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The legendary Le Mans 24-hour race is in its 100th year, and the weeklong celebration of all things racing is well underway. An early fan favorite, though, isn’t one of the alien prototypes or iconic sports cars. It’s a thundering, raucous, prototypically American NASCAR Cup Series Camaro. And soon enough, 56 lucky people will get to own a Garage 56 Special Edition Camaro ZL1 production car as tribute.

What is the Garage 56 NASCAR Camaro at Le Mans?

Le Mans is typically reserved for specific vehicle classes. These include Hybrid hypercars, prototypes, and more traditional-looking GT Sports Cars. But a special class is open to one unique vehicle a year, called Garage 56.

Named because it is an addition to the allowed 55 entries for the Le Mans 24-hour race, Garage 56 has been home to unique race cars over the years. Most recently, the rocket-shaped DeltaWing made waves for its unique, narrow-body design.

For 2023, NASCAR and its NextGen car concept are hitting the vaunted 8.47-mile course under the Garage 56 banner.

There are few races around the world that are well-known beyond the world of car enthusiasts. Indy 500, Monaco Grand Prix, and the Daytona 500 are surely on that list. But one event, held in the picturesque landscape of France, holds a similar distinction. The Le Mans 24-hour race is iconic around the world. But this year, it’s more special than ever. Not only is it the 100th Anniversary of the prestigious event, but a NASCAR stock car is taking part for the first time in the modern era.

How is the Garage 56 production Camaro different from the ZL1?

The Camaro ZL1 Garage 56 Le Mans edition production car parked on the track
Camaro ZL1 Garage 56 Edition | Chevrolet

They say that beauty is more than skin deep, but the Garage 56 Edition Camaro ZL1 doesn’t get any changes under the hood. It still comes with the roaring 6.2-liter V8 engine delivering 650 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque. And it will still come with either a six-speed manual or 10-speed automatic transmission.

The surface changes though, are significant in setting the Garage 56 Camaro road car apart from the rest of the ZL1 family. For starters, the front canards are unique to the Le Mans tribute car, reflecting the additional front aero pieces on the race car. There are graphics packages to choose from as well, including a silver, gold, and black accent package that sits atop the standard Riptide Blue paint.

The rear wing from the standard ZL1 gets the axe, replaced instead by a NASCAR-style lip spoiler on the trailing edge of the trunk. And with Goodyear Eagle F1 SuperCar tires and bespoke wheels, the Garage 56 Camaro will surely stand out from its peers.

How many Garage 56 cars will there be?

It’s been well-documented that the Camaro is going away after the 2024 model year. As such, only a handful of new Garage 56 Camaro production cars are available. Appropriately, only 56 of the special-edition Camaro will roll off the assembly line, so we expect quite a price premium over the standard ZL1.

No word yet on when the car will be available, but with production ending in 2024 and no major engineering changes, we don’t suspect a long lead time before the Garage 56 production car hits the streets.

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