighter lower compression ratio (10.4:1 vs. 10.7:1) and design features of the Active Fuel Management System. The L99 is paired exclusively with an automatic transmission.
As with the 3.6L models, the SS models employ a full dual exhaust system, with two catalytic converters to reduce back pressure.
All Camaro models can be equipped with either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission. The availability of a six-speed automatic transmission is a first for Camaro.
Standard with the 3.6L engine is the Aisin AY6 six-speed manual. It features lower shift effort and shorter throws for easier shifting and "fun-to-drive" characteristics. A hydraulic clutch and self-adjusting mechanism eliminates the need for adjustments throughout the lifespan of the transmission.
The Hydra-Matic 6L50 six-speed automatic is optional with 3.6L-equipped models. It has an aggressive 4.07:1 first gear ratio that delivers strong launches, but also provides tall overdrive ratios that decrease engine rpm and provide better fuel efficiency. The 6L50 also includes driver shift control, with the driver taking control via paddle shifts located on the steering wheel after selecting the "M" mode on the console-mounted shifter.
Performance Algorithm Shifting (PAS) is included with the 6L50. It lets the electronic transmission controller override the automatic gear selection during high lateral acceleration maneuvers.
On SS models, the new Tremec TR 6060 six-speed manual is paired with the LS3. It is designed to handle the high torque characteristics of the engine, while providing shorter throws, smoother gear synchronization and greater overall shift feel with little or no vibration. Its specs include a solid 290 mm flywheel and single-plate clutch. The final drive ratio for LS3 vehicles is 3.45:1.
The highest-capacity automatic ever in a GM passenger car, the Hydra-Matic 6L80 six-speed automatic, is matched with the L99 engine. Like the 6L50 transmission, it features driver shift control and PAS. The final drive ratio on all automatic-equipped Camaro models is 3.27:1.