Mustang GT500 vs Camaro ZL1 1LE

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Mustang GT500 vs Camaro ZL1 1LE: Calling this a rematch is not logical; however, we’re doing it anyway. The last time of their comparison supercharged Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 against the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 was way back in 2012. Now since the Camaro and Mustang are in the new platforms and make more power, and further both can lap a racetrack faster than their predecessors. During the 2012 test, the Mustang enjoyed a considerable power advantage, however, it was a less expensive and more sophisticated Camaro that took the possession.


Now, the engineers at Ford Performance have come up with the latest ultimate Mustang, the supercharged Ford Mustang Shelby GT500. But Chevy hasn’t been sleeping on the job, and their supercharged 2019 Chevy Camaro ZL1 1LE has been quietly waiting for this fight. Furthermore, get ready for a battle between the quickest and most powerful Camaro and Mustang? Thus, let’s get this rematch.

The Matchup

The tiff between Mustang and Camaro started in 1967, and they have performed about 50 comparison tests including the two muscle cars. However, the numbers have never been this astronomical. Thus, add up the power from their supercharged V-8s and you may get more than 1400 horsepower.

Camaro ZL1 1LE


Besides this, a few years back, the Shelby remains the more powerful and more expensive of the two. The GT500’s 5.2-liter supercharged double-overhead-cam 32-valve V-8 not only revs to 7500 rpm; it produces 760 horsepower at 7300 rpm and 625 lb-ft of torque at 5000 rpm. Moreover, a new seven-speed dual-clutch transmission supplied by Tremec is the only gearbox available. There’s no manual at this time of the round, and while a manual might not be quicker than the dual-clutch, it’d probably be more fun.

Mustang GT500


Chevy’s supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 is down 110 horsepower from the Ford, but its price is also considerably lower. The small-block has half as many valves activated by pushrods a single camshaft tucked into the block. The 6500-rpm redline and 650 horsepower don’t quite light up the spec box like the GT500, but its 650 lb-ft of torque is superior, and it hits at a more accessible 3600 rpm.


Manual-transmission fans do have an easy choice as the Chevy offers a standard six-speed manual, Further, the Camaro’s 10-speed automatic not only offers torque converter, it was developed in partnership with Ford. Furthermore, it’s a version of the unit used in the Ford F-150, Chevy Silverado, and the Mustang GT.

On the Road

With nearly 200 pounds less mass and with a weight distribution closer to 50/50, the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE is just as quick as the Mustang nonetheless less horsepower. At the test track, it beats the GT500 to 60 mph by .2 second, 3.4 seconds versus 3.6. However, Ford’s rear tires eventually hook up, and its horsepower takes responsibility. It then turns the Camaro to 100 mph by .3 second, and by 150 mph the gap is stretched to more than 4.0 seconds.

However, these are muscle cars and it’s the quarter-mile that really matter of fact. In that race, it’s essentially a dead heat. Further, a tire-smoking, fighting-for-traction dead heat, with the Mustang’s 11.4-second run at 132 mph just standing against the Camaro’s time of 11.5 seconds at 124 mph.

At the test track, the Camaro also outstripped the Mustang, with a 1.17-g skidpad performance and stops from 70 mph in 137 feet and from 100 mph in 268 feet. Further, The Mustang is trailing out but not much. Its 1.13-g skidpad performance is impressive considering the fact it carries 56.6 percent of its 4059 pounds over the front wheels. Besides this, It stops from 70 mph in 142 feet and from 100 mph in 279 feet.

Above all, both cars offer the kind of speed better suitable for the track, the Camaro is easier to drive quickly. Further, the fun is more accessible and therefore more easily enjoyable. But the sacrifice for all that stability is comfort while riding. The Mustang’s suspension is al dente, while the Camaro’s is uncooked. It’s like hitting your head on the headliner again stiff. By comparison, a standard Camaro ZL1 with the magnetorheological dampers, useful in the GT500, rides with the pillowy, cloudlike float of a 1976 Eldorado convertible.

The Inside View

Camaro ZL1 1LE


The Camaro comes along with a great interior. Moreover, the ZL1’s cabin is visually prosaic, functionally challenged, and cheap to the touch. Further, there’s too much ugly plastic, including paddle shifters that feel flimsy, and mundane gauges with a pitifully small gear readout. Furthermore, it is a major oversight in a muscle car with 10 ratios in order to keep a track.


But Chevy didn’t get it all wrong. The Camaro’s Recaro seats are more comfortable than the Mustang’s—and the Mustang has outstanding seats. The driving position is spot on. Nonetheless significant discount, the ZL1 was also packed with features not found on our Mustang, including navigation, heated and cooled seats, a heated steering wheel, a back seat, power seats, and further wireless phone charging.

Mustang’s interior


The Mustang’s interior looks feel, and functions better than the Camaro’s, although some editors question the decision to give the GT500 a rotary shifter. Yes, it worked visually in the futuristic cabin of the GT supercar, or a Ford Fusion, but some feel it doesn’t have the right vibe in the Shelby, which reeks of retro both inside and out. Further, its paddle shifters are magnesium.


Besides this, That kind of attention to detail and thoughtful design you may find under Shelby’s hood. With magnesium, strut tower brace follows by carbon-fiber composite panels, and a menacing cobra emblem atop its supercharger, its engine compartment is far more finished and attractive than the Camaro’s, which is unromantically utilitarian. Besides this, Chevy clearly saves some time and money by not dressing the ZL1’s engine room.

The Bottom Line

Mustang GT500 vs Camaro ZL1 1LE: Considering above, these two (Mustang GT500 vs Camaro ZL1 1LE) machines, are keeping the traditional American fire-breathing, rear-drive, front-engine muscle car alive. Further, it’s a commendable feat considering our society continues to accelerate toward autonomy and electrification like a drunken hipster on a rented moped. However, after two days of track testing and some days of driving around the barren desert landscape a winner, a clear winner, of this comparison test, failed to materialize.

Both the Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 and the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE live up to the hype. This may either put a big dumb smile on your face while shredding an expensive set of summer tires in the process. But these are sophisticated cars and there is no doubt. Their ability to turn and stop is only surpassed by their unbridled power and tire-destroying skills. However here we have to pick up the winner and the winner is the Camaro. The biggest advantage is that it’s simply a better value. When it comes to the ride quality, interior design, and its more sophisticated powertrain. Above all, Spend the stack of money saved on gas and Goodyear’s. You’re going to need them.

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