I drove the Chevrolet Camaro after Labor Day. In my mind, autumn is prime convertible season. When every one else is switching gears, a convertible adds a fresh breath of fun.
Without fail, every summer, the obligatory convertible package hits the newsstand. Summer must inspire convertible purchases for dealers. Convertibles are synonymous with beach bags, garden parties and ocean air. Yet, quickly the novelty wears off. In July when the sun beats down, most convertibles can become downright unpleasant, inducing awkward sunburns on scalps and forearms. The insect population that swells in August is no joy in a dropped top. And driving with a top up in summertime is a stifling sensation.But fall is a different story. The air is cool, but not cold. One of the most decadent driving sensation is top down, heat on -- bad for the environment but so cozy. The cozy heated seats on a convertible are perfection.
My toddler son best describes the power of the Camaro: "Rrrrmphrrr.” That’s the tune of the 6.2 liter V8 engine and 426 hp on the manual model I tested. The bass line kicked in with 420 lb ft of torque and we were passing drivers in no time. The effect is head turning particularly in the inferno orange model I drove. We sidled with sizzle, and maneuvered with ease. This is what the Camaro is for - flaunting its performance demon persona.
Yet, what makes the Camaro solid is what happens when the skies darken. I drove the Camaro through a torrential downpour. Ride and handling were sturdy and steady on greasy streetl. There’s also the intangible way the Camaro made me feel while driving. I felt like I was getting away with something wicked. While the cramp interior can be daunting, the space was actually kind of cozy when the weather turned foul. Go figure.
I did have a few gripes with some of the switchery in the model I tested. For one, in order to drop the top, the trunk space has to be cleared out, and at times there seem to be a lemon-like malfunction with the electronic locks. I would shut off the car wait for a few seconds, and then the key fob and trunk release button would work again. I don’t think this issue would occur on every model.