The Performance Car Chronicles Part 10 2010 - the Present: All Hell is Breaking Loose!

At 840 HP, the 2018 Dodge SRT Demon is the most powerful American production car -- EVER! Along with the 840 HP 2018 Dodge SRT Demon is the 707 HP Hellcat - a pair from the netherworld for sure !!

Story by Society Staff
Reprint with permission only.

It's 2017 and All Hell is breaking loose!

2010 - The Factories were not kidding about performance.

When the first decade of the new millennium ended, the big three automakers – Ford, Chrysler and GM had all shown their commitment to ever increasing performance vehicles. Each company had at least one car capable of competing in international competition – The Ford GT, The Dodge Viper and the Chevy Corvette.

Both Ford and Chrysler were producing versions of their retro –look “pony cars” that were strictly for the track – The Mustang FR500 series -- and the drag strip – The Mustang FR500 Cobra Jet and Mopar Drag Pack SRT Challenger. As we started the next decade, an old friend was back --- The Chevrolet Camaro

After an absence of 8 years, GM released the new Camaro with a retro-inspired style evoking Camaros of the past. The 2010 Camaro SS was equipped with a 6.2L (378 LS7 engine rated at 426HP. Camaro rejoined the performance world. This matched the Dodge Challenger SRT/8 6.1 L Hemi with 425 HP. Mustang Shelby GT500 still had the edge with its 5.4L DOHC engine putting out 540 HP also,

Ford began offering FACTORY performance packages through Ford Racing. These included Handling packages for all model Mustangs and “SuperPaks” for GT and Shelby models. The SuperPaks were supercharger packages that increased horsepower to 400 or 500 for the GT and an awesome 605 HP for the Shelby models. Ford was not kidding around!!

2011 - There’s no substitute for cubic inches!

Harkening back to the 60’s, the manufacturers realized that they could increase horsepower by increasing the size of the engines. That’s exactly what they did:

  • Ford - upped the standard Mustang GT engine from 4.6L to 5.0 with 412 HP
  • Dodge - upped their Hemi to 392 (6.4L) 470HP in the Challenger and Charger SRT lines
  • Camaro – stood pat with their 6.2L 426HP motor standard in the newly introduced Camaro SS ’s.

2012 – Bringing back some old friends

After seeing what Ford and Chrysler did in 2011, Chevy took a page from their past and introduced a modern version of their legendary ZL1. The new Camaro ZL1 featured an all aluminum 6.2 L supercharged and intercooled engine producing 580 HP. Special Performance Traction Management system gave the car five controlled traction settings for road and track conditions. The rest of the ZL1 was strengthened and upgraded for the power of the car.

Ford also went back to the past with the reintroduction of the “Boss 302” version of the Mustang GT. By modifying the cylinder heads and cams, the engineering upped the standard GT’s 5.0L engine’s 412 HP to 444HP. To further improve the car, special handling and brake packages were made standard.

2013 – Taking it to the streets

The performance program at Ford continued to build on the success of the FR500 series and Cobra Jet cars. For 2013, they offered three Mustangs to the performance crowd - The standard GT with the 5.0L now putting out 420 HP; a “Boss 302” version with 444HP and the top of the line Shelby GT500 with an incredible 650HP! Game on!

Never one to shy from performance, Chevrolet also put three models of their Camaro in the performance track. The SS version had the 6.4L 426 HP LSX engine, but the newly released 1LE option gave road track level handling. The last Camaro was the “killer” ZL1 all aluminum version of the 6.2L engine with a supercharger for a neck snapping 580 HP.

Dodge offered several models to compete with Ford and Chevy. The standard Challenger R/T with the 5.7L Hemi at 375 HP and the Challenger R/T SRT with the 392 Hemi packing 470 HP. Dodge also offered these engines in their larger 4-door Dodge Charger. This car was perfect for those who wanted something roomier than a “pony car” but with the same power and performance . . . .


2012 Camaro ZL1

In 2012 the all aluminum engine, 580 HP, ZL1 made a return to the Camaro lineup.


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