Thursday, February 10, 2011

Chicago Day One Recap

Day one at the Chicago autoshow is over and the emerging trend is high horsepower V8s. Going against the grain of the past few autoshow seasons Chevrolet, Dodge and Hyundai dominated day one with their new performance offerings. Chevy introduced the ZL1 version of the Camaro with a supercharged 550 horsepower/550 lb-ft of torque LSA V8. The highest performing Camaro of all time also receives the expected agressive exterior enhancements along with a beefed-up drivetrain, magnetic ride suspension, and bigger brakes. An all black interior and a dual mode exhaust are also exclusive ZL1 features. The ZL1 is set to bring the challange to the Mustang GT500 in about a years time.

Not to be outdone Dodge also unveiled the SRT8 version of its new Charger. Looking a little like a four-door GT-R the latest SRT8 features more unique styling compared to the first generation SRT8. The biggest change aside from the 465 horsepower/465 lb-ft of torque 6.4 liter Hemi V8 is the large blacked-out Evoesque grille upfront. The SRT8 also receives unique 20 inch wheels, Brembo brakes, a larger rear spoiler, and heavily bolstered seats. Dodge predicts high 4 second 0-60 time along with a 1/4 mile time in the high 12 second range when the Charger goes on sale this fall.

Rounding out the day was a yet another V8 powered sedan, the Hyundai Genesis R-Spec. The Genesis R is the first application of Hyundai's new 5 liter direct injected V8. The 429 horsepower/376 lb-ft V8 will be paired up with a new 8 speed automatic in the 2012 Genesis which also receives new Audiesque LED daytime running lights, updated tailights and restyled fascias. Hyundai also promises to up the sport factor on the R-Spec with bigger stabilizer bars and brakes, and recalibrated steering.

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