Mustang v.s Camaro
Throughout history, there have been many rivalries that have consisted in the automotive industry, but nothing compares to the rivalry of the Mustang versus the Camaro. From the beginning, in 1960, the Mustang was the first of the cars that started to represent the title pony car. From that one a couple years later Chevrolet saw the amazing sales the Mustang was putting and decided to compete against the Mustang. There were many auto manufacturers that tried their own taste at defeating the Mustang but not have come close to what Chevrolet had done.
Let’s start from the beginning. In the 1960s, Ford’s General Manager Lee Iacocca predicted that the new “boomers” were coming hot into the market to buy a new car. So with that information. Lee Iacocca and a team decided to create a car that many consumers would want, which in this case their main audience was predicted to be the upcoming “boomers”. When they successfully created the Mustang, on launch day, many people loved the car and the Mustang got the title “Most Production Models Sold During a Launch”. After a couple years of amazing sales, which many youngsters were attracted to, Chevrolet after 2.5 years of the Mustang’s production, decided to build a car that would rival against the Mustang. When the Camaro went into production, it had a bigger engine, more trim levels, and looks that were far more aggressive and demeaning compared to the Mustang. Even though the Camaro came in hot into the market, the same year, 1967, Ford came out with a more upgraded car to be called the Mustang GT500 which Carroll Shelby put in a 7 liter V8. The body of the car was already light as it is and now with the engine upgrade, the car had 355 horsepower. After a while, that engine was able to be in production and made a big mark on the Mustang. When Chevrolet saw what Ford did, they countered it. In 1969, Chevrolet made two 7 liter engines. One was an iron block engine called the L72 and the other one was an aluminum block engine called the ZL1. The ZL1 engine outshined the Mustang. The engine had 430 horsepower while the Mustang had 355 horsepower and the engine was lighter. This engine was not only outshining the Mustang but also some Corvettes.
During the 1970s, many engines that were made for high power were being ditched for a more practical and economic engine. During this time, Ford’s Mustang Mach 1 and Chevrolet’s Camaro Z28 showcased those types of engines. At this point in time, both the Mustang and the Camaro had matching sale numbers. Everything was going well for both of these cars, until the oil crisis came to be. The gas prices raised when OPEC called for an embargo. Ford was already working on a car that would be more economically friendly and to compete with the Nissan 240Z and the Toyota Celica. Ford then released the Mustang II two months before the oil crisis. Due to their impeccable timing, Ford was put in an amazing situation in the market. In 1974, the Mustang sold out the Camaro by a considerable amount. Even though the Mustang was doing very well, the Camaro picked up very quickly in 1978. They were outselling the Mustang by 100,000 sales. The base Camaro was offering 105 horsepower while the base Mustang was offering a small 89 horsepower. Not only that, all the Camaro's trims were all faster than the ones given by the Mustang.
After the 1970s were over, the 1980s became a lot better due to the fact that the oil crisis was being elevated. Due to the Mustang’s horrible sales in the 70s, they decided to ditch their older platform and went with a new one called the fox body. The new Mustang was giving out 157 horsepower. The new Camaro got a lot of upgrades but it had 90 horsepower. That was extremely small which affected the cars 0-60 numbers. To get from 0 MPH to 60 MPH it took the car 20 seconds. That is horrible. The only reason these numbers were so bad was due to the oil crisis. The engineers were still scared of it so they tried making the car still somewhat practical. In 1985, the Camaro was back to 200+ horsepower. During the time the Camaro was getting its original numbers back, the Mustang was working with officials to become the new cop car. They offered a Mustang SSP which stands for Special Service Package.
After the 1980s, the 1990s brought out a new segment in the Mustang and the Camaro. In 1993, the 4th Generation Camaro came out. The Camaro had many options with either a convertible or a T-Top and many others. The Camaro either came in a V6 or a V8. The LT1 V8 had 275 horsepower. The new Camaro SS had a LT4 V8 that gave out 330 horsepower. At Ford, the new Mustang wasn't pushing out as much power as the Camaro. The Mustang had a 4.6L V8 that was pushing out 215 horsepower. In 1993, Ford saw that they weren’t doing so well, so they started the SVT. SVT stands for Special Vehicle Team. This team was responsible for making the Mustangs faster and more desirable. In the process they made a Mustang called the SVT Cobra and added 30 more horsepower. In 1996, the Mustang then got a 4.6 V8 making 305 horsepower. Chevrolet, during the end of the 1990s, was put in a bad place with slowing sales as well as a bad place in the market. Due to those reasons the Camaro had to stop being produced.
In 2005, Ford released the new Mustang. Due to the Camaro not being sold anymore, the Mustang had the market all to itself. It was until 5 years later that the Camaro came back into production. Camaro had to try its best to even get back on competing grounds with the Mustang. The Camaro was marketed by a 2 hour movie called the Transformers. This gave the Camaro major name recognition due to the movie. Due to the Mustang not having that much horsepower, the Camaro came out with a LS3 engine that was producing 426 horsepower. In 2011, Ford changed up their tactics to defeat the Camaro. They made a 5L V8 engine and were producing 412 horsepower. Even though that was lower than that of a Camaro, it was 500 pounds lighter. The Mustang had a faster quarter mile than that of a Camaro but the Camaro had better track times. Due to that, the sales of both the Mustang and the Camaro were the same. In 2015, the Mustang got a power boost to 435 horsepower. The best part about the upgrade was the long awaited independent rear suspension. The Mustang now was just as fast on the track as the Camaro. Both the Mustang and the Camaro came out with a supercharger variant: The Mustang Shelby GT500 and the Camaro ZL1 1LE. The Camaro had a faster 0-60 MPH while the Mustang had a faster 0-100. The Mustang also had bigger brakes and wheels, but the Camaro was around a 100 pounds lighter. Both cars basically had the same quarter mile time as well as the same base price. Even though they were pretty similar, they were never put to a race against each other, so no one really knows which one is better. Both cars were going back and forth with their numbers. They were still relatively the same. In my opinion, with this deep analysis of both cars, I think the Mustang is better. You have to understand that the Camaro left the pony car segment for years until making a return. Not only that, in my opinion, the looks of the Mustang seem far more aggressive and mean compared to that of a Camaro. You also have to understand that it is my opinion and I am just an enthusiast in the world of cars.