Your average car company will flip a lid if you bring its shiny new warranty-covered product to a racetrack. Mitsubishi when its owners dared to so much push their new sporting machines in, say, a sporting manner, under competition. Bad vibes ensued. Loyalties were severed. Word gets out about this sort of thing.
Chevrolet might be one of the first manufacturers to actually extend its warranty coverage to track use. That's huge.
The man behind it? Non other than Al Oppenheiser, the Camaro ZL1's chief engineer, a diehard automotive wizard who gives credence to the "gearhead" appellation. "If you're not modifying your car and you take your production car to a track day and you have an issue with one of your parts, it's covered under warranty," he recently told . "We know when somebody changes their ECM calibration and we know if they changed to a cold-air intake, we can tell all that. But driving it as you break it in from the dealership, if you have a half-shaft or whatever, it's covered."
That's right: Go on, take your Camaro to the track, the parking lot, the dragstrip. If you miss a shift weaving through the cones and a conrod punches through the hood at 14,000 RPM (unlikely), then you can luxuriate in the fact that you won't need to sell your firstborn for a moment of self-indulgence. But, there's that caveat—you must resist the temptation of adding more horsepower, swapping out parts, and your beautiful ride must remain factory stock.
The policy applies to all track-oriented Camaros: the V8 SS in particular, as well as the ZL1, the forthcoming Z/28, and the 1LE and both of its available engines. The last ZL1 and Z/28 were also track-covered, so the fact that this policy is trickling down to other performance trims shows a lot of confidence on the part of GM for its sixth-gen Camaro's ability to handle competition.