I was originally going to write an April Fools joke to start today’s post. You know, my wonderful wife and I won the Powerball last night! Psych! April Fools! Believe me, in the 1-in-300,000,000 chance we did win, I wouldn’t write about it here, even in jest.
In any event, a frightening depression has enveloped me in the last few hours. One would think that being just hours away from our second and “final” vaccine shot against the damn virus would bolster my spirits. I don’t think this funk has anything to do with vaccines or the damn virus.
Perhaps it’s the apparent speed with which the first quarter of this year disappeared that is the source of my “blues.” Every week, every month seems to go faster than the last. Unlike Secretariat’s amazing performance in the 1973 Kentucky Derby–when every quarter-mile was faster than the previous one, and yes, that does mean his fastest quarter mile was the last one–this acceleration of time with time is no prize.
Anyway, I don’t know why my mood has dropped so sharply. I do know that it makes writing today’s post much more difficult. The continuing issues with the WordPress editor not keeping the toolbar on the screen as the post lengthens and not updating the word count in real time are also annoying as hell.
On this day in 2010 the Chevrolet Camaro was named World Car Design of the Year. The award was presented to Chevrolet at the New York International Auto Show. From newcars.com (not a secure site) a picture of a 2010 Camaro:
I think the newer Camaros are sharp looking cars and are a great update of the first-generation design. They have not done that well in the market place, however, being outsold by the Ford Mustang and Dodge Challenger. Rumors persist the car will be discontinued in the next one or two model years.
In the US, sales of the newer Camaros (fifth- and sixth-generation, if you must know) peaked at about 88,000 in 2011, the second year of production. By 2018, sales dropped to about 50,000 and to fewer than 30,000 for 2020. As a comparison, Ford sold 61,090 Mustangs in 2020 and Dodge sold 52,955 Challengers. All of the ponycars have seen their sales decline, but the Camaro decline is the worst of the three.
Some have argued that the Corvette and Camaro have too much overlap and cannibalize each other’s sales. FCA, now Stellantis, gave the Challenger more breathing room by making the Charger a four-door sedan. The Mustang has a status all its own.
(On a tangent and speaking of the Corvette: in February the average price for a new one was over $86,000. Remember that the base price is barely $60,000. I believe this means the Corvette is taking customers away from other performance cars that are still more expensive than the Vette, even at $86,000, and that the C8 is very popular.)
I think the writing is on the wall for the Camaro. The Mustang is safe, but will almost certainly become a hybrid or electric car in the not too distant future. As for the Challenger, its future is unclear in the wake of the merger with PSA Group that formed the new company, Stellantis.
Change is inevitable, but that doesn’t mean all change is all good.
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4 thoughts on “April Fools”
You live in Arizona now, which is a good reason to cheer up.
Secretariat was a fantastic race horse. Each of his three Triple Crown races was memorable. IMHO his Belmont Stakes win was the greatest. When you run the race from start to finish at the head of the pack, and then win going away by 31 lengths you are stupendous. I do not know of a greater race horse. The Disney movie of the horse is a good interpretation of his and his owners story.
The current Camaro is a nice looking car and was a Holden (Australian) design not a Detroit original. I think that Chevrolet has been partially responsible for its drop in sales with the lower power ratings of the drive trains. Compared to the Mustang and its large offerings of higher output, the power hungry customers will gravitate to the horsepower not the brand.
Thanks, Philip. Don’t forget that the Camaro is available in ZL1 spec with 650 HP/650 LB-FT. I think the observation that the Corvette and Camaro markets overlap has merit.
And we continue the march toward SUV sameness for us all. I believe PM is right about Camaro vs Mustang. Though I drive a puny Mustang V6, the vast majority of the Mustangs I see are 5.0L versions. People are buying the power.
Thanks, JS. Ford and GM are acting without much respect for their customers, in my opinion. I will once again offer the opinion that their headlong rush into EVs is at least partially motivated by the performance of Tesla’s stock price.
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