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2009 SEMA Show: Our favorite modified Chevrolet Camaros

2010 chevrolet camaro Sema 2009

2009 SEMA Show:

The favorite modified Chevrolet Camaros Ford may have been the featured automaker at the SEMA show this year, but this was also, very much, the year of the Camaro. And that’s understandable. While the customizing crowd has had several years now to play around with Ford’s latest reincarnation of the Mustang, first introduced in 2005 and refreshed for 2009, the Camaro is freshly minted. Last year, the Las Vegas Convention Center was chock full of examples of the then new Dodge Challenger. But this year, you could practically walk one end of the million square feet of SEMA to the other stepping only on new Camaros, without ever setting foot on the floor. But we wouldn’t recommend it.

Here’s a quick look at some of the more notable examples we saw.

Lingenfelter LS7 Chevrolet Camaro

For those who live by the motto “Too much is never enough,” Lingenfelter Performance Engineering (LPE) has teamed up with Hotchkis Sport Suspension to create this 750-hp Camaro SS. Powered by a supercharged, 7.0-liter Corvette Z06 LS7 V8, the Lingenfelter Camaro also gets Hotchkis springs and anti-sway bars, a custom body kit, upgraded brakes, and various other modifications.

Jay Leno Camaro

Chevrolet showed five Camaro concept vehicles at SEMA, including a twin-turbo, 3.6-liter direct-injection V6 model built for comedian/car collector Jay Leno. With 425-hp on tap, Chevy says Leno’s Camaro delivers the power of a Camaro SS with the fuel economy of a V6. The engine is matched with a six-speed manual transmission. Other modifications include a larger capacity radiator, custom exhaust system, lowered suspension, upgraded brakes, and a body kit with functional brake cooling ducts.

Camaro Synergy

Another Chevrolet concept, the Camaro Synergy features a new color, Synergy Green, that will be offered on a special-edition model in 2010. (Think of it as Chevy’s answer to the Plum Crazy Dodge Challenger.) It also features a variety of accessories offered by Chevrolet dealers including 21-inch custom wheels, a body kit, hood stripes, and a rear spoiler. Other modifications include equipment Chevy says they may offer in the future if there is sufficient public interest, including a lowered suspension, Brembo brakes, and interior trim matching the exterior color.

Yenko Camaro

The son of a Pennsylvania Chevrolet dealer, Don Yenko started modifying Chevys in the 1960s, and he became a legend for transplanting 427 cubic-inch engines into Camaros and other Bowtie-wearing coupes. General Marketing Capital Incorporated now owns the rights to the Yenko name and brand, and it showed a prototypes of a new Yenko Camaro. Based on a Camaro SS, the Phase 1 Yenko gets a 600-hp, 7.0-liter supercharged LS7 V8 matched with a six-speed manual transmission. Other modifications include upgraded brakes, high-flow exhaust system, and 22-inch Yenko-specific billet aluminum wheels. Cosmetic touches include Yenko striping and badging, and obligatory “sYc” logos on the seats and floor mats. Like the original Yenko cars, plans call for a Phase II and Phase III versions with more power and performance.

—Jim Travers
Consumer Reports

Rating: ★★★★

1 comment to 2009 SEMA Show: Our favorite modified Chevrolet Camaros

  1. Henery Schaffer
    November 13th, 2009 at 8:55 AM

    I found your blog on google and read a few of your other posts. I just added you to my Google News Reader. Keep up the good work. Look forward to reading more from you in the future.