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Old 01-26-2011, 11:02 AM   #1
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Motor Trend: Camaro SS Convertible vs. Mustang GT Convertible

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Comparison: 2011 Chevrolet Camaro SS Convertible vs. 2011 Ford Mustang GT Convertible

Dancing Naked in the Rain
January 26, 2011
/ By Jonny Lieberman
/ Photography by Evan Klein


From http://www.motortrend.com/roadtests/...son/index.html

What we have here is some Alanis Morissette-style irony. No, not ra-ay-ain on your wedding day. Rather, it's the one week when you have a pair of RWD, manny-trannied, V-8 powered, 400-plus horsepower convertible ponycars and Southern California decides to experience the "Storm of the Decade." Did I mention both cars had summer tires? Unlike Alanis's song, ironic isn't the word we'd use, and we can't print the one we would. But like Hunter S. Thompson alluded to, we're here to cover the story. Reviewing convertibles with the sun shining (so to speak) is sine qua non. Knowing that we simply had to remove the roofs despite the inclement weather, we donned full rain gear, dropped them tops and drove the new Camaro SS Convertible and Mustang GT Convertible in the pouring rain. The whole ordeal is a great lesson in making lemonade out of flash floods and mudslides. Besides, can you think of anything more fun than flinging these two mamma-jammas around in the wet while dressed up like the Gorton's Fisherman? Neither could we.

We lived with these two ragtops for a week in bizarre-for-Southern California torrential rain, and are shocked to report that both are livable, real-world propositions -- even with cats and dogs falling all around you. Put another way, these are not your father's ponycars. They did not hydroplane off the road at the first hint of a powerful right foot, an especially impressive feat considering just how much water came down (the Los Angeles Times tells us about an inch per hour during the worst of it). Let's not forget how powerful these headless beasts are. The 5.0 'Stang's 412 hard-revving horses combined with 390 angry pound-feet of torque are slightly bested by 426 macadam-thumping ponies and 420 lb-ft of smoky torque in the 6.2-liter Chevy. Back in the heavily fetishized days of yore, that much mechanical motivation coupled to poor brakes, flexible bodies, and primitive horse and buggy-style suspensions spelled disaster. Not so these days.

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So not so, that associate online editor Scott Evans and I headed up to the snaking back roads of Malibu to put these anachronisms through their proper paces. Sadly, if not predictably, the hills above Malibu -- home to some of this country's best driving loops -- had already received 12 inches of rain. And unbeknownst to us, CalTrans was in the process of repaving Malibu Canyon Road and had removed the top layer of asphalt. As the years roll by you learn that certain stereotypes are true. Like the one about Californians not being able to drive in rain. That axiom, and the fact that the road surface was essentially a bunch of slick pebbles, kept our speeds down to around 30 mph for the first 15 miles. Not exactly the best way to conduct a convertible sports car comparison test. However, the second we turned left onto Mulholland, well, our fortunes dramatically improved.

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Suddenly, and even in the slippery stuff, Evans and I found ourselves on an ideal road with two excellent automobiles. Both cars are fast (obviously), but each was able to handle the slick twists and turns. We here at Motor Trend have long been trumpeting the fact that the new Mustang GT is just as good as the best from Europe (see America's M3? October 2010). As such, we weren't surprised in the slightest that the soft-top version proved to be a proper back-road burner of a sports car. Does its nose still dive like the hardtop when you slam on the brakes? Oh yes, even more so. But hey, convertibles are for cruising, right? We were quite surprised by the headless Camaro's agility and prowess in the canyons. With that big bastard of an LS3 V-8, straight-line performance has never been an issue, but the left and right stuff continually left us wanting. Why? Near catastrophic understeer. Listen, the convertible still sports plenty of understeer (especially when compared to the Mustang), but it's somehow more manageable than the coupe.

Continued at Motor Trend - http://www.motortrend.com/roadtests/...son/index.html
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:09 PM   #2
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Ouch...not much they liked I guess. I'm getting tired of reading about water leakage, getting worried. Better have it fixed on our production cars!
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:28 PM   #3
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I wouldn't worry. There are many test cars running around and I'm sure if there was a major flaw they would have caught it by now. The mags are gonna side with the Mustang. That's old news. Doesn't change the fact that the Camaro is a better looking car and people are buying more of them.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:35 PM   #4
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I do not understand their beef with the steering wheel and shifter. Not at all...
And what's worse is they bring it up in every 'review'...get over it already.


EDIT:....on another note. GM never lets testers take out sub-par builds without making it obvious as all heck...they should have kept to that rule.

EDIT 2: I stopped reading after about the third paragraph through the Mustang...these guys never fail to disappoint me......"review", my ass.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:39 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragoneye View Post
I do not understand their beef with the steering wheel and shifter. Not at all...
And what's worse is they bring it up in every 'review'...get over it already.


EDIT:....on another note. GM never lets testers take out sub-par builds without making it obvious as all heck...they should have kept to that rule.

EDIT 2: I stopped reading after about the third paragraph through the Mustang...these guys never fail to disappoint me......"review", my ass.


lol +1
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:42 PM   #6
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I guess it doesn't matter what Motortrend writes as long as the camaro keeps out selling the mustang. It just goes to show the love for a certain brand or model seems to out weigh quality and performance when it comes to cars.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:44 PM   #7
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I guess it doesn't matter what Motortrend writes as long as the camaro keeps out selling the mustang. It just goes to show the love for a certain brand or model seems to out weigh quality and performance when it comes to cars.
I think that could hold true for MotorTrend's writers as well, in the opposite sense with which I think you meant that comment.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:48 PM   #8
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Lots of convertibles seem to have leakage problems. Convertibles look cool but I've never really wanted to spend the extra money on one. And besides, the cloth-tops are just too easy to slice. Leave your ipod in there for a split second and s-l-i-c-e.

As for the steering wheel, it IS strange.. When driving long distances I find it uncomfortable. I've had my SS since spring 2010.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:49 PM   #9
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I ignore MT flat out. In about 100% of comparisons they will say they like how one car has a certain feature, but wont like that EXACT same feature in another car. They are purely interested in brands, not really testing the cars.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:50 PM   #10
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I think that could hold true for MotorTrend's writers as well, in the opposite sense with which I think you meant that comment.
That very well could be true. I never put much stock in what people write about any car. I know what I like ,and I fell for the camaro hard. Hell, I sold a 2010 GT500 to get my SS.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:54 PM   #11
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I know what I like, and I fell for the camaro hard.
That's pretty much where my head's at.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:55 PM   #12
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So what exactly are they complaining about the 9 and 3 hold position issue on the steering wheel? I see both the stang and camaro have solid steering spokes at 9 and 3 positions, so what makes the camaro's more uncomfortable?
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:00 PM   #13
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That's pretty much where my head's at.
and I too don't get it with the steering wheel. Maybe I don't drive properly. LOL
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:01 PM   #14
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So what exactly are they complaining about the 9 and 3 hold position issue on the steering wheel? I see both the stang and camaro have solid steering spokes at 9 and 3 positions, so what makes the camaro's more uncomfortable?
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and I too don't get it with the steering wheel. Maybe I don't drive properly. LOL
Apparently it makes their fingers stick out straight....I think they need to see some good doctors....
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:02 PM   #15
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well said coolman,,,welcome to the cooler side
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:04 PM   #16
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WOW.. did I just read this right??? The magazine testers that determined the Mustang GT COUPE... was a better car than the Camaro SS Coupe.. now have come back and said that the Mustang Convert... is better than the Camaro SS Convert...


BIG SURPRISE!!!

Which would I buy.. well we already kno.

What kicks me in the ass is that these two CONVERTIBLE Pony cars are pushing 0-60 time in 4.5-4.7 secs. Anyone in the kno would realize that this is phenomenal for Convertible cars in this class.

As for the consolation.. for us Camaro lovers... Something that Mustang guys won't admit:

How did a 4138 lb Camaro... come within 2/10s in the 60... 3/10s in the 1/4... BEAT the 3725 lb Mustang in the FIGURE 8, not to mention lateral gs.. AND out BRAKE it by 5 ft.

Look at this quote from the comparo:


Quote:
While the Chevy is much improved, it's still not competitive with the Ford.
MT

which makes absolutely NO SENSE whatsoever considering the numbers that were put up from both. They are essentially hating on the Camaro because of it's styling.
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:09 PM   #17
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well said coolman,,,welcome to the cooler side
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:16 PM   #18
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While I think the shifter is fine, I do agree that the steering wheel sucks. It boils down to personal preference, but I've never cared for it.
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:21 PM   #19
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MT sucks
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:25 PM   #20
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As for the consolation.. for us Camaro lovers... Something that Mustang guys won't admit:

How did a 4138 lb Camaro... come within 2/10s in the 60... 3/10s in the 1/4... BEAT the 3725 lb Mustang in the FIGURE 8, not to mention lateral gs.. AND out BRAKE it by 5 ft.
My thoughts.....

While not by a huge margin, Camaro SS brakes have consistently performed better than those in the Mustag GT.

As for the acceleration difference, to be blunt you get no extra credit for being chunky. Yes, the Mustang outruns the Camaro based primarily upon the weight difference, but then faster is faster no matter how you get there. I think the Camaro convertible suffers a bit here due to what appears to be a lot of chassis stiffening which adds a lot of weight.

As for handling, in terms of sheer numbers the Camaro vert seems to have benefited a lot from that same added chassis bracing. However, on the flips side yet another possible downside to that chassis bracing might be the unsettled rear they talk about here. A stiffer rear and stiff springs can make a rear suspension that bounces around a little bounce around a lot.

Given what seems to have been done on both sides of the equation here I'm not at all surprised to see the Camaro post better lateral G and figure 8 times than the Mustang, but I do question the strategy that brought that about. No doubt, Ford and Chevy are taking two vastly different approaches to how they tune their coupe and convertible models respectively. For some time now Ford has biased the GT vert noticeably toward the comfort side of the equation relative to the GT coupe even when they say they don't, Chevy doesn't appear to be taking the same approach. Put simply Ford obviously thinks convertible customers appreciate a softer touch, Chevy went a bit more hardcore with their drop top

I will be curious to see how this plays out long term.

Last edited by syr74; 01-26-2011 at 10:06 PM.
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:32 PM   #21
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wow now that I actually read the article. Haters gonna hate guys, haters gonna hate.
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:37 PM   #22
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If I had any ability or input from a marketing stand point from Chevrolet, I wouldn't provide a damn thing to motortrend to do comparisons with. It's obvious by their articles in the past and present.. they have desire to out do Ford no matter the difference.

I'm sure Chevrolet could build the most hi performance car ever known to the states and motortrend would have absolutely nothing positive to say.

"F" motortrend and all their bias opinions.

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Old 01-26-2011, 09:42 PM   #23
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If I had any ability or input from a marketing stand point from Chevrolet, I wouldn't provide a damn thing to motortrend to do comparisons with.
Imagine what they'd say, then!
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Old 01-26-2011, 10:05 PM   #24
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Did anyone notice the Ford ads all over the website?

"Ford Trend"

Dont let anyone tell you differently from what you like. You like a Mustang, drive a Mustang, you like a Camaro? Same thing.

Who are they to tell me what is better? its up to me.
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Old 01-26-2011, 10:16 PM   #25
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MT seems to consider making their judgements based on a knob on the insturment panel in the wrong spot or if the cargo net held all the groceries in place. And this guy has the nerve to talk about the convertible leaking -- the same idiot that dons a fishermans rain suit and tests drives both cars in an inch an hour rainstorm!!! Yeah...that is the guy Im listening to......
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