Since it was introduced as a 2008 model, the Mustang Cobra Jet has gone unopposed by Chevy in the world of turnkey factory drag racers. Designed for NHRA Stock and Super Stock competition, the FR500CJ has set records in multiple classes, and despite a very limited production run in each of the model years it’s been available, it has been an unqualified success on the dragstrip as well as a fan favorite.
For 2012, a revised supercharged 5.4l Modular V8 pushing 430 or so horsepower sits under the hood, and the CJ weighs in around 3,200 pounds ready-to-race, minus the driver. Chevy racers looking to compete against the Cobra Jet have had to build their own Camaro, either by stripping down the portly showroom version, or by building up from a “body in white” as no comparable car is available from the General.
That’s all about to change, however. It is our belief that at this year’s SEMA show in Las Vegas at the beginning of November, Chevy will announce their answer to the CJ – a Stock Eliminator Camaro. We’re trying to sniff out more than just confirmation that the project exists; while we have no details, it’s safe to guess that such a car will spec out much like the CJ in terms of being a serialized-but-not-street-legal chassis with upgraded drag-specific suspension, chassis, and brakes. While the production Camaro SS’ naturally aspirated LS3 matches the blown CJ 5.4 in terms of horsepower, GM Performance Parts has a lot more cool stuff in their toybox than Ford Racing.
The 5th Gen Camaro is a heavy car, and we suspect it will be difficult to match the FR500CJ’s weight, so more power is likely for a SEC. A production-spec LS7 would be an easy choice to make the new Camaro factory racer outperform the competition, but is too much to ask for a fuel-injected LSX454R in the 700 horsepower range, naturally aspirated? And what about that independent rear suspension? Will it stay, or does GM have a straight axle swap up their sleeve?
At this point, it’s all just speculation beyond the rumor that the Stock Eliminator Camaro will be unveiled in just a few short weeks. Stay tuned as we beat the bushes to see if we can find out more information ahead of the SEMA show…