We were disappointed to hear Chevrolet plans on offering the 580 horsepower Camaro ZL1 with an automatic transmission, so we were particularly disheartened to hear the car maker expects more than 50 percent of examples of the most powerful Camaro ever to be built without a clutch pedal. How did things come to this? Blame the aged…and the young ‘uns.
“There are a lot of people out there who, as they age, do not want a third pedal,” Camaro/Corvette marketing manager John Fitzpatrick told WardsAuto. “And then you have younger people who have never been exposed to a manual transmission.” Fitzpatrick says younger buyers frequently grow up playing racing video games that use flappy paddle shifters, preventing that long-present stigma against two-pedal cars from developing among the performance-minded.
For what it’s worth, GM swears up and down that the Hydra-Matic 6L90 six-speed automatic in the ZL1 has been optimized for maximum performance on the street and on the track. Chevrolet does expect muscle and sports car traditionalists to push the early balance of transmissions in favor of the six-speed stick, however, so it shouldn’t be hard to find a manual ZL1 if you want one. Which you should. [via Ward's]