Make us your home page
The Daily Drivers | By Peter Couture and Lyra Solochek, Times staff writers

The Daily Drivers: 2010 Chevrolet Camaro V6 combines sensible and sporty

We got our first glimpse of Chevy's reborn pony car several months ago when we took a quick test drive in the 426-horsepower Camaro SS. And we were wowed. But here's what's even more impressive: The V-6 Camaro produces 304 horsepower and still gets 29 mpg on the highway. And the base model is really affordable.

Appearance: Peter describes it is as a life-size Hot Wheels car. Our tester had 20-inch aluminum wheels, which accentuated the bold, low-slung design. There's even a hint of the Corvette in these tail lights. The rear fenders flare out for a stout shoulder; the body creases and signature "shark gills" give it character. The front grille is pure menace.

Performance: The V-6 has great acceleration and a pleasing — if subdued — exhaust note. The six-speed automatic shifts smoothly, but we both would have liked to have experienced how the V-6 performed with a manual transmission. There is a "manual" mode, but we didn't like the button shifters on the steering wheel. Give us paddles, please. The car hugs into turns, even at relatively high speeds. (Those of us of a certain age will remember the TV commercials in which the original Camaro was called "The Hugger.") Peter drove it to Orlando with a full complement of passengers and it was a fun highway crusier.

Interior: Lyra loved driving the car at night. The ambient lighting glows neon blue with red gauges. Especially impressive is the built-in light in the door panels for a diner-like accent. Our tester had the optional four-gauge cluster in the center console — shades of the '60s Camaro. Cool, but it's more for looks than practicality. The dash's two main gauges — the speedo and tach — sandwich a digital display and are deep-set, as is the steering wheel, which Lyra found made the controls difficult to use. Lyra thought the AC controls were some of the best she's seen: simple and logical. The audio controls, also, are well-designed and easy to use. There's no LCD screen or navigation, however. But the radio is a blast from the past: When you tune to a station, you get the classic bar with the moving line. The leather seats are comfortable and have a good range of adjustment for the driver, but Peter could never quite get enough headroom. He blames the sunroof. Lyra had a size concern, too. Would she be able to see over the fairly high hood profile? Yes, she could. And you pay another penalty for style: The driver's rear visibility is compromised. (A blind-spot warning system would be welcome.) A few other nits: The door handle is awkward to reach. And here's a trend that we both dislike: door-lock buttons in the center console.

Our 3 favorites

Peter Couture

Styling: There's enough of the original to say 1969 but it's not just a retro design.

The V-6: You won't say: I could have had a V-8.

Driveability: No need for much backseat room? Here's a stylish daily driver.

Lyra Solochek

Hey, parents: You can set the speed control to warn the driver when the car hits 56 mph or faster.

The AC: Simple and strong. Backseat passengers aren't slighted.

Halo headlights: Distinctive, cool, menacing.

The bottom line: Hot Wheels indeed. It's a toy for the big kids. And you get at lot of the benefits of the more ferocious Camaro SS without the mileage penalty.

2010 Chevrolet Camaro 2LT Coupe

Price: $26,580, 2LT base, $30,735, as tested.

Powertrain: 3.6-liter V-6 with six-speed automatic transmission, rear-wheel drive

Horsepower: 304 hp at 6,400 rpm

Torque: 273 pound-

feet at 5,200 rpm

Curb weight: 3,728 pounds


in inches:


Length, 190.4

Width, 75.5

Fuel economy:

18 miles per gallon city, 29 mpg highway

Fuel type: Regular unleaded

Safety features: Stabilitrac with traction control, airbags and curtains, parking assist, ABS,

Other trim

levels: LS, 1LT, 1SS, 2SS

Options worth considering: 20-inch wheels, high-intensity headlamps with halo ring, rear spoiler, RS Corvette-style taillights, sunroof.

Web site:

The Daily Drivers: 2010 Chevrolet Camaro V6 combines sensible and sporty 10/30/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 4, 2009 3:05pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Last steel beam marks construction milestone for Tom and Mary James' museum


    ST. PETERSBURG — Tom and Mary James on Wednesday signed their names to the last steel beam framing the 105-ton stone mesa that will be built at the entrance of the museum that bears their name: the James Museum of Western and Wildlife Art.

    The topping-out ceremony of the James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art was held Wednesday morning in downtown St. Petersburg. Mary James (from left), husband Tom and Mayor Rick Kriseman signed the final beam before it was put into place. When finished, the $55 million museum at 100 Central Ave. will hold up to 500 pieces of the couple's 3,000-piece art collection. [Courtesy of James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art]
  2. Heights Public Market to host two Tampa Bay food trucks


    TAMPA — The Heights Public Market announced the first two food trucks for its "rotating stall," which will feature new restaurants every four months. Surf and Turf and Empamamas will be rolled out first.

    Heights Public Market is opening this summer inside the Tampa Armature Works building.
[SKIP O'ROURKE   |   Times file photo]

  3. Author Randy Wayne White could open St. Pete's biggest restaurant on the pier

    Food & Dining

    ST. PETERSBURG — The story begins with Yucatan shrimp.

    St. Petersburg Deputy Mayor Kanika Tomalin, pilot Mark Futch, Boca Grande, St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman, and author and businessman Randy Wayne White,  Sanibel, exit a Maule Super Rocket seaplane after taking a fight around Tampa Bay off the St. Petersburg waterfront, 6/28/17.  White and his business partners are in negotiations with the City of St. Petersburg to build a fourth Doc Ford's Rum Bar & Grille on the approach to the St. Petersburg Pier with a second event space on the pier according to White. The group met near Spa Beach after a ground breaking ceremony for the new pier. "We want to have our business open by the time the pier opens," said White. Other Dr. Ford restaurants are located on Sanibel, Captiva and Ft. Myers Beach. SCOTT KEELER   |   Times
  4. Guilty plea for WellCare Health Plans former counsel Thaddeus Bereday


    Former WellCare Health Plans general counsel Thaddeus M.S. Bereday pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement to the Florida Medicaid program, and faces a maximum penalty of five years in federal prison. A sentencing date has not yet been set, acting U.S. Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow of the Middle District …

    WellCare Health Plans former general counsel Thaddeus M.S. Bereday, pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement to the Florida Medicaid program, and faces a maximum penalty of five years in federal prison. A sentencing date has not yet been set, acting U.S. Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow of the Middle District of Florida stated Wednesday. [LinkedIn handout]
  5. DOT shows alternatives to former Tampa Bay Express toll lanes


    TAMPA — State transportation officials are evaluating at least a half-dozen alternatives to the controversial Tampa Bay interstate plan that they will workshop with the community over the next 18 months.

    Florida Department of Transportation consultant Brad Flom explains potential alternatives to adding toll lanes to Interstate 275 during a meeting Wednesday at the DOT’s Tampa office. Flom presented seven diagrams, all of which swapped toll lanes for transit, such as light rail or express bus, in the I-275 corridor from downtown Tampa to Bearss Avenue.