GM stops making the Camaro
The Chevrolet Camaro, the dream car of many American teenagers for decades, is going out of production.
General Motors, which sells the beefy muscle car, said Wednesday it would stop making the current generation early next year.
The future of the car raced on NASCAR and other tracks is a bit murky. GM says a new generation may be in the works.
“While we’re not announcing an immediate successor today, rest assured this isn’t the end of Camaro’s story,” Chevrolet vice president Scott Bell said in a statement.
The current sixth-generation Camaro, introduced in 2016, has done well on the track, but sales have been declining in recent years. When the current generation Camaro came out in 2016, Chevrolet sold 72,705. But by the end of 2021, that number had fallen by nearly 70% to 21,893. Last year it recovered a bit to 24,652.
GM said the last of the 2024 model year cars will come off the assembly line in Lansing, Michigan, in January.
Spokesman Trevor Thompkins said he could say no more about a future Camaro. “We’re not saying anything specific right now,” he said.
The company, he said, has an agreement with motor racing authorities that the sixth-generation car can continue to race. GM will have parts available and the Camaro’s bodywork will remain on the track, he said.
NASCAR said that because the Generation 6 Camaro was in production when GM was originally cleared to race, it remains qualified to race in NASCAR Cup and NASCAR Xfinity Series races.
GM will offer a collector’s edition package of the 2024 Camaro RS and SS in North America, and a limited number of high-performance ZL-1 Camaros. The collector’s edition cars will have ties to the first-generation Camaro from the 1960s and its GM code name “Panther,” the company said without giving details.
GM’s move comes as traditional gas-powered muscle cars are being phased out due to strict government regulations on fuel economy, concerns about climate change and an accelerating shift to electric vehicles.
Stellantis will stop making gas versions of the Dodge Challenger and Charger and the Chrysler 300 large sedan at the end of this year. But the company has plans to roll out a battery-powered Charger performance car sometime in 2024.
Electric cars, with direct torque and a low center of gravity, are often faster and better to drive than combustion engine vehicles.
Founded in 2021 by combining Fiat Chrysler and France’s PSA Peugeot, Stellantis announced the latest of its special edition muscle cars earlier this week, the 1,025 horsepower Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170. The company says the car will go from zero to 97 kilometers per hour in 1.66 seconds, making it the fastest production car on the market.
In addition, Ford rolled out a new version of its Mustang sports car in September.
The Camaro was first introduced in 1966, two years after Ford’s wildly popular Mustang.
GM retired the Camaro nameplate in 2002, but revived it as a new 2010 model in hopes of appealing to enthusiasts and younger buyers. The 2010 version was similar to its predecessors, with a long, flat front and side “gills” evoking the original, while still featuring a modern overall design.