2018 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE sets a Stunning Nürburgring Record Lap Time
When the 2018 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE was introduced earlier this year, it was immediately expected that the 1LE version would get around the famed Nürburgring Nordschleife. The “normal” ZL1 set the American muscle car record with a time of 7:29.60 in October of 2016 and since then, it has been speculated that the ZL1 1LE would eclipse that time by at least 4-5 seconds.
It turns out that those estimates were way off, as the 2018 Camaro ZL1 1LE has beaten the ZL1 by a whopping 13.56 seconds and in doing so, it has set the record for the best time by an American muscle car but more impressively – the Camaro ZL1 1LE has turned in the second fastest American car at the Ring ever. In fact, the Chevrolet Corvette hasn’t turned in an official lap time better than the new ZL1 1LE.
“With chassis adjustability unlike any vehicle in its peer group, the Camaro ZL1 1LE challenges supercars from around the world regardless of cost, configuration or propulsion system,” said Al Oppenheiser, Camaro chief engineer. “To make up more than a second per mile on the Nordschleife compared to the ZL1 automatic is a dramatic improvement and speaks to the 1LE’s enhanced track features.”
Camaro ZL1 1LE at The Ring
The 2018 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE turned in an official lap time on the 12.9 mile Nürburgring Nordschleife of 7:16.04. With a time range of 7 minutes and 16.04 seconds, the newest Camaro is 13.56 seconds faster than the 2017 Camaro ZL1 while being more than 21 seconds faster than the 5th generation Camaro Z28 (which was billed at that time as the most track capable Camaro ever).
More impressively, that time of 7:16.04 makes the 2018 Camaro ZL1 1LE 3.59 seconds faster than the C6 Corvette ZR1, which had long held the record for the fastest General Motors vehicle to lap the Nürburgring. The only American car which has ever turned in a faster Nürburgring Nordschleife lap time is the Dodge Viper ACR, which ran a 7:12.13 lap back in 2011.
American cars aside, the 2018 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE has beaten a long list of incredible supercars. For example, the ZL1 1LE lap time makes it almost 2 seconds faster than the 2017 Porsche 911 GT3, 5 seconds faster than the 2016 Ferrari 488 GTB, 12 seconds faster than the 2016 Lamborghini Huracan and 21 seconds faster than the BMW M4 GTS…to name a few.
So, as expected, the 2018 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE is the quickest American muscle car to ever lap the Nürburgring Nordschleife, but what we didn’t expect was for the new Camaro to be faster than all but one American car on the list of The Ring’s best lap times.
“The harder you push the Camaro ZL1 1LE, the more it rewards you on the track,” said Bill Wise, Camaro ride and handling engineer and the driver of the hot lap. “It offers total control, with the confidence that it will deliver lap after lap.”
The video below shows the record run in high resolution, so crank up your speakers and enjoy 7 minutes of the Camaro ZL1 1LE dominating the world’s toughest road course.