Camaro ZL1 vs Sutton Mustang: 1600bhp mega-muscular showdown

There are two types of suspensions available on the ZL1: standard magnetic shocks or fancy DSSV (dynamic suspension spool valve) shocks from motorsport firm (and Ford GT manufacturer) Multimatic. Gary’s car has the magnetic shocks, which would be cooler than the DSSV’s, so god knows how tightly controlled the ZL1 is with those, as it’s already pretty strong and responsive even with those. It’s a hardcore car.

Likewise in terms of straight line speed. With its automatic gearbox and horsepower starting at just seven, you might expect it to feel positively wimpy compared to the Mustang. Not at all: they’re both sensational, giggling, brilliantly fast, similar in thrill and pace but different in character.

They come to the same end from different starting points, and both are unmistakably muscular. By doing things his own way, Gary was able to save money compared to the more corporate route. He thinks that, all in all, you can just take the dollar price of the car and the components and, by the time they’re here, call it pounds. He spent around £ 75,000 on his ZL1, compared to “from £ 115,000” for the CS850.

I am not looking for a winner in this test. We don’t all have the time or energy that Gary has, but I like the method. It is clear that he has devoted a lot of time and love to his Camaro, making it look and feel it. The CS850 feels less individual which is a weird thing to say about a Mustang considering they’re rare and special in the UK in the first place, even before they get any bespoke modifications. and 850 hp. And it’s a very complete, very competent, well-balanced package: a good product.

If that was my choice, I could more easily imagine my car’s hood open, outside a large garage on a warm summer evening, with a bunch of my own tools lying on the fender with the golden sun warming my face, happy so envious of milder winters and larger spaces.

Gary Handa’s modified Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

Price £ 75,000 (estimate) Motor V8, 6162cc, supercharged, gasoline Power 770bhp Couple 737lb ft Gearbox 10-speed automatic Unloaded weight 1760kg 0-62 mph 3.5sec (estimated) Top speed 180 mph (estimated) Economy 20 mpg (estimated)

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