Chevrolet introduced the 2019 Camaro earlier this year and one of the biggest additions to the lineup was the Turbo 1LE which joins the family as the entry-level performance model.
While performance model and turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine rarely go hand-in-hand in a muscle car, The Fast Lane Car recently took a spin in the entry-level 1LE to see if it was worth your consideration.
Before when get into their findings, lets recap what makes the Camaro Turbo 1LE so special. Chevrolet says the model leverages the performance and weight savings allowed by the turbocharged engine which produces 275 hp (205 kW / 278 PS) and 295 lb-ft (400 Nm) of torque. The model is significantly lighter than other 1LE variants, but it’s also significantly less powerful than the Ford Mustang which comes standard with a 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine producing 310 hp (231 kW / 314 PS) and 350 lb-ft (474 Nm) of torque.
Thankfully, the Turbo 1LE isn’t totally reliant of its turbocharged engine to earn performance creed. Instead, engineers equipped the model with an assortment of upgrades including an FE3 suspension which features larger stabilizer bars, specifically tuned dampers, stiffer rear cradle bushings and cross-axis ball joints. The car also has a flat-bottom steering wheel, a Brembo braking system and 20-inch wheels wrapped in summer-only tires.
These are certainly nice upgrades and they’re paired with a six-speed manual transmission. So are they enough to make you forget about the more powerful Ford Mustang?
Maybe, maybe not. TFLC’s Nathan Adlen says the Turbo 1LE doesn’t feel all that different from the rest of the Camaro lineup, but he likes the gearbox and says it’s an excellent package overall.