Skip to main content

Tale of the Tape: 2016 Camaro VS 2015 Mustang

Since the 2016 Chevrolet Camaro was introduced on Detroit’s Belle Isle a few weeks back, the battle between the Camaro and the Ford Mustang has heated up, leading me to put together a short “tale of the tape” piece showing the currently available vitals for these two American muscle cars.


I should start by explaining a few things for those who aren’t clear on what we know so far about the 2016 Chevrolet Camaro. General Motors has offered up a great deal of information, but they haven’t rolled out all of the numbers thus far. Most notably, while we know exactly how much power each engine in the 2016 Camaro lineup we offer, we don’t have the weight figures for any of the new Camaros, so all we can go on there is the fact that GM frequently talks about shaving 200lbs from the new generation.

Also, since the official figures for the 2016 Ford Mustang have not been announced in their entirety, we will use the figures for the 2015 model year Mustang, but we can expect that they will either be the same, or very similar for 2016. Since we have exact weight numbers for the Mustang, but not for the Camaro, I will use the heaviest available weight numbers for the Mustang fastback while using the 2015 model year Camaro weight minus the aforementioned 200lbs.

Finally, there is a long list of other aspects of both cars that will come into play during a real world race, but with so much discussion about how the 2016 Camaro will compete with the 2015 Mustang, I thought that today would be a good time to put together a piece looking at what matters most to the average gearhead.


The Base V6
As has been the case for years, both the 2015 Ford Mustang and the 2016 Chevrolet Camaro rely on a base model V6 engine that balances performance and fuel economy while keeping the purchase price low. For the Mustang, the V6 engine is the least expensive option and I expect that to be the same case with the 2016 Camaro.

The 2015 Ford Mustang with the base V6 engine packs 300 horsepower and 280lb-ft of torque in a vehicle that weighs 3,526lbs. The 2016 Camaro V6 delivers 335 horsepower and 284lb-ft of torque and while there are no official weight figures, we know that the 2015 Camaro V6 weighs 3,719lbs. GM has promised that the new models will cut at least 200lbs, so based on some very simple math, we can estimate that the 2016 V6 Camaro will weigh around 3,519lbs.

In other words, the 2016 Camaro V6 will have more horsepower and more torque while likely having a curb weight in the same range as the V6 Mustang. This gives the Camaro a clear advantage in the battle of the base V6 models.

The 4-Cylinder Battle
First up, both the 2016 Camaro and the 2015 Ford Mustang feature a fuel-friendly turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. Ford’s 2.3L EcoBoost has quickly become a very popular engine option in the 2015 Mustang in the United States and I expect that it will be a smash hit in foreign markets where gas prices are much higher. The turbo-4 Camaro will likely compete in the same markets around the world, so the turbocharged 4-cylinder engine option could play a big role in the global sales race.

The 2015 Ford Mustang EcoBoost packs 310 horsepower and 329lb-ft of torque in a car that weighs just 3,532 pounds. The 2016 Camaro with the turbocharged 2.0L offers 275 horsepower and 295lb-ft of torque and again, since we don’t know the official weight, we have to estimate.

The 2015 Mustang EcoBoost weighs slightly more than the 2015 Mustang V6, likely due to the components included in the turbocharging system. Since the 2016 Camaro shares many of these components, I would guess that the turbo-4 Camaro will weight slightly more than the V6 Camaro and if nothing else, it should have a very similar curb weight to that of the EcoBoost Mustang.

However, weight aside, the EcoBoost Mustang has a massive advantage in both horsepower and torque, which should give the Ford a big advantage over the 2016 Camaro in the battle of the 4-cylinder muscle cars.

The V8 Muscle Cars
If you ask many muscle car fans, the only engines that truly matter in the 2015 Ford Mustang and 2016 Chevrolet Camaro lineup are the powerful V8s. The 2015 Mustang GT features a 5.0L V8 that delivers 435 horsepower and 400lb-ft of torque in a car that weighs 3,729lbs. The 2016 Camaro SS features an LT1 V8 that offers 455 horsepower and 455lb-ft of torque – giving the Chevy a large advantage in power. We know that the 2015 Camaro SS weighed just over 3,900lbs so in cutting 200lbs, the Camaro SS should be in the same general weight range as the Mustang GT.

So, in terms of the Mustang GT and the Camaro SS, the Chevy has a significant overall power advantage and once the official weight of the 2016 Camaro is announced, I expect that the SS will have a serious power-to-weight advantage as well.


Chris Heer (not verified)    June 10, 2015 - 3:51PM

FYI, Chevy said at the unveiling that the t4 would be the base model and the 6 would be the midrange.

Mackey (not verified)    June 11, 2015 - 3:02AM

As has been reported on this site before, the Ecoboost attains those hp / tq figures while using 93 octane gas. It has been reported that there is up to a 15% power reduction if lower octane gas is used.

Tony1991 (not verified)    June 11, 2015 - 3:54AM

Just to clarify a little, if you want a little more info on the weight of the 2016 camaro look at the ats. The ats turbo 4 is almost 50 pounds lighter than the v6 ats. Which the turbo 4 ats weighs around 3360 while the v6 ats is a little over 3400 lbs. But I say take away a few extra lbs, because the camaro isn't going to be as luxurious as the ats. Hence less weight in general.

Matt (not verified)    June 11, 2015 - 12:17PM

You guys must be the only ones that didn't read Chevy's press release. The T4 is the base engine for the Camaro, matching up with the Mustang V6. Everyone else with even a little interest in these cars knows this, but you keep aligning them incorrectly. Figure it out already.

Auto Motive (not verified)    June 11, 2015 - 3:16PM

I am looking down the road at buying new summer cruise car specifically a ZL1, GT500 (if auto is offered) Hellcat Charger and lastly the most expensive the Z06 all for 2017. Why wait??? Options like rear facing bumper cameras, rear view mirror camera option, crash avoidance safety gear and carbon fiber packages that include front and rear spoilers, side rails, hood and full body racing stripes like the Z06. Pricing from well loaded $70-99k. The ZL1 will debut a LT4 from the Z06 pushing the full 650 numbers and the GT500 rumored to have the GT 600hp twin turbo V6 or a new 700 plus hp V8. Last summer cruise car for me since my number is fast approaching. (getting older that is)

Joonte Lee (not verified)    June 12, 2015 - 2:40AM

Wow, what kind of article is this? Seriously, are you just making stuff up to write? Chevy themselves said that the turbo I4 would be the base engine, then the V6 and V8. Also, you write that the straight-four Camaro and Mustang will be similar weights, when the Chevy is running on the much lighter Alpha architecture. Sure, the Mustang might have the ponies, but power-to-weight will probably be similar in both cars with the Camaro coming on top on cornering and efficiency.

Tony1991 (not verified)    June 12, 2015 - 2:33PM

They also released that the new gen v6 is about 300 lbs lighter than the current gen v6 which will put it about 100 lbs lighter than both the v6 and turbo 4 mustang. Which will leave it around 3400 lbs. I'm also guessing the turbo 4 camaro will be about 50 lbs lighter than the v6 camaro which could be around 3350 lbs.

Morgan (not verified)    June 15, 2015 - 9:58PM

In numerous motortrend tests the 10-14 camaro ss vs 11-14 mustang gt, the camaro always beat the mustang in 0-60 (4.3 to 4.4). The 15 mustang gt has been shown to be WORSE than the 14 in acceleration. Early reports showed Ford touting how the 15 would be lighter, but ultimately it was heavier. They shrink it's size, but it's If Chevrolet holds true to the Camaro shaving 200lbs it should spank the Mustang. It updated it's auto while Ford kept the 6 speed. It has wider tires too. I love all cars. I'm a little biased towards the 13-14 mustangs, not the 15. The new camaro looks good in its ss form. I just have to hand it to GM because I think the mustang won't even touch it in the V8 category.