Top 5 Track Monsters in New York

Track Car

The Chevy Camaro, SRT Viper, Ford Mustang, Jaguar XKR-S and Porsche 911 may be pretty fast on their own, but each was unveiled in even more hard-core form at the New York Auto Show this year.

This year’s New York Auto Show was packed with plenty of lust-worthy machinery of all shapes and sizes, but few were as exciting as the track-focused sportscars that made their public debuts at the Javitz Center this year. Each of these debuts are based on existing sportscars, but upgraded to the extreme to make for some very serious muscle machines that you can drive to the track, lap all day and night and then drive home. (Oh, and don’t worry – we’ve got the super-sedans covered in another round-up to follow tomorrow.)

Perhaps the biggest surprise came from Chevrolet, which brought back the Camaro Z/28 at the New York show this year for its most extreme muscle car yet. While the ZL1 may be the most powerful in the Camaro range (thanks to its supercharged 6.2-liter V8), the new Z/28 shoehorns in the 7.0-liter LS7 V8, naturally aspirated, into a lightened, stiffened chassis that weighs 300 lbs less than the ZL1 while upgrading the aero components for even more downforce. The result is a Camaro that's three seconds per lap faster around the track than the ZL1. Pricing and exact specifications, however, have yet to be announced.

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The Z/28 may have been the biggest surprise, but the most hard-core track machine at the New York show this year was the Track Attack version of the SRT Viper. Revealed a week before the show opened, the Viper TA is the successor to the Viper ACR and SRT’s answer to the Corvette ZR1 that beat the existing Viper GTS around Laguna Seca. It’s got upgraded Brembo brakes, carbon-fiber components, lightweight wheels wrapped in Pirelli PZero Corsa tires and more. Only 33 examples will be made, all of them in this unique shade of orange. Not for the faint of heart, in other words.

Ford wasn’t about to let GM and Chrysler have all the fun, and while the new Shelby 1000 may not be focused specifically for the track, per se, the way the Boss 302 is, its 1,200 horsepower mean it’s not exactly a daily driver, either. Eclipsing the 662-horsepower GT500 and the 850hp Super Snake, the latest Shelby 1000 upgrades the 5.8-liter supercharged V8 to Bugatti levels of power. To keep it planted on the track, Shelby also gave this ultimate Mustang a fully adjustable suspension and upgraded brakes. Just how drivers are expected to channel all that power to the road through just the rear wheels, though, is entirely beyond us.

In addition to the new XJR, Jaguar also arrived in Manhattan this year with the most extreme XK to date. The XKR-S GT packs the same 550-horsepower 5.0-liter supercharged V8 as the existing XKR-S (not to mention the aforementioned XJR and the XFR-S sedans), but upgrades with revised suspension, brakes, rolling stock, aero and more to make us forget that Jaguar ever had to play second fiddle to Aston Martin. It’s the first roadgoing Jaguar to use carbon-ceramic brakes, and also features adjustable dampers and active exhaust system, but the price tag jumps to $174,000 for each of the 30 units that will reach North America.

This last track-focused sportscar may have already been unveiled before the doors opened at the Javitz Center last week (having premiered at the Geneva show last month), but the new Porsche 911 GT3 came to New York to mark its North American debut. Priced at $130,400, the new GT3 packs a naturally-aspirated 3.8-liter flat-six to drive 475 horsepower to the steerable rear wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. Both the gearbox and steering system are GT3 firsts, helping the most hard-core 991-generation Porsche yet hit 60 in 3.3 seconds and top out at 195 mph.

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