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Old 05-13-2013, 08:37 AM   #1
jwfisher
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2016 Camaro versus 2015 Mustang - on spreadsheets

With all the discussion about the upcoming next generations of the Mustang and Camaro, I decided to put what we know in a spreadsheet, and then take it to the next step.

I called it "educated extrapolation" because we know certain things about the 2015 Mustang and 2016 Camaro. In the case of the Ford there has been a degree of discussion of it from Ford (versus rumor), we have seen the engineering mules, and because as a member of the press I've been seeing Ford do their thing for the past few generations of the Mustang.

And I've done the same thing for the Camaro. We know the Camaro will be based on the 100% brand new "Alpha" platform (currently used by the Cadillac ATS and 2014 CTS) - so unless Chevy makes another over-sized decision out of the great new platform, we could have a base Camaro weight of as little as 3275 pounds for the base 4-cylinder turbo model. we won't know the size for sure until we see a mule, but because of the weight loss directive and because the new platform is the ATS, we know the general size of the Camaro will be somewhat smaller and considerably lighter.

And since the LT1 has now become the base corporate V-8, that means the 450 HP base V-8 Camaro will pull only 7.74 pounds per HP. That's astounding. And should be sobering to Ford engineers.

Even more so going forward into the future, it's not the ultimate HP number that matters, it's the pounds-per-HP. And the required fuel economy, working in increments towards that 54.4 CAFE corporate average by 2025. The LT1 makes it's contribution to that with state-of-the-art direct injection and cylinder deactivation.

And right now Ford has no direct answer to the latest GM engine assault, except to take every single pound possible out of the retreaded S550 platform. And before somebody quotes numbers from an upscale Mustang that is paying licensing fees to a dead icon from the 60s, remember that this is the base V-8 car that we are talking about. Not yet the higher-up models.

Here's the link to my post and the spreadsheet of Camaro specs: http://www.drivingenthusiast.net/sec-blog/?p=15925. And the link to my spreadsheet of the 2015 Mustang: http://www.drivingenthusiast.net/sec-blog/?p=13283. Read the text first for my full explanation.

And in both cases, I've added the current cars to the spreadsheet for purposes of comparison. And in the case of the Camaro, I've added the ATS specs to it, since we know the Camaro will use that platform.
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Old 05-13-2013, 09:06 AM   #2
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First, welcome to Camaro5.

I think it's way too early to extrapolate weight and power figures today with so many unknowns to be solved. I have a hard time believing any base Camaro to be in the 32XXlb range. The ATS with 3.6L is nearly 3500lbs. I suspect the V8 Camaro will be even more. As for HP we haven't even seen real world numbers from the LT1 yet and I suspect it will be slightly down from the C7 implementation as the LS3 is.
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Old 05-13-2013, 09:14 AM   #3
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When we see a mule, we'll know for sure. But look at the base weight of a ATS, imagine a 2-door ATS, take out some weight for typical Caddy-type soundproofing and luxury options, and you have it. And then there is the 15% weight reduction mandate.
As for the 450 HP, that's still an estimate for the C7. The Camaro will be less, if for no other reason than a longer exhaust system. But there will still be more HP, and there will still be a weight loss. The future is very bright...
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Old 05-13-2013, 11:29 AM   #4
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The following info came from gmauthority dated 5-13 about the new CTS and ATS alpha platform...some food for thought about comparing architectures...and where the '16 Camaro may fall in at since it's on alpha.

"Meanwhile, the use of aluminum contributes to a relatively light base curb weight of 3,600 pounds — 200 pounds lighter than a BMW 528i, and among the lightest vehicles in the midsize luxury sedan segment.
Compared to the 2013 CTS, the all-new 2014 CTS saves weight in the following categories:
  • 13.1 pounds by utilizing aluminum over steel bumpers.
  • 55 pounds by replacing the steel door panels with aluminum ones.
  • 14 pounds by making front strut towers of cast aluminum compared with steel used in current CTS.
  • 7.2 pounds from the IP structure, where extruded and stamped aluminum replaced cast magnesium.
  • 36.5 pounds by using extruded and cast aluminum vs. a steel powertrain cradle on the current model."
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Old 05-13-2013, 11:43 AM   #5
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Exactly - and that's the for CTS, a much bigger product on Alpha. When the Camaro becomes an Alpha, this is how it will loose that weight. And all the parts that would otherwise be too expensive for the Camaro pricepoint, such as the aluminum powertrain cradle, are "free" thanks to sharing of such components across the platform.
The Alpha platform was developed with a "gram strategy", where each part was carefully examined and optimized. Even bolts that can be smaller, without giving up the strength called for by their purpose, were sized specifically for the job. And because Alpha is a brand new platform, each component's attributes could be measured against the whole, and contribute to improving the whole.
You can't do that kind of work on an existing platform. As an example the work done to upgrade the Zeta platform in Australia for the new Holden Commodore couldn't achieve these types of results.
So it's perfectly feasible that the next Camaro could drop several hundred pounds, while significantly improving structural integrity. This will translate into a considerably improved HP to weight ratio, better fuel economy, better safety, and a better yet platform for further models and modifications by owners.
We'll have to see what the overall size of the car will be, once spy photos start showing up. But the potential of Alpha is huge and it's there for the taking.
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Old 05-13-2013, 12:10 PM   #6
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Nice blog, well thought out!
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Old 05-13-2013, 12:43 PM   #7
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The Alpha platform is fantastic starting point. It would be cool to see a 4-cyl model executed properly on a light weight chassis. The V-8 model should be a 4 seat Corvette IMO, with enough specific components to make it nearly a different car similar to the ATS/CTS difference. The SS should start to compete against the M3, but as an American interpretation with NA V-8 and manual trans.
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Old 05-13-2013, 01:27 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by NVmyZL1 View Post
If he Alpha-based Camaro ends up under 3500lbs, in any trim level, I'll be amazed and surprised.
I'd imagine the base Camaro will be well under 3500 with the top optioned Camaro probably around 3500 and some change.
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Old 05-13-2013, 02:37 PM   #9
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I'd imagine the base Camaro will be well under 3500 with the top optioned Camaro probably around 3500 and some change.
Agree 100%.

If the Alpha short wheel base platform is used (what the ATS rides on) I'd fully expect a turbo 4 version to come in UNDER 3,400 lbs...maybe even a hair under 3,300 as the OP says. If the base is the V6, then I'd expect a weight of around 3,400, give or take 50 lbs. A V8 model would be 3,500 +.

If the Alpha long wheel base is used (which the new CTS rides on) then I'd add 75 to 100 lbs or so on top of all my above figures.

I really don't see how anyone can say they don't expect any version of the next Camaro to be under 3,500 lbs. There are so many cars out there today, family sedans even that weigh less than that. The Alpha platform is light, and on top of that GM had made it a priority to cut more weight out of future products where they can. We are tired of heavy fat GM cars. Lets get the weight down to an acceptable level!

We don't really need a 500HP SS. All we really need is a version that weighs about 300 lbs less than the current car does. Even with the same power, the performance would kill the current car. Now throw the new LT1 in it, with all that extra TQ it has...the performance will dominate the current SS.

At 3,550 lbs, with 450 HP, that comes to 7.89 lbs per HP. Well under the magical 8lbs per HP that many people tend to talk about.

In my opinion, performance should not be a concern for the next gen Camaro. All I'm worried about at this point is if GM can get the LOOK right! If they nail that, the car will be another huge success.
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Old 05-13-2013, 07:10 PM   #10
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^i'd be very surprised because the body is bigger than a 4th gen and those weigh 3500lbs
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Old 05-13-2013, 07:25 PM   #11
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Agree 100%.

If the Alpha short wheel base platform is used (what the ATS rides on) I'd fully expect a turbo 4 version to come in UNDER 3,400 lbs...maybe even a hair under 3,300 as the OP says. If the base is the V6, then I'd expect a weight of around 3,400, give or take 50 lbs. A V8 model would be 3,500 +.

If the Alpha long wheel base is used (which the new CTS rides on) then I'd add 75 to 100 lbs or so on top of all my above figures.

I really don't see how anyone can say they don't expect any version of the next Camaro to be under 3,500 lbs. There are so many cars out there today, family sedans even that weigh less than that. The Alpha platform is light, and on top of that GM had made it a priority to cut more weight out of future products where they can. We are tired of heavy fat GM cars. Lets get the weight down to an acceptable level!

We don't really need a 500HP SS. All we really need is a version that weighs about 300 lbs less than the current car does. Even with the same power, the performance would kill the current car. Now throw the new LT1 in it, with all that extra TQ it has...the performance will dominate the current SS.

At 3,550 lbs, with 450 HP, that comes to 7.89 lbs per HP. Well under the magical 8lbs per HP that many people tend to talk about.

In my opinion, performance should not be a concern for the next gen Camaro. All I'm worried about at this point is if GM can get the LOOK right! If they nail that, the car will be another huge success.
Very true! A new platform will have it's faults, so great looks always come in handy. This was proven with the 2010-11 SS Camaro, because it drives like a tank compared to its competitors, but still managed to outsell them...
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Old 05-13-2013, 08:35 PM   #12
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Very true! A new platform will have it's faults
Except that it will already be on the road in many tens of thousands by the time it is used for the Camaro. A shared platform is a huge benefit to engineering testing and product quality.
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Old 05-13-2013, 08:47 PM   #13
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Good point!
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:18 AM   #14
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Very well written and very informative based on whats out there.

Only thing I noticed was the way you wrote it in the blog you made it sound as if Ford did nothing to the Mustang engine from 1996 to 2011, which is untrue.

the SN-95 mustangs in 96-97 used a 4.6 2V rated at 215HP, this was then revised in 98 to bump it to and impressive 225 lol.

in 1999 with the "New Edge" refresh the 4.6 2V was revised again to see an increase to 260HP. The way its written in the blog makes it seem as if Ford continued to use this 4.6 from 1996 to 2011 before the 5.0

The 2005 Mustang saw the introduction of the 3V 4.6 wich was rated at 300HP. When the resfresh happened the 3V was increased to 315HP. Then in 2011 the 5.0 was released at 412 then raised to 420.

You predicted that Ford will add direct injection and some tweaking to the 5.0 and increase HP for teh next gen which looking at their history is pretty much spot on.
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:37 AM   #15
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Thanks for the complement! We'll know a heckuva lot more once we get a good spy pic and see what general size the car is becoming. I expect there is a chopped-up ATS in 2-foor form somewhere inside GM HQ, with some big flares tacked on, that is serving as a mule for the next-gen. And if there isn't, there needs to be later this year if the 2016 date is to be made.

All the 4.6 engines are essentially the same... in my mind they were behind the curve of the market and of what could have been done (there are similar V-8s from European and Japanese manufacturers, for example, that were moving steadily along at a faster pace). The truck 4.6 was especially behind the times. Even the cop car 4.6 kept to a very low output. The complete replacement with the 5.0 was overdue, a job well done. So something was wrong there, maybe a program that advanced and was then cancelled (as was the big block BOSS program, then restarted but only with a truck SOHC engine and not the Mustang DOHC 7 liter), either lack of leadership and or lack of funds. Certainly not engineering ability.
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:45 AM   #16
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Thanks for the complement! We'll know a heckuva lot more once we get a good spy pic and see what general size the car is becoming. I expect there is a chopped-up ATS in 2-foor form somewhere inside GM HQ, with some big flares tacked on, that is serving as a mule for the next-gen. And if there isn't, there needs to be later this year if the 2016 date is to be made.

All the 4.6 engines are essentially the same... in my mind they were behind the curve of the market and of what could have been done (there are similar V-8s from European and Japanese manufacturers, for example, that were moving steadily along at a faster pace). The truck 4.6 was especially behind the times. Even the cop car 4.6 kept to a very low output. The complete replacement with the 5.0 was overdue, a job well done. So something was wrong there, maybe a program that advanced and was then cancelled (as was the big block BOSS program, then restarted but only with a truck SOHC engine and not the Mustang DOHC 7 liter), either lack of leadership and or lack of funds. Certainly not engineering ability.
I agree they were basically the same from 96-98 but the heads and intake and some other stuff changed, the 3V was pretty different as well, But either way thats nit picking lol. I was simply just saying the way it read to me, made it seem as if you were suggesting that Ford did nothing engine wise from 96 to 2011. Thats all.

But seriously these are great blogs. Very informative and pretty much spot on
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:50 AM   #17
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I might be a little cynical about them... I expected more progress. The 300HP 3-valve was still 100+ HP behind the base V-8 in the Camaro when it came out a few years later. And most 4.6s have over-heating issues if driven aggressively on the track... it took Ford all the way until the Boss302 to build a car that would survive an aggressive 30 minutes on track. Even Ford's own Ford GT blew it's coolant repeatedly at Ford's own SVT on-track events. No excuse for that (I was there, and their own engineers complained about how they had even rebuilt the entire system and it still didnt' work).

But, back to Camaros. Can we get this thread made sticky so that I can keep it updated as we start to find out more information in the coming year?
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Old 05-14-2013, 02:07 PM   #18
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I might be a little cynical about them... I expected more progress. The 300HP 3-valve was still 100+ HP behind the base V-8 in the Camaro when it came out a few years later. And most 4.6s have over-heating issues if driven aggressively on the track... it took Ford all the way until the Boss302 to build a car that would survive an aggressive 30 minutes on track. Even Ford's own Ford GT blew it's coolant repeatedly at Ford's own SVT on-track events. No excuse for that (I was there, and their own engineers complained about how they had even rebuilt the entire system and it still didnt' work).

But, back to Camaros. Can we get this thread made sticky so that I can keep it updated as we start to find out more information in the coming year?
True but the 3v was 4 years old by the time the camaro came out, next model year they responded.

But back on topic keep up the good work
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