Meyer says, “we can’t discuss power levels at this time, as the final shipping weight and horsepower factor have not been determined.” We have our own opinions on power levels but will keep them to ourselves. Information that is known shows the 427ci combination has been slated for A Stock while the supercharged bullet will push the COPO into the AA Stock category. “The NHRA has been fully aware of this program from day one. They have been great to work with and have been extremely supportive. The COPO Concept was reviewed with NHRA leadership and their technical staff at several points during the build,” Meyer says, regarding our inquiry to NHRA’s awareness of the project. Chevy’s discussions with Stock Eliminator’s sanctioning body shows how serious the team is to putting this product in national competition.
Feeding the hungry LS engines is a job for Aeromotive, which designed a complete fuel system specifically for this application. A trunk-mounted fuel cell is home to its A1000 fuel pump. The pump is submerged in the cell for noise control and cooling effects. Our inside man at Aeromotive also informed us that if the COPO is a go then expect to see an Eliminator pump in the cell instead of the A1000. The Aeromotive kit is one of many forthcoming products that could hit the consumer market through the GM Performance Parts catalog if COPO makes it to dealer floors.
Moving past the subtle—but strong—graphics reveals that Chevy went right to a serious race car builder for this unit, Mike Pustelny Racing. The Michigan-based shop, affectionately known as MPR Race Cars, is a fixture in the Stock and Super Stock ranks, making it the obvious choice due to location and veteran experience in those ranks. A full ’cage that is SFI certified to 8.50 times resides in the interior as do lightweight seats and a full complement of Chevy-branded Auto Meter gauges. The rear seat has been deleted and finished off in a clean manner. The car is all business and if the production COPO is like the “other guy’s” then there is no need for fine comfort amenities as it won’t be legal to register for street use. The COPO will be a 100 percent purebred race car and this concept doesn’t make a secret of that fact.
One of the cool aspects of a program like COPO is the trickle-down effect for the average street enthusiasts. Meyer confirms, “nothing from this program has been designed for street use, but the average enthusiast will be able to look forward to an entire new engine program, a straight-axle conversion, a fuel system, front and rear drag racing suspensions, and dozens of other small parts that will help turn the Camaro into a capable drag racing platform.” The suspension system on the Camaro was sourced through Strange Engineering and the live-axle replaces the breakage-prone IRS. Strange provided the shocks, both sets are double adjustable for optimum performance. The company also manufactures the S9 solid rear axle that is filled with an aluminum centersection, 35-spline axles and spool, and a 4.10:1 gearset.