Considering that the ZL1 can beat the $265,000 McLaren 650S Spider on the Nurburgring, it’s still a bargain.
The basic premise of supply and demand is what makes the prospect of cheap horsepower so enticing. A lot of people want mega amounts of thrust in their cars, but not everyone has that kind of money to blow on a vehicle that will spend most of its time either in the garage or commuting to and from work. That’s why cars like the Ford Mustang and Chevy Camaro are so popular, although they aren’t always available to our Aussie cousins. Luckily, Motor comes to us with an answer.
Apparently the large kangaroo-filled nation will soon be able to purchase the 650 horsepower Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 in right-hand drive format…for a price. Chevrolet’s reluctance to build a right-hand drive Camaro and Ford’s stubborn decree that the GT350 won’t move away from left-hand drive construction means that Australia’s gearhead community had to turn attention elsewhere. Specifically to the madhouse that was once the Special Vehicles unit of Holden. But HSV is on its way out and there will be a horsepower void to fill, which the right-hand drive ZL1 can certainly do. The only issue is that the conversion is done by a Melbourne-based tuner named Crossover Car Conversions.
CCC will take care of importing the car from the US, paying all associated taxes, and moving the pedals and steering wheel to the right side of the car. The cost? Expect to write a check for nothing less than $150,000. That might sound like a lot, but consider that when stock, the Camaro ZL1 can beat the McLaren 650S Spider around the Nurburgring, a car that starts with a $115,000 premium over the modified Camaro. To be fair, CCC isn’t gorging itself on the profits either, the bulk of the money goes towards Australia’s ridiculous vehicle taxes. Importing the ZL1 Camaro alone costs $101,409 before the tuners torque a single bolt. The rest of the price is broken down into two parts.
The first $44,000 chunk goes towards the cost of the parts and labor, and another $6,000 is spent solely on the reengineering work for the electric power steering system. That might sound expensive, but it’s worth remembering that this is the unit responsible for reigning in all 650 ponies and 650 lb-ft of torque. In total, the price for a right-hand drive Camaro ZL1 may be more reflective of the price usually commanded by other cars with equally high horsepower outputs, but we still can’t argue with the fact that, unless you’re wealthy, it may suck to be an Australian gearhead at current.