Seven of Mine: Chevrolet Assimilates Another Cog Into the Camaro

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy

Corvette customers have enjoyed the choice of a seven-speed manual since its introduction in the macho C7. Paired with the Vette’s V8, the 144-pound transmission is made by Tremec and incorporates active rev matching.

Now, California Air Resources Board documents reveal the same TR-6070 transmission may be offered in the 2019 Camaro, in addition to its existing six-speed manual. Resistance is futile: you know you want that extra gear.

Before you think along the lines of the collective and dismiss this as a way to boost CAFE ratings and reduce fleet emissions, we encourage you to think along sportier lines. Tighter gears in the lower half of the ‘box could mean quicker acceleration off the line, something every gearhead can get behind. Hey, I’m being optimistic today.

It is also true that every manufacturer in the world is looking to increase their economies of scale, sharing parts and platforms wherever possible. Currently, the Corvette has exclusive use of the seven-speed; sharing it with its little brother would be good for the company, if not for sibling rivalry.

One thing we can agree on is that engineers did their homework in bringing this gearbox to market. The synchros are one of its unique design features, as its double- and triple-cone rings are a combination of carbon and sintered (tech term for making a solid out of a powder through heat and pressure) bronze cones designed to endure ham-fisted maneuvers while improving shift performance.

Linear bearings lower the friction of the shift rail movements, said to make the shifter feel lighter and more direct. Some Corvette owners may disagree here, having uttered epithets about the imprecise feel between fifth and seventh gears when wailing around a track. Not having firsthand experience in that particular environment with this transmission, I cannot say.

The CARB document, uncovered by AutoGuide, goes on to list M6, M7, and SA8 gearboxes as potential pairings with a 6.2-liter V8 engine. As we’ve learned with the “typo” on Jeep’s filings for the Wrangler, these documents are subject to change. We hope this one doesn’t, though.

The current Camaro SS makes 455 horsepower from its direct-injected 6.2-liter V8, with a choice of a six-speed manual or flappy paddle eight-speed. The supercharged unit in the ZL1 cranks the wick to 650 horses. And, yes, the automatic is a tad faster to sixty in both cars. The seven-speed could also be reserved for an as-yet unnamed new trim.

[Image: General Motors]

Matthew Guy
Matthew Guy

Matthew buys, sells, fixes, & races cars. As a human index of auto & auction knowledge, he is fond of making money and offering loud opinions.

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  • JohnTaurus JohnTaurus on Jan 19, 2018

    Jeri Ryan is still prettier.

    • See 1 previous
    • ClutchCarGo ClutchCarGo on Jan 19, 2018

      @ClutchCarGo But, yes, she's a looker.

  • Vanillasludge Vanillasludge on Jan 21, 2018

    On paper 7 speeds look like an upgrade. In the real world of driving around on the earth I long the simplicity of my old 4spd Capri 5.0. I’m already shifting all the time with 6 gears...too much work. Let the torque do the work.

    • Raph Raph on Jan 21, 2018

      The LT has torque to spare and the M7 is really a triple overdrive transmission. The standard TR6060 and TR6070 share the same gearing through 6th and with the Z51 option TR6070 you get more aggressive gearing. Its not like you cant skip a gear or two in the run up to 4th or 5th (CAGS probably already does this) or beyond since like any modern engine with advanced computer control they are way more tractable compared to their recent (I say recent but if you had an M4 5.0 Capri it was in the early 80's) counterparts.

  • 3-On-The-Tree I don’t think Toyotas going down.
  • ToolGuy Random thoughts (bulleted list because it should work on this page):• Carlos Tavares is a very smart individual.• I get the sense that the western hemisphere portion of Stellantis was even more messed up than he originally believed (I have no data), which is why the plan (old plan, original plan) has taken longer than expected (longer than I expected).• All the OEMs who have taken a serious look at what is happening with EVs in China have had to take a step back and reassess (oversimplification: they were thinking mostly business-as-usual with some tweaks here and there, and now realize they have bigger issues, much bigger, really big).• You (dear TTAC reader) aren't ready to hear this yet, but the EV thing is a tsunami (the thing has already done the thing, just hasn't reached you yet). I hesitate to even tell you, but it is the truth.
  • ToolGuy ¶ I have kicked around doing an engine rebuild at some point (I never have on an automobile); right now my interest level in that is pretty low, say 2/5.¶ It could be interesting to do an engine swap at some point (also haven't done that), call that 2/5 as well.¶ Building a kit car would be interesting but a big commitment, let's say 1/5 realistically.¶ Frame-up restoration, very little interest, 1/5.¶ I have repainted a vehicle (down to bare metal) and that was interesting/engaging (didn't have the right facilities, but made it work, sort of lol).¶ Taking a vehicle which I like where the ICE has given out and converting it to EV sounds engaging and appealing. Would not do it anytime soon, maybe 3 to 5 years out. Current interest level 4/5.¶ Building my own car (from scratch) would have some significant hurdles. Unless I started my own car company, which might involve other hurdles. 😉
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  • ToolGuy Those of you who aren't listening to the TTAC Podcast, you really don't know what you are missing.