SEMA 2011

Video: Chevrolet COPO Camaro Concept Unveiling at SEMA

Chevrolet is evoking the spirit of special-order models for Stock Eliminator competition with the COPO Camaro Concept.

There's not a doubt that GM is serious about its star muscle car. Chevrolet has just unveiled their latest Camaro concept for this year's SEMA show, beginning today in Las Vegas. Seen rolling out of the transporter truck in Vegas, the COPO Camaro is designed to the specifications for NHRA Stock Eliminator drag racing competition and is "proof for what a Chevrolet Stock Eliminator entry could look like," according to Jim Campbell, GM U.S. VP of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports.

He further added that it's a "clear indication that Chevrolet intends to homologate the Camaro for sportsman drag racing."

The COPO concept has been designed to handle more than one engine option, including the naturally aspirated 427 7.0-liter V8, which has the same displacement as the original 1969 COPO Camaro. It can also handle a supercharged 327 5.3-liter V8. Other mechanical changes include a conversion from the standard Camaro's independent rear axle to a solid axle along with a full chrome moly roll cage. It's also been engineered to handle a variety of transmissions, including a Powerglide two-speed auto, a three-speed auto, or a five-speed manual.

It also features a high-rise cowl-induction hood, a custom aeromotive fuel system, coil-over front suspension, lightweight COPO-specific racing wheels, and a lightweight racing brakes system. The interior has also been simplified, with most sound deadening, power accessories, and the rear seat having been deleted. In their place, Chevrolet has added racing buckets seats, a safety harness for the driver, a competition floor shifter, and special performance gauges. The story of the COPO legacy dates back to the sixties.

An acronym for Central Office Production Order, the office was originally used for fleet orders of trucks and company-owned cars, but was soon altered by performance-enthusiast dealers to order cars with larger engines than were normally available in regular production models. Within a short period of time afterwards, COPO Camaros put Chevrolet at the top of many extremely competitive motorsports.

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