By on May 12, 2016

Camaro Z28 crash

A wing and aero kit really can make a vehicle fly.

The Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 prototype heating up the Nurburgring had all the go-fast bits, but it was a rear brake lockup that caused this test driver to do his best impression of Patrick George.

Bowtie fans have wiped saliva off their keyboards ever since the thinly disguised, next-generation Z/28 showed up at the German track earlier this week. Don’t worry, when the model finally hits showrooms, anti-lock brakes are sure to be on the standard features list.

Yesterday’s accident occurred as the Camaro powered through a pretty routine turn. After exiting the inside of the turn, the vehicle’s driver’s side wheels approach the grass and the brakes are applied.

Instant rear-wheel lockup ensues, pushing the tail out and lining the Camaro up for a date with the wall. Front lockup follows, and Bowtie and Armco consummate their relationship. After the crunch, the Camaro performs the limp of shame back over to the grass.

Photos taken after the crash show damage to the front passenger side, but not as much as you’d expect from the altitude the vehicle attained during the kiss.

Expect the range-topping Camaro to use the beastly supercharged 6.2-liter V8 from the already hot ZL1. That mill cranks out 640 horsepower and 640 pound-feet of torque.

Z28 crash

z28 crash

Z28 crash

z28 crash

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21 Comments on “Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 Mule Passes ‘Jalopnik Test’ on Nurburgring (Video)...”

  • avatar

    Oof. And nice shot at (Redacted).

  • avatar

    I loathe that hideous, worthless Shamaro – nothing but a block of wood whittled out by some amateurs without any design talent.

    I loved watching it go into the wall.

    You’d think that after having the production model of a lesser capability on the road they’d have a simple thing like rear brakes sorted out!

    And when you have to add a JC Whitney childish wing onto a car, you have significant aero design issues that should have been ironed out prior to job one of the lowest kind.

  • avatar


    (Please do not cross-pollinate with anything Jalopnik. Try to keep Bark’s pandering-to-I-am-15-to-20-and-I-own-a-2004-Elantra-but-dismiss-anyone-without-a-supercar-and-have-yet-to-get-laid-WoW-rocks! crowd over there. K thanks)

  • avatar
    Joe Btfsplk

    That wallpaper pattern is hideous anyway. Peel it all off, do something different… then have another go.

  • avatar

    Any racer who hasn’t wrecked on a race track isn’t trying hard enough. Especially if he’s driving a car owned by somebody else.

    • 0 avatar

      These are factory engineers well acquainted with the track already ( or should be ) . GM has a pretty stringent program in place to make sure these guys know how to run fast and evaluate the vehicle. Although it could possibly be a hired helmet in there I doubt it.

      • 0 avatar

        GM “factory engineers” says it all. There’s hacks in every industry, it’s unclear how they got there, but I’m constantly firing pros I’ve hired, when I can do a better hacked-up job myself.

  • avatar

    He fully panicked over nothing. I’m only appalled from learning to drive, way before ABS was in normal cars. I do start to panic too, but my right leg is automatically busy pumping the brakes like a mofo, (ABS or no) long before I can fully access the situation or what to do about it. My 1st accident at 16 went something like this video, minus the mule, plus a diesel Delta 88.

    This guy had plenty of time to let up on the brake and straighten it out, then probably overcorrect and spin out.

  • avatar

    Man I hope GM doesn’t go with the LT4 on the Z/28, yeah it makes great power but handling the heat issues associated with the discharge on the supercharger can spoil the fun real quick. It’s easier when you can stuff a big x huge air to air out in front and keep on going up in size until it looks like a flying radiator going around the track but on the more compact air to water systems favored for thier packaging on OE supercharged applications the engine side of the heat exchanger system gets constrained and as it seems the LT4 has heat soak issues under light track duty ( pulls,gobs of timing to save the engine ) it would seem an NA variant of the LT1 bumped up in some fashion where its,making 500+ hp would be a better choice.

  • avatar

    I’m in the camp that says something either broke, or electronics issue.

    It’s not a place on track where any trained/competent test driver would be on the brakes hard enough to lock up the rears in the first place, even without ABS.

    Do these use an e-diff type setup? wonder if it locked/broke or got a signal in error causing that type of lockup.

    I know things go bad in a hurry, and driver error with ABS switched off is certainly possible.

    • 0 avatar

      Could be just a failure at the rear axle. It appears that he does try to correct before giving up and locking the fronts himself to scrub some speed before impact.

      It’s got to be a failure of some sort though. No competent driver would react to a bit of instability by braking, or braking harder, in that situation, and no competent driver would then try to steer while locking the brakes himself. That’s two very basic mistakes back to back. The correct reaction would happen automatically in a fraction of a second: release brakes, correct instability, reapply brakes. He had enough track ahead of him to do that multiple times and still come to a complete stop in the middle of the track if he wanted.

      The guy also didn’t appear to be flustered after it happened, as you would expect from a novice driver who just got in over his head. He immediately moved out of the way and parked it; calmly, quickly, and safely. He doesn’t appear to be embarrassed or ashamed as he gets out of the car.

      It’s got to be an electronic failure though. A mechanical failure would have almost certainly remained locked after the impact.

      Look what happened to Jack in an M3 in 2011:

      “As I enter the pitlane, however, the BMW goes insane, flashing the dashboard and abruptly braking me to a shrieking, clattering halt without my intervention. I radio for help and the car ends up needing to be restarted a few times before deciding to let go of the brakes. This is, frankly, terrifying. What if the brakes had “grabbed” while I was negotiating the infamous Turn Nine?”

      If a production vehicle can do that, it’s no surprise that a test vehicle could too.

  • avatar

    Anyone else notice that there are at least two cars in the video (or at least two license plates)?

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