Chevy's ponycar is in need of a game changing update.
Over the weekend, General Motors head honcho Mark Reuss confirmed GM was working on an electric sports car. That's only partially news, as we know the company wants to switch to all EVs soon. But it looks like the company's new Ultium platform will work for low-roof cars, hopefully, like the Camaro EV Reuss was asked about and that we have rendered below.
Reuss noted that no decisions are made lightly at a business the size of GM, and that the company has put real dollars into its plants to modernize them for the coming wave of electric vehicles. He also says he gets that people need an EV to be a primary vehicle and not just a party trick.
"I can't put a year on it, but you've probably heard about the Celestiq, which is a low roof EV. We've been able to flip those battery cells on their sides to get the h-point down and the roofline down," said Reuss. "That car sets up a variant of the Ultium platform. That platform is capable of doing just about everything we want in our portfolio, across every segment."
That Ultium architecture that underpins the GMC Hummer EV and Cadillac Lyriq and can be stretched and shortened when necessary. The Camaro currently shares its Alpha rear-wheel-drive architecture with the CT5 and CT4. The next one could easily continue using Cadillac platforms.
We also know that GM has several Ultium battery packs that would suffice for a sports car. The new GMC Hummer EV will have three output offerings ranging from 625 hp to 1,000 hp, any of which would be lovely in the current-gen Camaro. We don't expect this Camaro to get an electric powertrain. We're probably looking at the next generation or even the following. As long as GM gets it together by 2035, when it promises to be all-electric, the company can keep its word.
In our rendering we took away the gaping maw grille; in its place we put a blocked-off, more EV-style one. We ditched the spoiler on the ZL1 donor car to reduce drag, and kept the lightweight wheels.
We asked Chevy for a comment on an electric Camaro, but, probably because a weekend's worth of phone calls for the PR department, got a predictable response.
"We are not going to engage in the rumor and speculation around this. As we have said, we're committed to an all-electric future and, like the article says, Ultium could support such a vehicle," said a Camaro rep.
A few years ago, Chevy did come up with an EV Camaro, though it was a drag racer. Named the eCOPO Camaro, its guts were swapped out for an 800-volt system and battery giving it 700 hp and a 9-second quarter mile time. COPO means Central Office Production Order, a system put in place by Chevrolet so dealers could order batches of cars or trucks with unique equipment or colors to meet their needs.
So, we know an electric sports car is coming from the General. We can even get close with hp numbers, considering what GM already has in its stable. The only big question that remains is "will it be a Camaro?" Sales numbers haven't been great recently, so the company could always try to bring back another historical name for an EV sports car. Mont-E Carlo anyone? Chevy ChEVelle perhaps? We'll take your best guesses in the comments.