‘Rocket on wheels’ snagged by police

By Bob Unruh

2016camaro

When the car debuted, the Techmalakblog estimated the top speed of the 2016 Chevrolet SS Camaro – with its 6.2 liter 455 horsepower super-engine, 20-inch wheels and top-rated tires – at 155 miles per hour.

Wrong.

Shawn Padden, a deputy with the Hermantown, Minnesota, police department, explained what he saw when his radar started screaming during a recent DWI saturation patrol not far from Duluth.

“He was going north, or east, toward Two Harbors. … The first speed that came up was 171, then 168 and then 143. When he went by me it was a blur.

“You get used to seeing people going 65 or 70 and what that looks like. But I’ve never seen anything like this. It’s like a rocket on wheels at that point.”

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Padden told the Forum News Service of his encounter with a jet-black sports car on Minnesota Highway 61.

The report said Padden “happened to be right at a crossover and made a hurried U-turn heading for Two Harbors. It was 6:50 p.m.”

“I hit the lights and siren and called it in to the State Patrol. … I had to get my car up to 135 just to get close enough for him to see my lights on,” he reported.

The driver, a 36-year-old man from Lakeside, Minnesota, stopped right away, he said.

That was good, Padden said, because “we’d probably be in Canada right now.”

The driver got a “coupon” for misdemeanor careless driving, one step above a traffic ticket.

General Motors actually is a little reticent about the car’s performance.

In a press release, it notes the car’s weight has been lowered and its power increased for 2016.

It points out that the Camara SS coupe is “the most powerful Camaro SS ever,” able to go from 0-60 mph in four seconds. It can cover a quarter-mile in 12.3 seconds.

It claims the performance “will challenge many of the iconic muscle cars from the 1960s.”

Al Oppenheiser, chief engineer, said: “The performance numbers only tell half of the story, because the lighter curb weight also makes the new Camaro feel more responsive and agile behind the wheel. It brakes more powerfully, dives into corners quicker, accelerates faster and is more fun to drive than ever.”

Hennessey Performance notes that a few tweaks will take the same car to 202.1 mph.

Their car was driven by Brian Smith at the Continental Tire Proving Grounds in Uvalde, Texas, and was rated at 751 HP.

See the result:

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