Having a true 50/50 weight balance, more grip than power, great brakes, taut suspension, and aggressive (arguably good) looks are pretty much the keystones of a great sports car in this day and age. The Camaro Turbo 1LE delivered on all of those in spades. That car was introduced for the 2019 model year, and just as it was approaching its third birthday, Chevy hacked it from the lineup.
With a 275 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque turbocharged four cylinder, an available 6-speed manual, and too-cool-for-school good looks, the Camaro starts at just $25,995, and the $4,500 1LE pack imbued the car with an excellent track package with larger sway bars, specially tuned dampers, stiffer subframe bushings, and “cross-axis ball joints” for the rear tow links, which GM says “enhance lateral stiffness.” It also got stickier Goodyear rubber, Brembo stoppers, sport and track drive modes, and a flat-bottom steering wheel. A true gem in the Camaro lineup.
If you were looking for cheap trackday fun, there wasn’t much on the market to deliver as much fun-for-money as the 1LE Camaro Turbo. There was also a V6 option available if you wanted a little bit more naturally aspirated from your track car, but now the V6 1LE is dead, too!
Autoblog confirmed the devastating news from Chevrolet, which sent them this quote: “Chevrolet is retiring the Turbo 1LE and V6 1LE from the Camaro line when model year 2021 concludes in order to produce more in-demand models like the LT1, which has risen to be nearly a quarter of Camaro sales since hitting showrooms in model year 2020. The Camaro SS 1LE and ZL1 1LE track stars will continue with nationwide availability into model year 2022.”
I will personally miss the Turbo 1LE. It might be time to pick one of these up on the used market, because I don’t think any automaker will ever build anything quite like this again. I mean, I guess you can still get a Mustang Ecoboost with the High Performance Pack. It’ll cost almost thirty-five grand, but it’s still an option.