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2018 Chevrolet Camaro: What You Need to Know

US News & World Report - Cars logo US News & World Report - Cars 10/10/2017 U.S. News & World Report
2018 Chevrolet Camaro© General Motors 2018 Chevrolet Camaro

The 2018 Chevrolet Camaro finishes in the top half of our sports car rankings. It delivers outstanding all-around performance, but its cabin doesn’t measure up to the higher standards set by rivals.

The 2018 Chevrolet Camaro is ranked:

Is the Chevrolet Camaro a Good Car?

Yes, the Chevy Camaro is a good car. It has several powerful engine options and handles extremely well. It also provides a fun driving experience without sacrificing ride quality. The front seats have all-day support, and there are plenty of user-friendly tech features. The Camaro is short on practicality, however. Its rear seat and trunk are tiny, making it less useful as a daily driver.

Should I Buy the Chevrolet Camaro?

If you’re buying a sports car just for weekend cruising, then it’s a great choice. But it’s worth shopping around if you want this to be your primary vehicle. The Ford Mustang delivers comparable performance but has a nicer interior and more trunk space than the Camaro. The Dodge Challenger can't match the Chevy’s handling, but it has plenty of power and a larger rear seat and trunk.

We Did the Research for You: 27 Reviews Analyzed

We want our car reviews to be one-stop shops that provide you with all the information you need before heading to the dealership. To create our reviews, we combine professional test driver opinions with quantifiable data like crash test and reliability ratings.

The 2018 Chevrolet Camaro is part of a generation that began with the 2016 model year. Because there have been few major changes since then, this review uses applicable research and data from the 2016 through 2018 model years.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking vehicles for a decade, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of combined experience in the automotive industry. Our car reviews are unbiased. To keep them objective, we don't accept expensive gifts or trips from automakers, and a third party handles all advertising on our site.

How Much Does the Chevrolet Camaro Cost?

The Camaro’s base 1LS trim has a starting price of $25,905. That’s in line with what many class rivals cost, give or take about $1,000. However, prices can balloon depending on which trim you choose. If you want one of the LT trims, you’re only talking about a few thousand dollars more. But if you want a V8 engine, you need an SS trim or the ZL1, and that’s a hefty increase. The 1SS starts at $37,000, and the ZL1 starts north of $61,000.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Chevrolet dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Chevrolet deals page.

Chevrolet Camaro Versus the Competition

There are really two types of sports cars: the small, nimble offerings like the Mazda MX-5 Miata – which don’t have a ton of power but can turn on a dime – and the muscle cars like the Camaro, which are still agile but more known for their stratospheric horsepower ratings.

Which Is Better: Chevrolet Camaro or Ford Mustang?

The Ford Mustang and Chevy Camaro have been fierce rivals for decades now, and 2018 is just the latest showdown. The Mustang is available as a coupe or convertible and comes standard with a turbo-four engine, though two V8 engines are available. The turbo-four will cost you less in fuel that any Camaro powertrain. Ford discontinued the Mustang's V6 for 2018, so if you want six cylinders, the Camaro is for you. The Mustang’s cabin is nicer than the Camaro’s, and its trunk is bigger. It also has a slightly lower starting price. These two are pretty even in terms of performance, but the Ford wins the day with its superior interior and better daily drivability.

Which Is Better: Chevrolet Camaro or Dodge Challenger?

The Dodge Challenger doesn’t offer a convertible, separating it from its Chevy rival. The Challenger comes standard with a V6 engine, and there are many more-powerful options, including several V8s. This Dodge can’t match the Chevy’s fuel economy, but it does offer more power. Inside, it also has more space. The Challenger is on the short list (and maybe is the list) of sports cars with an adult-friendly back seat, and it also has a large trunk. The cabin is well-built with quality materials, and the infotainment system is easy to use. The Challenger is a little more expensive than the Camaro, and it’s more practical. However, the Camaro offers more agility and driving enjoyment. Choosing between the two comes down to your priorities.

Camaro Performance

Camaro Engine: No Weak Choices Here

The Camaro’s base engine is a 275-horsepower turbo-four. A 335-horsepower V6 is available, as are two high-performance V8s that put out 455 and 650 horsepower, respectively. The base engine has good acceleration and plenty of power for all driving situations, and it only gets more impressive as you go up the ladder. The 650-horsepower V8 in the Camaro ZL1 will go from zero to 60 mph in a blistering 3.5 seconds.

Camaro Gas Mileage: Shockingly Efficient, With a Catch

Sports cars will always crumble at the altar of mpg deities like the Toyota Prius and Hyundai Ioniq, but that doesn’t mean they all get bad gas mileage. The base Camaro, for example, gets 22 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway. Those are good ratings for the class, and they’d be respectable even for a typical sedan.

The catch is that the Camaro’s base engine requires premium gasoline, so despite its high ratings, it’ll still cost you about $200 more in gas money each year than if you opted for the less efficient V6 engine (19/29 mpg city/highway), which takes regular gasoline.

Camaro Ride and Handling: Attack Those Corners

The Camaro is a fun-to-drive car, and everything about its ride and handling plays into that. It’s nimble and planted around turns, and the ride is comfortable. Responsive steering and strong brakes help you get in and out of corners with ease. For track-day adventures, Chevy offers the 1LE Performance package with the V6- and V8-powered models.

Camaro Interior

How Many People Does the Camaro Seat?

The Camaro seats four people, but good luck finding people to volunteer to ride in the back. The rear seats are confining, and adults won’t fit comfortably. The front seats are more spacious and have plenty of support.

Camaro and Car Seats

The Camaro has two full sets of LATCH car-seat connectors. The tether anchors are easy to find, but the lower anchors are troublesome because they’re set deep in the seat.

Camaro Interior Quality

The Camaro’s cabin isn’t one of the best in the class. It’s pretty good from a styling standpoint, but the materials quality isn’t on the same level as rivals’ interiors.

Camaro Cargo Space

The Camaro has just over 9 cubic feet of trunk space in coupe models and a little more than 7 cubic feet in convertible models. That’s enough room for about 5-7 grocery bags but not enough space for vacation luggage or any large items. The trunk opening is also narrow, and the liftover height is high.

Camaro Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

Standard features in the Camaro include satellite radio, two USB ports, and the MyLink infotainment system with a 7-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and voice activation. OnStar with 4G LTE and a Wi-Fi hot spot also comes standard. Available features include a nine-speaker Bose audio system, wireless smartphone charging, and an upgraded MyLink system with a larger screen.

The Camaro offers great standard connectivity features like Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a Wi-Fi hot spot. The MyLink infotainment system is one of the best around; it’s easy to use, and the touch screen is responsive.

For more information, read What Is Apple CarPlay? and What Is Android Auto? Then, see the Best Cars With Apple CarPlay and Best Cars With Android Auto.

Camaro Reliability

Is the Chevrolet Camaro Reliable?

The 2018 Camaro is part of a generation that consistently earns predicted reliability ratings of three out of five from J.D. Power and Associates. That’s an average rating among all vehicles, but it’s a bit below average for a sports car.

Chevrolet Camaro Warranty

Chevrolet backs the Camaro with a three-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty. Several class rivals offer similar warranty terms.

Camaro Safety

Camaro Crash Test Results

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety hasn’t crash tested the 2018 Camaro yet, but the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gives it a perfect five-star overall rating.

Camaro Safety Features

The Camaro comes standard with a rearview camera and Chevrolet’s Teen Driver technology, which lets you set speed and audio volume limits for the vehicle. Available driver assistance features include a head-up display, blind spot monitoring, rear parking sensors, and rear cross traffic alert.

Which Chevrolet Camaro Model Is Right for Me?

The Camaro comes in six trims and two body styles. The standard body style is the coupe. It’ll cost an extra $5,200-$6,000 to get the convertible model, depending on the trim. In the three lower trims (1LS, 1LT, and 2LT), you can also upgrade from the base four-cylinder engine to a V6 for $1,495.

The three higher trims all feature a V8 engine, and if you want V8 power, those are your only options. A Camaro with a V8 will cost you at least $37,000. If you can live with the V6 engine (or especially if you’re okay with the turbo-four), then the 2LT trim provides great value. It has plenty of standard features, and its starting price is only $30,500.

Chevrolet Camaro 1LS

The Camaro 1LS has a base price of $25,905. There are several available features, including Brembo brakes, a performance suspension, a sunroof, a Bose audio system, and the upgraded MyLink infotainment system. Some features can be added individually for as little as $150, while others are part of option packages that can cost upward of $4,000.

Chevrolet Camaro LT

The Camaro LT is split into two trims: the 1LT and the 2LT. The Camaro 1LT has a starting price of $26,700. The main difference between the 1LT and the 1LS is that the 1LT comes with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Both trims feature the same options.

The Camaro 2LT starts at $30,500. In addition to the 1LT’s features, the 2LT comes with leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, the upgraded MyLink infotainment system, and a Bose audio system. The 2LT comes standard with a six-speed manual, but you can add an eight-speed automatic for $1,495. Most of the option packages with the 2LT are focused on styling upgrades.

Chevrolet Camaro SS

Like the LT, the Camaro SS is broken down to 1SS and 2SS trims. The Camaro 1SS has a starting price of $37,000. The big change with the SS trim is that it comes with the 455-horsepower V8 engine. Brembo brakes also come standard.

The Camaro 2SS starts at $42,000. It comes standard with a heated steering wheel, a head-up display, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, rear parking sensors, and wireless device charging.

Beyond the changes listed here, the 1SS and 2SS are comparable to the 1LT and 2LT in terms of available features.

Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

The Camaro ZL1 starts at $61,500. It comes with the 650-horsepower, supercharged V8 engine, Recaro sport seats, Magnetic Ride Control, and several other performance and styling upgrades. New for 2018, you can add the 1LE Track Performance package to this trim for $7,500. It adds a performance suspension, as well as several aerodynamic upgrades.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Chevrolet dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Chevrolet deals page.

The Final Call

The 2018 Chevrolet Camaro delivers exactly what you want from a sports car: It’s athletic and fun-to-drive, and it has plenty of useful features so it’s not a one-dimensional driving machine. It’s not the hands-down class leader among sports cars, but it is certainly worth checking out.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

Read the full 2018 Chevrolet Camaro reviewon U.S. News & World Report for more details, photos, specs and prices.

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