Chevrolet’s COPO Camaro drag racer loses its top

2012 Chevrolet COPO Camaro convertible front three quarter viewChevrolet’s COPO Camaro was built to do one thing: go fast in a straight line. That singularity of purpose makes it pretty special. So does the fact that only 69 copies will be made. Chevy couldn’t leave well enough alone though, so it decided to make the last two COPOs into convertibles. Can you feel the wind in your hair while wearing a helmet?

Like the hardtops, the COPO convertibles are all about reliving Chevy’s past muscle car glory. The name stands for Central Office Production Order, the system of back door channels drag racers used to put big engines in little Camaros in the ‘60s.

The 2012 COPO Camaro is a drag racing special, designed to compete in the National Hot Rod Association’s Stock Eliminator and Super Stock classes. The cars have VIN tags, but extensive modifications mean they probably won’t be street legal in any of the United States.

Like the coupe, the COPO convertible ditches the stock Camaro’s independent rear suspension for a solid axle, and rolls on fat drag slicks. The interior is gutted to save weight and make room for a roll cage, racing bucket seat, and Chevrolet Performance gauges.

COPO Camaros come with three engine choices. Six cars were ordered with a 5.3-liter V8 with 2.9-liter supercharger, which produces 500 horsepower. Forty-three cars were ordered with a naturally-aspirated, 7.0-liter V8. This engine is related to the LS7 V8 in the current Corvette Z06, and produces 425 hp in the COPO.

The convertibles were part of the 20-car block ordered with a 5.3 and a larger, 4.0-liter supercharger. That combination is good for 550 hp. The coupes got Powerglide automatic transmissions, but the convertibles will be equipped with Turbo 400 three-speed automatics.

Only 69 2012 COPO Camaros will be built, and the convertibles will be numbers 68 and 69. As if a one-of-two body style with the most potent engine wasn’t enough to whet collectors’ appetites, only one of the convertibles, number 69, will be for sale.2012 Chevrolet COPO Camaro convertible rear three quarter view

Chevy is keeping one car, while the very last 2012 COPO will be auctioned off for charity. It will cross the block at the 2013 Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale, Arizona in Januaru 2013, with all proceeds going to the American Heart Association. It will presumably sell for much more than the regular COPO’s $89,000 sticker price.

Hopefully the good cause will distract buyers from the silliness of this convertible dragster. Coupes are stiffer and more aerodynamic, and, in racing, every little advantage counts. The COPO convertible’s rarity will probably be its biggest attraction.

Luckily for fans of burnt rubber, the auction won’t be the last time Chevy offers a COPO Camaro. Another batch of 69 cars will be built in 2013. The entire car, from the engine to the unpainted body-in-white, will also be available a la carte, so buyers can build their own COPO Camaro.


BMW’s 2020 M340i will show off mix of tech and luxury at the Los Angeles show

The 2020 3 Series represents the seventh generation of BMW's bread-and-butter luxury sedan. Where previous generations emphasized the driving experience, the 2020 3 Series focuses more on tech than ever before.

Born to run (forever): The most reliable cars you can buy right now

We all dread the thought of our car turning into a money pit, but choosing a dependable vehicle from the start can help us rack up countless care-free miles. Here, we've rounded up some of the most reliable cars available.

From Rolls-Royce to Lamborghini, these are the most expensive cars in the world

If you recently discovered an oil reserve in your backyard, you probably have some extra cash to spend. Look no further, because we’ve rounded up the most expensive cars in the world.

Where are you going this weekend? These 5 off-road vehicles say 'anywhere'

The body-on-frame SUV is going extinct, but there are still several options for buyers looking to skip the asphalt. To help you sort the good from the bad, we've rounded up the best off-roaders currently available.

Land Rover shows its artsy side by previewing the 2020 Range Rover Evoque

Land Rover made life-sized wire sculptures to preview the 2020 Range Rover Evoque. The all-new SUV will make its debut during a private event held in London on November 22, and deliveries will begin in 2019.

These headlights have 4 color settings to help save lives under all conditions

Boslla headlights are an easy-to-install solution to achieve all-weather lighting for your vehicle. After a quick ten-minute install, these lights have up to four settings to get you through anything.

Car parts maker ZF is using drones to deliver components to its factories

ZF recently became the first entity in Germany to receive approval to use drones to deliver spare parts, and the company now uses them to deliver parts from its central warehouses to its workshops.

The DBX SUV will go where no Aston Martin has gone before

When it launches in 2019, the Aston Martin DBX will be the British automaker's first SUV. In the meantime, camouflaged DBX prototypes will undergo strenuous testing around the world.

Ford teams up with Walmart to study consumer response to autonomous delivery

Last week it was Ford and VW, and this week Ford and Walmart are signaling a desire to work together on autonomous vehicles solutions. Ford and the giant retailer will study consumer reactions to self-driving delivery vehicles.

Our favorite fuel-efficient cars are as frugal as they are fun

You don't need to opt for a hybrid or an all-electric ride in order to achieve good fuel economy. These vehicles pack both performance and style, whether you're in the market for a luxury sedan or a game-changing pickup truck.

Out of juice? Learn how to jump-start a car with this quick guide

Jumping a car is a simple procedure, but not everyone knows how to properly do so. To make things easier, we've put together a quick-hit guide on how to fire up your vehicle using jumper cables and a second power source.

Prep your car for the coming snow and sleet with these cold weather tips

Driving in the winter, whether downtown or across the country, is rarely easy. Luckily, we've put together a quick rundown of a few things you should do to winterize your car before the snow officially hits.
DT Daily

DT Daily: Waymo’s driverless cars, ‘Fallout 76’ tips, and Racella

In today's episode of DT Daily, we discuss Waymo's foray into the ridesharing sector, along with various tips for making the most of the recently launched Fallout 76. We also sit down with singer Racella to chat about her new EP, Waves.

Want to keep connected on the road? Here are 5 ways to add Bluetooth to your car

The best way to make an old ride feel young again is to bring it up speed with the 21st century. Here's how to properly add Bluetooth to your vehicle, via independent kits, vehicle adapters, or aftermarket head units.