These Are General Motors' Plans for the 2016 Chevy Camaro

The current Chevrolet Camaro has out-sold Ford's Mustang. GM hopes to keep it that way with the next-generation car. Photo credit: General Motors

Since it was revived in 2009, the Chevrolet Camaro has been a solid hit for General Motors  (NYSE: GM  ) . The Camaro's combination of style and performance has proved to be an enduring success -- and the current model, updated with more fuel-efficent engines and a sophisticated suspension, has continued that success.

In fact, the Camaro has recently out-sold its ancient arch-rival, Ford's  (NYSE: F  ) Mustang. But an all-new Mustang will arrive at Ford dealers later this year. How will GM respond?

Ford's current Mustang is on the left, and the all-new 2015 model is on the right. Photo by the author.

GM hasn't said anything officially, but rumors are starting to emerge. As you can see in the photo above, Ford took an evolutionary approach with their new Mustang. Reports are suggesting that GM is planning to take a similar approach with the next Camaro. As Fool contributor John Rosevear explains in this video, the new Camaro will be on a completely different platform -- but it's expected to be quite similar to the current model.

A transcript of the video is below.

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John Rosevear: Hey Fools, it's John Rosevear. We're starting to get some hints about the upcoming all-new 2016 Chevy Camaro.

We've known for a while that the next-generation Camaro will be built on GM's Alpha platform, that's an advanced rear wheel drive platform that underpins the Cadillac ATS and CTS sedans. It's a great platform, the new CTS is Motor Trend's Car of the Year in part because its handling is outstanding and because it's lighter in weight than a lot of its rivals. Both of those things would be good news for the Camaro.

We also know that the next Camaro will be built at GM's Lansing Grand River factory, which is where the CTS and ATS are built, and we think it'll probably debut at next year's North American International Auto Show, in Detroit next January, and it'll arrive at Chevy dealers probably in the fall of 2015.

We don't know what it'll look like, but Edmunds.com had a report this week where they said they have learned that it'll look quite a bit like the current car. Just as the all-new 2015 Ford Mustang looks different from the current car but looks a lot like it, GM is going to make the same kind of move with the Camaro. Edmunds quoted a source who has seen the new Camaro, who said "It looks like a worked-over current-model Camaro. It is on a different platform, so that is a significant difference, but when they modified it to be on a different platform, the styling did not change that much."

So we should probably explain what a platform is, it's not actually a chassis or a physical thing, it's a set of measurements and engineering decisions that allow different vehicles to be built with common parts on the same assembly line. It's things like where the dashboard goes and the angle of the windshield, how big the engine bay is, that kind of thing. It doesn't mean that the new Camaro will look like a Cadillac. Think about this: The Ford Focus and the Ford Escape are on the same platform.

What the Camaro gets from being on this platform is rear wheel drive, room for V6 and V8 engines, automatic and manual transmissions, and the benefit of a lot of the engineering development and under-the-skin parts like gas tanks and brackets and so forth that can be shared with the Cadillacs. I expect the new Camaro to be standard with a V6, optional V8, just like now, and maybe they'll follow Ford's lead with the Mustang and offer a turbo four cylinder, the 2.0 liter turbo four cylinder that they're using in the ATS Coupe would be a nice choice in a Camaro, 295 foot pounds of torque.

So probably quite a bit lighter, more sophisticated suspension, probably faster, probably more fuel efficient, but not a radical change for the next Camaro, just making it better. We look forward to seeing it. Thanks for watching, and Fool on.


Read/Post Comments (35) | Recommend This Article (12)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 11:13 AM, kayakers3 wrote:

    GM better concentrate on their biggest moneymaker: trucks. They are woefully behind Dodge and Ford. The diesel is way underpowered and the gas engines aren't a winner either. I have bought GM for over 50 years, however I am waiting for the 2015 Ford to choose Dodge or Ford for my next tow vehicle. Mary Barra- you gotta do something and fast.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 11:40 AM, muhahaha wrote:

    GM better focus on all those ignition switch lawsuits or they might be needing another bailout!!

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 12:36 PM, lone wrote:

    it still looks ugly. i'll take a mustang any day.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 12:36 PM, one4dwin wrote:

    As usual,GM following Ford's footsteps and then claiming they came up with the idea.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 12:58 PM, dmvrba wrote:

    as a loyal GM owner, i think they need to go back to the camaro roots of the early 70's and get some design ideas from that car, now that would be the nail in the coffin for the mustang

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 1:08 PM, helspont wrote:

    I've driven both the newer mustang and newer camaro. Ill have to say the mustang trumps the camaro in comfortability, and performance. The camaro is so cramped inside and a bit more stiff driving. However aesthetically I dont like either one. I think they are both fairly ugly. I prefer the 90's models of both. Maybe if one of them totally gets off this stupid retro look I might buy one. Side by side right now though you can barely tell the camaro and stang apart look at the photo.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 1:24 PM, ac1065001 wrote:

    Bot UAW built....looks good, falls apart fast.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 1:30 PM, tangshung wrote:

    Their all ugly. If a car company would come out with the original body with a up to date drive train. They couldn't build them fast enough. I'm talking bring back the 1968 ss original body with crome bumpers and all.And put the new motors and trans. in them. All the street rod builder's do this and sell them.So why not build a factory one. If ford would do the 1970 Boss that way and Plymouth would do a 1970 Cuda with a new Hemi in it,that way they would all sell cars and then Street Rod builders would quit changing the original ones..

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 1:58 PM, btc909 wrote:

    De-ugly the back end? Make it so you can SEE out of a Camaro?

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 2:08 PM, bcweir wrote:

    @ Kayaker - these are NOT trucks. The people who buy these cars generally aren't looking for a tow vehicle or anything in that style. If they were, they'd be buying a TRUCK, not a Camaro. Your first mistake is assuming every GM buyer wants a vehicle with a bed and a tailgate.

    Secondly, this isn't an article about trucks. It's an article about the Camaro. Did you make a wrong turn somewhere?

    @ Allend406 - And you think the Camaro is attractive? Especially the warmed over 2014 model? Either model looks as if GM bought a ton of grey plastic at a volume discount. Hasn't GM ever heard of PAINT?

    @ dmvrba - Why go back to the 70's for inspiration? Those cars are generally considered to be GM's salad-days: Smog choked, low hp, big-ugly-bumper cars that left quite a bit to be desired in the styling department as well. While the styling recovered with the 3rd gen F-car (1982 model), most fans are clamoring to look back to the 1967 to 1969 Camaros for styling inspiration.

    @ helspont - what do you think of the 2014 Camaro? That car's front and rear revisions look NOTHING like either the 1st gen car on which it was based, or even the 2010 model that drew such inspiration. GM tried the retro look and IMHO (and others as well) they BOTCHED it. I have to say that Ford was much more successful with the retro style with the 2005 - 2009 Mustang than GM was with the 2010 - 2013 model Camaro.

    ac1065001 - The Camaro is built in St. Therese, in Canada, by UAW CANADA.

    tangshung - we already have plenty of first gen Camaros out there. They're as close as Ebay or Craigslist if you want one. GM isn't bringing the first gen back. Those cars wouldn't meet modern safety or emissions standards, and it would be a lot harder fit all the techno doo-dads that while you yourself might have little use for, would be necessary to keep the car competitive with other models that do. This isn't 1967 anymore. Ford did do a BOSS 302 as much as modern auto design requirements would let them. The Cleveland motor isn't coming back. As for the Cuda - no need for it. Chrysler has BOTH the Challenger (2 door rear drive) and the Charger (4 door rear drive). What in the world does Chrysler need a redundant product for?

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 2:23 PM, macs3333 wrote:

    AWD needed for Camaro. Snow or rain ....pray. SKIP

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 2:35 PM, ChrisEL wrote:

    All of the cars in that category Camaro , Charger and Mustang are bulky UGLY . There is a SEVERE luck of imagination and the manufactures take a right in the original good name because the public is STUPID.All these cars were very innovative and affordable when they were first created.The were beautiful to look at efficient and mechanically advanced for their time.How do the CRAP the are described in the article come even close to the original idea? To the one that wants to argue my point remember if I was wrong GM won't had a bankruptcy ( that is about to have again if it keeps producing this kind of crap)

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 2:51 PM, madokie wrote:

    Yes but the 2016 Pontiac Trans Am will still look better than the camaro.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 3:32 PM, TheCarGuru wrote:

    @bcweir - 1970's Camaro's had powerplants of up to 360hp. Even the big bumper 74 had 245(net) which translates to over 300hp gross. Your comment about

    The ealry 70's as well as later 70's Camaro )2nd gen) is generally considered one of the favorite Camaro designs ever produced....why not look to it for inspiration? The 3rd generation Camaro is the resounding tur(d) of the bunch....are you smoking something?

    The Camaro as it is today apparently is a nice looking car, that is why Chevy has sold so many of them (394000+) through 2013.

    The front end revision for 2014 still resembles a 69 Camaro. No other iteration had the egg crate style grill. The rear end revisions cleaned the back up very well. The 2009 model looked as if the front and rear were designed by 2 different committees. The new tailight design looks exactly like the 69 light from the rear, and resembles the 74 through 81 lamp from the side view.

    Although I do like the CURRENT Mustang a bit more, the Mustang has now taken a departure which remains to be seen if it will be a success.

    What we don't need and don't want, is a new Honda Accord Coupe, which seems to me the direction you are heading.

    Camaro and Mustang, as well as the Challenger are a very profitable niche market. People like you don't get it. I have owned 7 Camaro's.......we need Camaro's. Nobody cares if you buy one or not.

    The new Camaro, especially the 2014 is a great looking and performing car. I was in the lot today looking at several Camaro's lined up next to each other. With the RS, SS, and base Coupe there were no 2 alike. Every car whether it be different rims, different hood, different spoilers were all different.

    That is cool, and cool is what Camaro's are.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 4:36 PM, guerre1859 wrote:

    I'm growing very, very tired of these articles, the bulk of which are extremely thin on facts and are evidently little more than thinly-disguised advertisements for the firms being evaluated, or promotions for the dubious services offered by this website.

    I don't know why Yahoo switched to the Fool as the main provider for so-called business intelligence content, but quality was clearly not the reason.

    Perhaps Yahoo pays less or, indeed, nothing for these articles--but even this would be overpaying.

    To Yahoo: perhaps you reduced your overhead, however, I wonder if losing your readership is a worthwhile tradeoff?

    Signed,

    Ex-Yahoo business reader

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 4:50 PM, Autoknowtive wrote:

    Driven both the Ford Mustang and the Chevrolet Camaro when I was in the market for a vehicle. Ride, handling, steering responsiveness, rear seat room, interior styling, gas mileage, visibility outside (window space to reduce blind-spots), lighting, exhaust sound, ingress/egress to/from the vehicle all favored the Mustang. Front seating room, pick-up speed (both from a dead-stop and from a 25mph roll) favored the Camaro. Exterior body styling (not counting lighting), interior quietness seemed to be a toss-up. Sounds like I purchased the Mustang, doesn't it? Purchased neither. Gas prices were starting to increase and opted to purchase a luxury hybrid. Would have preferred all-electric but the range per charge, charging speed, and styling is not yet as good as it needs to be. Perhaps by 2020...

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 5:05 PM, harleyben wrote:

    I have driven all three priced all three including the challenger and these 2 I have a 1988 firebird formula LT 1 350 tune port injected one owner with 124,000 miles on it frontend has been completely rebuilt going to have the car completey restored it has no rust what so ever new tires for 1/2 the price of any one of these three I liked it since 88 still love it these new ones are not worth in the 40,000 price range goodluck if you buy one!

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 5:59 PM, thegreentreefrog wrote:

    It set a record around the Newburing Track in Germany , going faster than the Porsche 911 and hitting 182 MPH in the straights. The Mustangs can't even see its tail lights it that fast. I a class by itself . Mustangs are for drag racing kids.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 7:13 PM, saursage wrote:

    The Camaro is beautiful. Incredible engine.. Looks so much better than the Mustang. Not to mention the newest Mustang is getting much worse. The General has this wrapped up.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 7:44 PM, kirkham68 wrote:

    I just dont get why GM sticks to the 60's retro look..The early 70's Camaro s were much better looking IMO..I owned a 71 RS Camaro split bumper with a 350 an 3 on the tree column shifter..fricken loved that car and it was damn quick with the short body..

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 9:23 PM, kca124cain wrote:

    Now that the Challenger seats have improved. all 3 are nie cars. Would love to have one of each. Currently driving a 2006 V6 Mustang and still love it. Reminds me of my 67 GT. The new one will be even more like it with the full slope back.

    If I can find a 2010 Camaro, I am going to get the 77stlye Pontiac Trans Am kit, so I can replicate my old 77 (my first new car).

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 9:24 PM, hawkhell wrote:

    The amount of ignorant GM hates is amazing. Amazing how many people love to jump on bandwagons.

    The new Mustang looks like a rebranded Aston Martin and I hope the Camaro does not follow in that same horrible evolution.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 9:42 PM, Chrisell13 wrote:

    First of all I wonder if any of you own a 5th gen camaro? If you did you would realize that it was never supposed to be a retro car, GM clearly stated that it took some design cues from the 1st gen camaro, but never intended to mimic the 1st gen the way that ford and dodge did with the mustang and challenger respectively. This was a completely useless article which provided no information whatsoever, all it did is to get people arguing GM vs.Ford, who cares what you like, it won't change my mind and my preferences won't change yours. As for my opinion the mustang is not my cup of tea, never was, I love my 2011 camaro, and hate what GM did with the 2014, I like the challenger but dodge priced this car way out of the market, and what gives with dodge not including back up sensors or a back up camera in the car with the biggest blind spot of the 3 (camaro is a close second). As for the 2016 camaro speculation is all over the board and GM is very tight lipped with and design clues, but knowing GM I think that there will be significant body design changes in the 2016, I certainly hope that they don't follow that ridiculous Honda looking rear they created on the 2014.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 10:16 PM, Locruid wrote:

    Meh, I got tired of the Maro/Mustang crap. They all look more and more European and last I checked I live in America. Sold my Maro and bought a 1993 Wrangler. Still unique and one hell of a motor. It may not be as fast but at least I won't get tickets anymore.

  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2014, at 11:56 PM, gmerchant11 wrote:

    All of these back and forth carping remarks deriding the Mustang or Camaro are typical of the bone headed thinking and personality of many of their fans. I love Mustangs and I love Camaros. It pisses me off that these cars are associated with the knuckle dragging trailer house set. The one who squeals the loudest is the one who likely KNOWS down deep the car he loves is the car with the most flaws. The new Mustang will be in the showrooms soon and then we'll know a whole lot more of it's improvements and where they fell short. The current gen Camaro looks awesome, but is a nightmare to see out of and it's styling is definitely long in the tooth. The 2014 front end is a wonderful improvement but what they improved up front, they lost at the back end with those horrible taillights. One really can't exist without the other. Downsize the Challenger and it'll be back in the game too.

  • Report this Comment On March 17, 2014, at 12:03 AM, chugcatsts01 wrote:

    Camaro has it hands down over the Mustang. GM builds it any way you want it. The don't have to use aftermarket parts [Fords SVT Division] to go racing. Check the sales numbers, Mustang will never catch up!

  • Report this Comment On March 17, 2014, at 12:25 AM, Elmoore wrote:

    GM has not built an automobile for the American roads for several years. They claim they are building a world car which appears to be a right hand drive vehicle by the placement of the fuel tank filler opening. In the United States driving these vehicles you have to drive on the left side of the fuel pumps and against the normal flow of traffic. You will notice these drivers stay a great distance away from the pumps so they will not damage their vehicle on the barrier posts.

  • Report this Comment On March 17, 2014, at 8:32 AM, Rolland wrote:

    The Camaro is an excellent looking car and once again GM is finally getting its act together. Of course you always have your chronic complainers about something about Chevy or GM. They just need to lightly restyle or tweak the lines on the car. Don't mess with this success at this point. That can come when interest is lost in this vehicle.

  • Report this Comment On March 17, 2014, at 9:40 AM, DrG wrote:

    They need to get the mileage up and the price down. Styling is great although some visibility problems from low design. Six cyl convertible runs $39k without taxes. Pretty steep!

  • Report this Comment On March 17, 2014, at 9:41 AM, bullitt wrote:

    The Camaro is what it is.........UGLY! Anyone that can call its' pre-vandalized interior attractive......well let's just say your taste leaves a lot to be desired!

  • Report this Comment On March 17, 2014, at 10:40 AM, puppybone69 wrote:

    Cry

    About

    Mustang

    And

    Roll

    Over

  • Report this Comment On March 17, 2014, at 11:22 AM, cityperson wrote:

    I hope GM can transform ugly Camaro to something that looks good and not over priced. We looked at one of these ugly Camaros and when you close the door it still sounds just like a GM vehicle junky. My Colorado door when closing sounds better.

  • Report this Comment On March 17, 2014, at 12:54 PM, gearhead420 wrote:

    One thing GM could do to better the Camaro is to make it look less like a Honda prelude.

  • Report this Comment On March 17, 2014, at 4:59 PM, ericjbabin wrote:

    Looks a lot like the Mustang.... which means it's really ugly.

  • Report this Comment On March 18, 2014, at 8:47 AM, mustang0311 wrote:

    I think the new mustang is terrible ford is making it look European kind of like an audi.and taking away that American muscle car look.i hope chevy doesn't do that with the Camaro.

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