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http://www.delmarvanow.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070815/NEWS01/70815091/1002

Hybrid Camaro new cruiser of my dreams
By Mark Phelan
Detroit Free Press


DETROIT - It could be the future of cruising, a muscle car for the 21st century: A Chevrolet Camaro that could approach 40 mpg on the highway and 30 mpg in the city.

It might glide silently through future Woodward Dream Cruises, running on battery power up to 25 mph but with a beefy V8 engine poised to leap to life for a 0-60 sprint.

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This Camaro, wedding Chevrolet’s legendary small-block V8 engine to General Motors’ advanced new hybrid system, isn’t on the drawing board yet, but it is feasible, a knowledgeable GM source told the Detroit Free Press. GM has the parts on the shelf to get this dream car cruising. It would combine production-ready hybrid technology that hits the road this fall in some GM vehicles with the celebrated new Camaro that is to go on sale in early 2009.

“The Camaro is Chevrolet and GM’s halo car,” said Joe Phillippi, principal of AutoTrends Consulting, in Short Hills, N.J. ”It projects an image that reflects on the whole corporation. To offer all the performance aspects of a classic Camaro and still be environmentally friendly ... that’s a real plus from an image point of view.

“A hybrid Camaro, it could go a long way toward changing the perception of General Motors and Chevrolet,” he said, particularly if the car won the seal of approval of Consumer Reports magazine or some other respected third party.

Even Chris Paine, director of the documentary ”Who Killed the Electric Car?,“ which took GM to task for halting the EV1 electric car in the 1990s, would applaud such a move.

”The word hybrid is really starting to mean something at GM; they deserve another look from people,” Paine said. “Anything that saves fuel and gives equivalent power is going to be exciting to the consumer.”

Because nobody is officially working on a gasoline-electric Camaro hybrid, the fuel economy and performance projections are mine, not GM’s. They are based on a reasonable extrapolation of the company’s public statements about the Camaro and GM’s new hybrid system.

”Every automaker is going to have to have a hybrid version of almost every model they build,” said Tony Swan, senior editor at Car and Driver magazine. “It’s a smart thing to do for marketing.”

That hybrid system is impressive enough that Germany’s engineering titans - BMW and Mercedes-Benz - jumped at the chance to share it with GM, kicking in cash and engineering talent to develop it.

"The Detroit Three have such a horrible public perception as technology laggards,” said Michelle Krebs, editor of Auto Observer.com. “It’s critical that they turn that around.”

The new hybrid system combines the cylinder deactivation system that helped the Chevrolet Silverado achieve the highest fuel economy rating of any big pickup. It’s a system called the ”two-mode” hybrid.

It recaptures energy used in braking to charge its batteries and shuts the engine off when the vehicle is idling or puttering along at neighborhood - or Dream Cruise - speeds.

The system boosts fuel economy in city driving as much as 45 percent and improves highway fuel economy by a smaller amount, according to engineers working on the GM-BMW-Mercedes joint development program.

GM has already said a Camaro with a conventional V8 engine will get 30 mpg on the highway.

The V6 Camaro will certainly top that, so it’s a not too big a leap to infer eye-popping fuel economy figures for a hybrid version of the reincarnated muscle car.

There’s a real question as to whether buyers want a hybrid performance car, though.

Honda failed when it pitched the hybrid Accord as a performance model, and the go-fast hybrid version of Lexus’ GS sport sedan has struggled, said Rebecca Lindland, analyst with Global Insight in Lexington, Mass.

“The traditional hybrid buyer is not worried about performance,” she said. ”That may be changing, but even the slightest hint that it didn’t perform as well as the non-hybrid would be death.”

Most hybrid systems on the road today have little effect on highway fuel economy, but the two-mode was optimized to improve that number as well by letting the vehicle operate in fuel-saving four-cylinder mode for a longer period and at higher speeds than non-hybrid models.

GM is considering using the new system on other vehicles from the Zeta family of cars that includes the Camaro.

The company hasn’t approved any of them for production. GM is weighing the fuel economy and image benefits against the system’s very high cost - considerably more than the less powerful and sophisticated systems used in today’s hybrids.

GM has admitted it will lose thousands of dollars on every one of the big Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukons that will offer the system beginning this fall.

The price should fall as production volume rises and the company gets more experience with the system, and GM documents say the company does plan to offer it in rear-wheel-drive cars, though it won’t say which ones.

“It looked for years like GM was behind Toyota” in hybrid and alternative-fuel technology, Phillippi said. ”Now we’re seeing significant movement. With the Tahoe and Yukon hybrids, GM is years ahead.”
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I also could not see myself buying a hybrid Camaro. I mean what would the exhaust sound like if you changed the muffler? How would it respond to mods?

I know there are atvantages to hybrids such as peak torque on take off, but if its on a large V8 it should already have quiet a bit of low end torque.

I think it would help offset the cost of the SUV/Truck hybrids.

It would probley be ok for someone that wants some power but wants to keep there car stock.

I think if the SUV/Truck hybrids do well in tunibillity and response to mods then it would be more acceptable for the Camaro but if not then I don't see them doing well at all.
 

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If they got the weight down on the electric cells, and equipment I could think about buying one. The mods could be the same for the gas motor side (cam, exhaust, etc) but the electric side would be new ground, but I think this would be where the electronic engineering would get more involved. Imagine, MSD boost cells and heavy amp generators, lol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I am sure you could burn the tires off of it.

I rented a Prius and took it to the track that think had some take off and the touque is limited on those. Once it got going it was crap but on the 1-8th mile track it outran my 3.8 mustang.

If there was a way to turn the torque up on it I am sure that thing would be able to break some things.
 

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would be cool..the thing is Electric cars..for the power they produce if done right will outdo a gas engine anyday..

but why not a hybrid camaro..might work..
 

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I don't know, battery power is coming on strong. Have you seen the specs for the Tesla Roadster?

...from Wikipedia....
The Tesla Roadster is a fully electric sports car, and is the first car to be produced by electric car firm Tesla Motors. Tesla claims prototypes have been able to accelerate from 0-60 mph (100 km/h) in about 4 seconds, and reach a top speed of over 130 mph (210 km/h). Additionally, the car will be able to travel more than 200 miles (322 km) on a single charge of its lithium-ion battery system. The Roadster's efficiency is reported as 133 Wh/km (214 Wh/Mile)[2] or equivalent to 135 mpg (1.74 l/100 km).
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
yeah but that car is a $100k car and small. Also 0-60 in 4 seconds, what if you want to go faster? How would you mod it? Another thing is electric cars have a lot of power on take off. I would like to see the 1/4 mile time of that car. Do you think it could still perform in the 1/4 or any med or large road track with an all electric motor?
 

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yeah but that car is a $100k car and small. Also 0-60 in 4 seconds, what if you want to go faster? How would you mod it? Another thing is electric cars have a lot of power on take off. I would like to see the 1/4 mile time of that car. Do you think it could still perform in the 1/4 or any med or large road track with an all electric motor?
They'll have that once they get official tests done, right now this is just all their estimations.
From their website:
"NOTE: We‘re confident in all of the performance figures contained in this section, but, as a new car company, we‘re still awaiting the day our car, a track, and a government guy with a clipboard all meet. For now, please use these numbers as our best estimations, and check back in for updates."



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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Don't get me wrong I like the telsa car too but its out of my range:BangHead:

I find plugins that can take you around without using any fuel interesting in gen.

Its not that slow really IMO. I would compare it to a late 90's 6 cyl car in terms of 0-60


Where did you get 12 seconds from?



http://www.autobloggreen.com/2007/01/07/detroit-auto-show-chevy-volt-vs-gm-ev1-by-the-numbers/

Volt

Battery type: LiIon

Battery volume: 100L

Charging voltage: while driving

Charging Time: 6-6.5 hours

QuickCharge Capable YES

Passenger capacity: 4 passengers

Acceleration (0-60) 8-8.5 sec

Top speed: 120+ mph

Pure EV Range: 40 miles

Total Range 640 miles

Curb weight: 3140 lbs
 

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When GM first released the Chevy Volt concept..that was their reported "expected" number for 0-60. That was what they were HOPING to get, at the least.

Personally, I'd like to see a lower top-speed (my s-10 is governed to around 100mph-ish) and a higher acceleration. (as a trade-off, dunno if electric motors work that way though)
Not many people are going to be going 120mph in a friggin golf cart ;).



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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Here are a few comparible cars in that 0-60 range:

Volt 8-8.5


1999 Chrysler 300M 7.9
2003 PT Cruiser 10.9
1998 Chrysler Sebring JXi Conv. 10.2
2002 Chevrolet Avalanche Z71 8.3
1993 Chevrolet Camaro V-6 9.0
1998 Chevrolet Cavalier Z24 Conv. 8.7
1982 Chevrolet Corvette 9.2
1995 Chevrolet Lumina LS 9.5
2005 Ford Crown Victoria LX 8.1
2003 Ford Expedition 9.5
2001 Ford Focus ZX3 8.7
2005 Ford Focus ZX4 (5spd) 7.9
1999 Ford Mustang Convertible V6 8.6
2000 Ford Taurus SE 8.0
2001 Honda Accord LX V-6 8.3
2003 Honda Accord Sedan (I-4) 8.0
2003 Honda Pilot EX 8.1
2003 Hummer H2 10.7
2000 Jaguar S-Type 3.0 8.7
1996 Lexus LX 450 10.4
2002 Lincoln LS 7.9


These are just a few examples. source: http://www.albeedigital.com/supercoupe/articles/0-60times.html
 

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yeah but that car is a $100k car and small. Also 0-60 in 4 seconds, what if you want to go faster? How would you mod it? Another thing is electric cars have a lot of power on take off. I would like to see the 1/4 mile time of that car. Do you think it could still perform in the 1/4 or any med or large road track with an all electric motor?
I just used it as an example of how far batteries are coming in cars. No car is perfect, but the technology is gaining so much ground. I could never give up my V8 rumble for a whisper-quiet whine. But to enhance the V8 with fuel economy when I don't want to stomp on it (those 2 times a year)? I could do that.

If only big oil will let it happen. I doubt it.

(btw, my 13 year old V8 AVERAGES 19 mpg, and that's with autocrossing every 2 weeks. I get 35 mpg instant readings at 75 mph on the highway)
 
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