Remember when General Motors teased multiple vehicle silhouettes over its Ultium battery platform? We saw a truck, a van, an autonomous vehicle, and what appeared to be… a Chevrolet Camaro. Such a concept remains unpopular among the faithful of the iconic American muscle car, but as regulators seek to squeeze out internal combustion engine vehicles in various ways, an EV could be the only thing that continues the Camaro nameplate into the near- to mid-term future.
Speaking with Autos Editor Gary Gastelu of Fox News this week, General Motors President Mark Reuss was able to shed a bit of light on the possibilities of an electric Chevrolet Camaro.
“Lots of things being looked at, studied, designed, engineered … but I can tell you that the platform is absolutely capable of doing just about everything we want in our portfolio across every segment,” Reuss told the news outlet, when asked if and when there would be a sports car on the Ultium platform. Cryptic, yes, but that’s all we got for now.
Reuss – a family name that’s been with General Motors since the 1950s – also steered the conversation towards the upcoming Cadillac Celestiq luxury sedan, which will be a low-roof vehicle as well, and will be hand-built in Michigan. It’s expected to be the most expensive Cadillac in the portfolio by far when it debuts.
The future of the Chevrolet Camaro remains murky. MC&T originally reported that General Motors axed its original plans for what was going to be the seventh-generation Camaro back in 2018, along with several other vehicle programs. The lifespan for the current sixth-generation Camaro is charted until at least 2023, where things appear to go blank after that. Should GM (gm*) green-light an all-electric seventh-generation Camaro, it will be in place of the original strategy, which would have likely featured a hybrid V8 engine of some sort, based on 2018 customer surveys.
Comparatively, Dodge is planning on electrifying its Charger and Challenger, but won’t immediately commit to dropping the Hemi V8. Meanwhile, Ford Motor Company is turning the Mustang into a brand, which could sell an all-electric Mustang coupe by the end of the decade.
Whatever comes next, if it is an electric Chevrolet Camaro, it’s critical that the brand gets the pricing strategy right. Sales have since nose-dived after the retirement of the popular fifth-generation Camaro, which routinely outsold the Ford Mustang when it was around. But Chevy has since been able to correct the ship a bit with the introduction of the Camaro LT1 trim level. This unique package gives customers 455 horsepower in the form of a proper small block 6.2L V8 engine for less money than either a Ford Mustang GT or a Dodge Challenger R/T. It now makes up 25 percent of all new Camaro sales.