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Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Runs a 10-Flat 1/4-mile with the Drag Development Program

The Chevrolet Performance Drag Development Program has turned their attention to the 2017 Camaro ZL1, resulting in a quarter mile time of 10.00 with a long list of fairly standard modifications – all of which could soon be offered through Chevrolet’s aftermarket performance division.

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Chevrolet Performance introduced their Drag Development Program at last year’s SEMA Show and when the program began, the 2016 Camaro SS was the focus of their attention. Since then, the 2017 Camaro ZL1 has hit the market, so for this year’s SEMA Show, the Drag Development Program turned its attention to the factory-supercharged Chevy muscle car – leading to a quarter mile best of 10.00 at 137.78 miles per hour.

Compared to a stock 2017 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 which runs the quarter mile in the mid-11s, the Chevrolet Performance-tuned ZL1 is roughly a second and a half quicker, but how did the Drag Development team get the car down to 10-flat?

Here is a quick rundown of the Camaro ZL1 in the Drag Development Program.

The 10-Second Camaro ZL1
The Chevrolet Performance Drag Development Program Camaro ZL1 started as an average production car, with the supercharged 6.2L LT4 V8, the 10-speed automatic transmission, the dual-mode exhaust system, the Electronic Limited Slip Differential (eLSD) with a 2.85 final drive and the Performance Traction Management system. All of these components will allow the new Camaro ZL1 to blast down the quarter mile in the mid-11 second range, making it the quickest road-going Camaro to date.

The first step was to add more power to the Camaro ZL1, so the Chevrolet Performance team added a set of American Racing long-tube headers, a cold air intake system, a larger throttle body, a smaller supercharger pulley and a tune to run on 110-octane race gas (most of which are Chevrolet Performance concept parts). There is no clear power number associated with this build, but the automaker states that it makes more than 700 horsepower – which is pretty obvious. I would be surprised if it didn’t make closer to 800 horsepower based on the ET and trap speed.

Next, to make the most of that power the Drag Development team upfitted the Camaro ZL1 with a unique calibration for the Magnetic ride control system, the automatic transmission and the eLSD system, as well as adding sticky drag racing tires. This Camaro ZL1 also has a few performance parts which are already on sale from Chevrolet Performance, including a set of solid cradle bushings and a smaller rear braking system – allowing racers to run the 16-inch Weld racing wheels.

Finally, the Drag Development Program added a racing driver’s seat, a 5-point safety harness and an NHRA-approved roll cage.

With all of these upgrades, the Chevrolet Performance Drag Development Program was able to run a 10.00 quarter mile at almost 138 miles per hour and you can watch that run around the 2-minute mark in the video below.

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Rodney Brown (not verified)    December 29, 2019 - 3:27PM

I remember reading this article last year and thought at that time that Chevrolet was going to provide these upgrades for those who were looking to make their ZL1 faster.
I have a 2018 ZL1 looking to make sure the Mustangs stay in my rearview mirror, however, now that the gt 500 is running mid 10's from the factory I guess I will need to source these upgrades elsewhere, It would be great if the Chevrolet Performance Division would offer these upgrades. I may have to get a Mustang...