It’s a tough comparison, even though the Chevy Camaro ZL1 absolutely shames the Challenger Hellcat in the real world. Both hosts Jonny Lieberman and Jethro Bovingdon find the Challenger Hellcat find there’s just something special about the Hellcat that the Camaro simply doesn’t exude.
On the road to choosing the king of modern muscle cars, the Camaro ZL1 and Hellcat Widebody are put through their paces. The baselines tests prove the Camaro ZL1 is by far the better muscle car, or rather, a sports car. It’s not the first time we’ve heard reviewers allude to the Camaro ZL1 as an American M4. The Chevy will absolutely keep up and even clobber the best from Germany’s M or AMG divisions. Here, it’s quicker in a straight line, outdoes the Challenger on the track and presents itself as the muscle car redefined.
It’s a theme we’ve watched the Camaro team follow since the sixth-generation car debuted. The Camaro has consistently chased lap times and hardcore track packages. It’s a far cry from what the Camaro of yesteryear stood for. Perhaps for better, but maybe for worse in the grand scheme of things.
The Challenger Hellcat, on the other hand, also performs as a modern car should. It turns, stops, puts its power down and more. But, as both hosts say, the Challenger tugs at the heartstrings more. It’s more representative of what the muscle car was decades ago, except it wraps those feelings in a package that performs in every other way yesterday’s muscle cars didn’t.
So, it’s inevitable. The Camaro falls to the Challenger, which simply does a better job at being a muscle car. Or does it? We won’t spoil the final outcome. Watch the full episode at the link here and watch a preview in the video above.