The original seventh-generation Chevrolet Camaro plans as we know it were scrapped. That’s a cold truth that won’t change. However, that’s not to say that there is possibly a new plan for a different kind of seventh-generation Camaro, which could debut sometime after 2023. Speculation of an electric Camaro remains purely speculation at this point, but regardless of what ends up happening, Chevrolet seems to have committed the nameplate of the historic muscle car to racing for the near- to mid-term future. To the point, NASCAR is teasing its “Next Generation” race cars that will debut this week, which will debut on May 5.
Along with the Next Gen Chevrolet Camaro, Ford Performance will also debut its Next Gen Mustang, while Toyota will also pull the sheet off of its race car. The new cars will begin racing in the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season next year.
As for whether or not the Next Gen Chevrolet NASCAR is indeed a Camaro, or if Ford will continue with the Mustang name, the cars were leaked in the buff on Reddit. The image below speaks for itself.
The new race cars will debut in Charlotte, North Carolina, while manufacturers recently completed a round of testing at Martinsville Speedway last week. Specs and elements of the Next Gen Chevrolet Camaro, Next Gen Ford Mustang and Next Gen Toyota Camry will also be announced on May 5. Speculation is that the cars will likely adapt some form of electrification, while the four-speed manual transmission is being swapped out for a six-speed sequential gearbox. Single lug wheels, and independent rear suspension are other notable changes.The engines are also expected to lose their carburetor setup in lieu of fuel injection. NASCAR has long been criticized, perhaps unfairly, for resisting change towards more modern racing technology.
However, this crudeness is cost-effective for race teams, and considering the full-contact melee that Cup Series races can be, the cars can be more easily repaired or replaced in the inevitable event of a crash. The Next Gen Chevrolet Camaro, Next Gen Ford Mustang, and Next Gen Toyota Camry are rumored to have far more expensive operating costs, which seems like a clumsy strategy for a racing series that’s seen it fanbase erode over the past decade.
Reports from Down Under also point to GM using the Chevrolet Camaro name to race in Supercars. Does this point towards the company looking for ways to keep the Camaro around? Hopefully so.