Hennessey unveils the 20th Anniversary HPE650 Supercharged Camaro

Article by Christian A., on October 12, 2011

Hennessey Performance celebrates its 20th anniversary by releasing a batch of limited-edition, supercharged Chevrolet Camaros. Hennessey Performance first became famous for the work it did on Dodge Vipers but now, the firm is creating tuning packages for virtually any type of vehicle. The 20th-anniversary HPE650 Camaros are powered by a supercharged version of the 6.2-liter V-8 engine, which now delivers 655 hp.

Hennessey claims that this car could accelerate to 60 mph in just 3.7 seconds and could run a quarter-mile in 11.7 seconds at a speed of 122 mph. Hennessey credits these figures to the use of a TVS supercharger, a less-limiting exhaust, bigger fuel injectors, a reprogrammed engine computer, new camshafts, and modified cylinder heads.

The Hennessey-tuned Camaro will be available with a manual or automatic transmission. Buyers can also choose between a coupe and a convertible. However, the color scheme is all the same -- black paint with black leather upholstery.

The car’s appearance is improved with the use of 20-inch Hennessey wheels covered with Pirelli P-Zero tires, serial plaques and 20th Anniversary Edition badges, a redesigned engine cover, and a new splitter and side skirts from CarbonAero. Its suspension is lower by one inch below the stock ride height. Coupe models have a starting price of $79,500, while convertibles are priced at $84,500.

Only 20 copies will be built, one for each year of Hennessey Performance’s existence. Each car will come with a specialized, sequential serial number. Hennessey’s HPE650 is powered by a supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 engine.

This follows the basic powertrain formula that’s used on the upcoming Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, which is offered as a convertible just like the HPE650. The factory-baked version delivers 580 hp, but it comes with upgrades such as Brembo brakes and Performance Traction Management. It boasts a Nürburgring lap time of 7:41.27.

While the Chevrolet Camaro already leads its segment, it continues to bring something new with the introduction of the 2011 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible. This latest offering is expected to offer precise quality mixed with driving fun similar to a sports coupe. Mainly this is due to having a top mechanism that is well-tailored plus a body structure that has been enhanced. In terms of configuration, the 2011 Camaro Convertible is the same as the Camaro Coupe.

Powering it will be the direct injection V6 engine with output at 312 horsepower and fuel efficiency at 29 mpg highway. The SS variant though will instead have the 6.2-liter V8 engine with power at 426 horsepower. These two engines are paired with the manual 6-speed transmission but an automatic 6-speed transmission is offered as an option.

With this new model, the company will offer uncompromising driving dynamics much like the coupe but mixed in with excellent refinement. Since the body structure was enhanced, as mentioned previously, it ensures that steering or cowl wheel shake is avoided resulting in a more confident and stronger feel regardless of what the driving conditions may be.

Meanwhile the top comes with a smooth and tailored fit and with the headliner fitted with acoustical form, ensures a quiet ride especially with the top up. Chevrolet’s Vice-President of Marketing Chris Perry said that with the release of the 2011 Camaro Convertible, the company is able to offer its performance and design to a new group of potential customers. Ever since the company revived the Camaro, it has become extremely popular and thus it was expected to not only expand but also advance the product line-up to new directions, he added.

When Chevrolet first released the 2010 Camaro Coupe back in 2009, it gained the market lead in the U.S. in terms of sales for its class. In addition, the company just sold the right to buy one of the first models for $205,000 during the Barrett-Jackson auction, the proceeds of which were all donated to charity.

The company also revealed that while only 100 units of the Neiman Marcus Edition of the 2011 Camaro Convertible, with customized elements, were manufactured and priced at $75,000, it immediately sold out within 3 minutes. Chevrolet will be unveiling the 2011 Camaro Convertible during the 2010 Los Angeles International Auto Show. Production is expected to begin by January with sales to start by February 2011.

Aside from the standard version, Chevrolet will be offering two trim packages, a 1LT/2LT for the V6 and 1SS/2SS for the V8, and it will be priced starting at $30,000 MSRP, which already includes an $850 destination cost. Though nine colors for the exterior will be offered, the top will only come in either tan or black. All models will be equipped with the rear parking assist.

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