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Auto Show:  2011 Chicago Auto Show

Chevrolet Camaro Convertible Indy 500 Pace Car Replica - Chicago Auto Show

author photo by Autotrader February 2011
February 10, 2011

The Chevrolet marque and one of the world’s most famous motor races, the Indianapolis 500, have one special thing in common: they both celebrate their centennial in 2011. To mark this event, the bow tie brand has produced a limited-edition version of its Camaro SS Convertible, a replica of the pace car that will lap the legendary Brickyard circuit on May 29 this year. And it was unveiled at the 2011 Chicago Auto Show.

This model’s color scheme -- white with orange stripes and door graphics -- pays tribute to the 1969 Camaro Convertible which performed the Indy 500 duties that year. Its interior has matching orange leather trim, a white instrument panel with orange stripes, and Indy 500 logos embossed in the headrests of the front seats.

By virtue of being an SS iteration, the 2011 Indianapolis pace car replica is powered by a 6.2-liter V8 engine (426 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque), with either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission.

Replicas of the 1969 version became collectors’ items; this model looks to be repeating that history since only 500 cars will be made, starting in the spring. The connection Chevy has with the Indy 500 goes back to the earliest days. When it was still a dirt track, Louis Chevrolet and his brother Gaston used to race their hand-made cars there. Over the intervening years, 22 Chevy machines have been pace cars, starting with the 1948 Fleetmaster Six and taking in a considerable bunch of Corvettes.

The regular 2012 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible reaches the showrooms this month, starting at $30,000. Nothing official yet on this pace car replica, but expect it to be substantially more.

author photoCOLIN RYAN has driven hundreds of cars thousands of miles while writing for BBC Top Gear magazine, Popular Mechanics, the Los Angeles Times, European Car, Import Tuner and many other publications, websites, TV shows, etc.

This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Chevrolet Camaro Convertible Indy 500 Pace Car Replica - Chicago Auto Show - Autotrader