The ongoing chip crisis is the most likely culprit.
While it isn't as popular as strong-selling rivals from Ford and Dodge, the Chevrolet Camaro is still a great muscle car. Powered by a supercharged 6.2-liter V8, the range-topping 650-horsepower ZL1 can rocket from 0 to 60 mph in a mere 3.5 seconds when equipped with the paddle-shift automatic transmission.
Dispelling notions that muscle cars are only good on straight roads, the powerful ZL1 1LE is rather nifty through the bends, as evidenced by its astonishing lap time of 7:16.04 around the Nürburgring. But Camaro-owning track day aficionados may be disappointed to learn of a recent omission being made to the Chevy's options list. GM Authority has recently reported that the Performance Data Recorder (PDR) system for 2022 Camaro SS and ZL1 models will no longer be available to order soon.
Developed by Cosworth, PDR allows owners to record spirited driving experiences and add telemetry and driving data into the clip. Through GPS, PDR can also map a racetrack, which is handy for keen drivers who want to record lap times and analyze the footage and data at a later date.
While it remains unclear as to whether General Motors will bring the option back for the Camaro, the conglomerate will prioritize any stock it currently has for existing orders that have been processed and sold by Chevrolet dealerships. The reason behind the option omission is unknown, but this is likely down to the semiconductor chip crisis which has wreaked havoc across the automotive industry. Previously, GM has had to drop features from several Cadillac and Chevrolet models.
As a result, General Motors has entered into several strategic partnerships with various chip suppliers. President Mark Reuss noted at the time that he sees "semiconductor requirements more than doubling over the next several years." This forward-thinking collaboration may not pay off immediately but certainly will prove beneficial down the line as the brand pivots toward electromobility.
With the production of 2023 Camaros expected to begin at the start of June, the optional extra will hopefully make a return with the new model year. While it's unlikely that GM's muscle car will survive in its current configuration, reports suggest the nameplate may live on as a pure electric car to bolster GM's ever-growing range of electric vehicles, such as the Silverado EV and Cadillac Lyriq. If this is true, we sure will miss the iconic muscle car soundtrack.