On The Dyno With The 2018 Camaro ZL1 1LE

We don’t know about you, but every time the General puts out a new V8-powered muscle machine, we always wonder what it’s actually making at the wheels. To us, the only thing that really matters these days is what a car can actually put to the ground. And while the ZL1 1LE has the exact same 650 horsepower 650 lb-ft of torque LT4 that the standard base ZL1 utilizes, it makes you wonder if they are exactly the same—after all, ratings have been known to be fudged. Well, Hennessey Performance decided to find out by putting theirs on the dyno.

While the 1LE is designed to carve up the track, it’s power production still makes it a brute in a straight line. This is made more than apparent by the billowing burnout the guys over at Hennessey perform in the new ZL1 1LE. After they are done turning expensive, one-off rubber into clouds of smoke, they head over to the rollers to see what this thing is actually making power wise.

The result is an impressive 567.35 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and an equally astonishing 542 lb-ft of torque at just 4,650 rpm. However, as impressive as these results really are, the most amazing part is two fold. First, the torque curve is insanely flat—a fact that we’ve know about the LT series of engines for some time, but impressive none the less. The second, and arguably the most enlightening bit of information, is that while the LT4 makes peak power at 6,000 rpm, it carries that peak out to 6,500 rpm, losing perhaps 5-7 horsepower at most after its crest.

And though the numbers are impressive, they are exactly on par with the dyno test Hennessey performed on a bone stock 6-speed ZL1 last December. That car made 567 horsepower and 570 lb-ft of torque—but hey, at least the numbers are consistent. No matter though, as Hennessey plans to add one of their HPE850 kits to the equation and really up the horsepower on this track-bred Camaro. Now, if they give us a show down between their modified GT350R and the HPE850 ZL1 1LE, then we’ll be in business.

About the author

Chase Christensen

Chase Christensen hails from Salt Lake City, and grew up around high-performance GM vehicles. He took possession of his very first F-body— an ’86 Trans Am— at the age of 13 and has been wrenching ever since.
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