Camaro and Mustang

Camaro or Mustang? Let’s have a discussion…

It’s taken me what feels like a LONG time to come around and allow the Camaro’s new look grow on me. It’s not that I disliked it in the beginning – I just didn’t see much of a difference going from one generation to the next. Some car companies seem to stretch out a real, noticeable design for too long. Cadillac did it with the DeVille/DTS. Lexus did it with the LS460. New generations that you could bearly tell apart. And that’s how I felt about the sixth generation Camaro.

The thing is – pictures do not do the car justice. Seeing the car in person, most specifically on the road, makes all the difference. That’s not to say I now “see the light” and the sixth generation Camaro really is SO different – it isn’t. But it looks great. It’s a real head-turner and I like it MUCH better than the fifth generation – which I liked very much.

I’m more of a big, luxury car kind of guy and the Chevy Impala or Chevy SS would probably be a better fit for me. But it’s hard not to want a new Camaro SS or ZL1. The performance is, to me, just astonishing. Neither of these would be the fastest cars I’ve owned – but they’re pretty close to perfect right out of the showroom.

My problem comes when I see the Mustang GT or GT350. Ever since the 80s I’ve been intrigued by the “5.0” when it pretty much wiped the floor with my Iroc-Zs, Z28s, Firebird Formulas and Trans Ams. Though I did have a highly modified Camaro RS that ate ‘em up all the time. But the 5.0 has always been a car I’ve admired.

Nowadays the tides have turned and the Camaro’s are beating up on the Mustangs again – but I’ve never owned a Mustang. So that’s one piece of the puzzle. That one thing alone would never convince me against buying a Camaro over a Mustang. But then you have several other factors that come into play…

Comfort is one. The Mustang feels bigger inside. I haven’t spent time looking over all the specifications – but is the Camaro smaller than the Mustang inside? Especially the back seat. I know these cars aren’t REALLY meant for four passengers – but they’re not two-seaters either. The Camaro feels cramped inside – and the Mustang feels a step up in quality as well.

I’m forty-five years old and I imagine I’m right in the main bracket of customers Chevy and Ford are looking for. Those not old enough to be uncomfortable in a smaller, high performance car – and who can afford them. Pricing has gone so high that most young people can’t afford them like they used to. And parents aren’t buying them for their eighteen year old like they did in the 80s and 90s. And that brings me to another issue.

How did the price of the Camaro get so high? When did that happen? I’m pretty sure this sixth generation went way above and beyond price-wise. I realize the car is very impressive performance-wise – but is it really worth that much more money than the Mustang? Based on performance alone? Mustang has it in comfort, quality and interior dimensions. Right?

So how do you convince somebody who’s in the market for a performance coupe that the Camaro is a better choice than the Mustang? Especially when they don’t have any heavy preference appearance-wise for either car…

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