Muscle Car Debrief: Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 vs Dodge Challenger Hellcat Redeye vs Chevy Camaro ZL1

Read all the performance figures, specs, and notes from our test team here:

In this video, Carlos Lago, Elana Scherr and Kurt Niebuhr answer the most common questions about our muscle car drag race and comparison videos. Questions like, "Why didn't you use the Demon?" and "Why didn't you run on a prepared surface?" and "Why did a two-seat Mustang win a utility award?" and "Why are you all so bad at driving?"

And yes, we misspelled Camaro. That's the joke.

2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500

The Shelby GT500 is a high-performance version of the Mustang coupe available in a single trim level. Essentially, a track-ready, street-legal Mustang, it has many performance features not available on the standard-issue car.

At a distance, the GT500 looks like a Mustang that's been rushed through a speed shop with bad taste and unrestricted access to hastily made CAD files. But look closer and you'll see that the wide fenders, enormous grille and rear wing spoiler have a real purpose: to harness the speed generated by the latest 760 horsepower.

Shelby GT500 Review:

2019 Dodge Challenger Hellcat Redeye

There aren't a lot of vehicles we consider to be muscle cars. The 2019 Dodge Challenger, with its outlandish horsepower and classic styling, certainly qualifies. Muscle cars are also known for their lack of practicality, but the Challenger bucks that trend by making fewer sacrifices in everyday usability thanks to its large trunk and relatively spacious rear seats.

The new 797-hp SRT Hellcat Redeye is basically the retired Demon but with a slightly detuned V8 and less drag-race-specific hardware. There are also some changes in the supporting trims. All-wheel drive is now available on the base SXT, the Widebody treatment is offered on the R/T Scat Pack, and a new dual-snorkel hood increases Hellcat output by 10 hp. Some trims also come with fewer standard features and corresponding price drops.

Challenger Hellcat Redeye Review:

2019 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

The 2019 Chevrolet Camaro has been refreshed, with new fascias, front and rear lights, and some tweaks to trim-level equipment lists. But the only quality-of-life improvement is the upgrade to Chevy's newest and quickest infotainment system, the aptly named Chevrolet Infotainment 3. Nothing that makes the Camaro a tremendous performer and rewarding car to drive has changed, but nothing that makes it an unappealing choice for daily living has changed either.

Spend any time behind the wheel of a Camaro, and you'll quickly realize it's sharper and more purposeful than its American muscle car rivals, especially when equipped with the 1LE package — an assortment of performance upgrades meant to improve handling, steering and braking. For 2019 models, Chevy has expanded the 1LE offering, making it available with all three engine options, including the turbocharged 2.0-liter.

The 2019 Camaro ZL1 has a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 (650 hp, 650 lb-ft), a six-speed manual transmission (a 10-speed automatic is optional) and launch control. All of the 2SS and SS 1LE extras, minus the cosmetic differences, are also included. The ZL1 1LE Extreme Track Performance package adds 19-inch forged aluminum wheels with wider tires, special race-oriented suspension dampers, carbon-fiber hood and rear spoiler, and tinted taillights. With the ZL1 1LE package, a fixed rear seat is also available.

Camaro ZL1 Review:

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