2012 Chevy Camaro Review Expert Car Review 2012 Chevy Camaro

The 2012 Chevy Camaro continues the storied tradition of muscle car performance and power, while improving on more practical things too.

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Auto Sales > Car Advice > Car Reviews > 2012 Chevy Camaro Review

2012 Chevy Camaro Review

Bruce Sheridan

2012 Chevy Camaro Review


The 2012 Chevy Camaro is a vehicle that masterfully ties its muscle car roots to what is most important to drivers today. It's a stunning vehicle, and will definitely turn heads wherever it goes.

It's more than just a pretty face too. This American sports car is designed for performance, and is one of the best choices to get the most horsepower on a budget. Its newly refined handling also makes it a blast to drive. New this year is the ultimate performance trim for the Camaro; the ZL1. Its turbocharged engine makes it the most powerful production Camaro ever.


The new Camaro is definitely a top choice if all you want from your car is sexy styling and powerful performance. It is even one of the cheapest sports cars on the market.

If you want a more practical vehicle you can also drive your family around in, then there are better options than the 2012 Chevrolet Camaro. It has great fuel economy numbers, but the interior is not very accommodating, especially in the back seat.

2012 Chevy Camaro
Starting MSRP Max City / Hwy MPG
$23,280 18 / 29
Pros Cons
Fast and powerful Little back seat room
Great styling Hard to see out of
Solid gas mileage

2012 Chevy Camaro Trims

The 2012 Camaro can come as a coupe or convertible, and new this year is the super performance ZL1 trim. The coupe LS and LT trims, along with the convertible LT trim, come with the 3.6L V6 engine standard. The SS trim comes with the upgraded 6.2L V8, and the ZL1 comes with a new turbocharged 6.2L V8 engine.

Moving up the trims will not only get you bigger engines, it will also get you more standard features, along with optional technology and luxury features. The LT and SS trims will also have a 45th anniversary edition package available, which comes with its own unique interior and exterior styling.

Camaro Coupe Trims
Name MSRP Engine Best MPG City / Hwy
LS $23,280 3.6L V6 18 / 29
LT $25,280 3.6L V6 18 / 29
SS $32,280 6.2L V8 16 / 24
ZL1 $54,095 6.2L V8 14 / 19
Camaro Convertible Trims
Name MSRP Engine Best MPG City / Hwy
LT $30,180 3.6L V6 18 / 29
SS $38,330 6.2L V8 16 / 24

2012 Chevy Camaro Performance

The standard engine for the new Chevy Camaro is its 3.6L V6 engine, which produces 323 horsepower and 278 lbs-ft of torque. These are great numbers for its class, but its heavier curb weight makes it slower off the line than some competitors. This is the most efficient engine, getting you an estimated 18 city / 29 hwy mpg.

Upgrading to the 6.2L V8 engine for the SS trim gets you up to 426 horsepower and 420 lbs-ft of torque. This engine really does not sacrifice much in terms of gas mileage; it gets 16 city / 24 hwy mpg.

The top of the line turbocharged 6.2L V8 engine on the ZL1 trim has beastly performance numbers, with 580 horsepower and 556 lbs-ft of torque, while getting 14 city / 19 hwy mpg. Tires beware; Camaros with this engine will be top of the line burnout machines.

No matter what engine you pick, you'll be getting one of the fastest sports cars in this class. Nearly everyone who has driven the Camaro has nothing but good things to say about its handling and performance, and it is a genuinely thrilling car to drive.

2012 Chevy Camaro Interior / Exterior
Interior / Exterior

The exterior of the 2012 Chevy Camaro is one of the best looking new cars for sale. Its combination of its muscle car heritage and modernistic styling is head turning, to say the least. The balance between the two is very difficult to attain, but Chevy seems to have hit the nail on the head with this striking sports car after its last redesign.

The interior is not so graceful. The inexpensive plastic materials won't take your breath away. It is also a little cramped on the inside, especially if you're unlucky enough to have to sit in the back seat. There have been improvements on the inside however; the new steering wheel is much better than the last one and its retro look and design is pretty cool.

2012 Chevy Camaro Features

The 201 Camaro has some very innovative features that combine modern technology with old school essentials. A new heads up display projects an image onto the windshield with vital status information, not the least of which being your speed. It certainly helps to keep your eyes on the road when you don't have to be looking down at an instrument panel so often. There are also four auxiliary gauges available near the gear shifter that is very reminiscent of this sports car's muscle car roots.

2012 Chevy Camaro Safety

Safety is a key factor for any car that you are buying, but it is a little more important when you're dealing with cars that it is very easy to get a little lead foot with. The Camaro is an especially safe vehicle for a sports car, and it aced every category of its government crash tests. The new Camaro comes with a host of standard safety features, including eight airbags and six months of OnStar services with Automatic Crash Response. It also has a very helpful rear view camera which helps the very limited visibility from the inside.

Also consider

Car Name Starting MSRP
2012 Ford Mustang $22,310
2012 Dodge Challenger $25,195
2012 Hyundai Genesis Coupe $22,250
2012 Mazda MX-5 Miata $23,470

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