Performance Cars

2019 Chevy Camaro ZL1 1LE adds new 10-speed auto, keeps same ol' face

The rest of the Camaro lineup got a refresh for 2019, but not this guy.

Chevrolet believes the 10-speed automatic could shave whole seconds off the car's Nurburgring time.

Chevrolet

When Chevrolet first introduced the hard-core ZL1 1LE variant of its venerable Camaro, the only available transmission was a six-speed manual. Now, buyers have another option.

Chevrolet announced on Tuesday that the 2019 Camaro ZL1 1LE will be available with either a six-speed manual transmission or a new 10-speed automatic. According to Chevrolet, this quick-shifting gearbox is more than a half-second faster around the automaker's Milford Road Course than the manual variant. It's a $1,595 option on top of the $7,500 1LE package, on top of the ZL1's $64,195 window sticker.

This isn't just an off-the-rack transmission. Chevy calibrated its 10-speed specifically for the ZL1 1LE and its demanding, track-demolishing nature. Other components were adjusted for the new 10-speed, too, including the Multimatic suspension system and the limited-slip differential. The 10-speed ZL1 1LE also has a new transmission oil pan and an additional steering-gear cooling duct.

Otherwise, it's the same ZL1 1LE that debuted last year. Its 6.2-liter supercharged V8 still puts out 650 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque, and the manual variant still offers active rev matching. Its unique wing produces 300 pounds of downforce at 150 miles per hour. It also rocks a set of dive planes (canards) on the front, because canards make everything better.

One thing you might notice is that the ZL1 1LE sports the same face as it did before. Despite almost the entire Camaro lineup moving to a new exterior design for 2019, the ZL1 1LE keeps rockin' the old body. This isn't unheard of -- Ford's Mustang Shelby GT350 never upgraded to a new face when Ford updated the standard Mustang, and the GT500 -- the one that debuted a fortnight ago -- still has the pre-refresh face for some reason.