Every year, car enthusiasts get a look at all the over-the-top customs and one-off performance models they can handle at the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show in Las Vegas. Thankfully, the 2018 edition did not disappoint.
Everything from ready-for-combat Jeep Wranglers to a supercharged Mustang with underbody lighting went on display this time around. But General Motors had a few things of its own worth noticing at SEMA. In addition to a 50th anniversary COPO Camaro, Chevrolet showcased a 700-horsepower, electric-powered Camaro built for the drag strip.
Of the fastest Camaros we’ve seen over the years, we hadn’t seen one capable of running a quarter mile in nine seconds flat. Chevy said that’s about what the eCOPO Camaro concept, built along with Hancock and Lane Racing, can do on the track. If you could pick only one SEMA car to drive in 2018, this one would be a worthy contender.
What 600 lb-ft of torque does for a sprint
While we’ll try not to get too bogged down by the numbers, this Chevy concept’s specs are too insane to brush past. First of all, no production Camaro has come close to the 700 horses its electric motor produces. According to a GM statement, the eCOPO also offers 600 pound-feet of torque from its powerplant.
To get there, the team of Chevy along with Hancock and Lane put together an 800-volt battery pack, which is double that of the Bolt EV and a few versions of the Tesla Model S. Four separate elements of the pack, each supplying 200 volts, were place in different areas of the car to stabilize it.
From a stop, Chevy says the eCOPO can run the quarter-mile sprint in “the 9.0-second range.” That would be quite the feat, considering a performance Model S 100D shattered records for a production car with its 10.76-second runs in 2016.
Engineers will continue testing this model to see if it can improve upon those performance times. So we’ll stay tuned to see what the team does in the coming months.
Ready for the Zombie Mustang?
Fans of electric performance may remember the buzz from another high-voltage conversion of a muscle car: Zombie 222. The team at Austin’s Blood Shed Motors unleashed that 800-horsepower (1,800 pound-feet of torque) monster on an unsuspecting world a few years back.
Its powerplant allowed the Zombie to break Mario Andretti’s Mustang top speed record with a run to 178 mph. In terms of acceleration, it could hit 60 miles per hour from a stop in 1.79 seconds. Its quarter-mile time at last check was 9.89 seconds hitting 141 mph.
Needless to say, Chevy’s performance team is onto something in its collaboration with Hancock and Lane, which had made a name for itself on the NHRA drag-race circuit and worked with Patrick McCue, the current holder of the electric-drag-race record.
McCue’s “Shock and Awe” made its run in a little over 8.3 seconds in 2016. With this level of performance, we doubt many are going to miss the smoke (and roar) of combustion engines. Burnt rubber will still apply, however.
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