Testing is ongoing. "The eCOPO Concept is all about where we go in the future with electrification in the high-performance space", said Russ O'Blenes, director, Performance Variants, Parts and Motorsports at General Motors.
To honor the original COPO almost half a century away, Chevrolet is showing at SEMA 2018 in Las Vegas the 2019 COPO Camaro, an anniversary-themed model that opens up next year's drag racing customization program. That powerful motor channels power to the standard COPO rear axle through a race-prepped "Turbo 400" transmission.
Engineers estimate that the eCOPO will travel the drag strip somewhere in the 9-second range, giving an even more generous prediction than initially expected, perhaps giving some competition to the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon.
Somehow, he did it, and the COPO Camaro was born in 1969.
The chief advantage of 800-volt battery systems is that they can accept a faster charge (and produce more power) than lower-voltage systems.
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Four battery packs weighing 175 pounds each are mounted near the back of the rear-wheel-drive vehicle to give it better traction off the line and use next-gen 800-watt technology, twice what today's electric cars use, for quicker charging and discharging. With the racing team's assistance, more than a dozen students participated in the development and assembly of the electrified drag auto.
That figure is on par with other automakers developing electric cars with 800-volt battery systems, such as the Porsche Taycan (nee Mission E) and the Aston Martin RapideE. Additionally, the roll cage in the trunk area has been expanded to provide additional protection for the rear-mounted modules. As a result, Chevy claims the eCOPO Camaro has a 44-56 weight bias that helps it get off the line faster.
The motor has the same bell housing mounting pattern and crankshaft flange as the LS family of V8s, meaning any gearbox that fits an LS should fit the eCOPO motor. The team also worked with Bothell High School's automotive technology program in Seattle, with multiple students contributing to the development and assembly of the concept.
The motor assembly is created to bolt directly to most GM automatic transmissions. Unlike many electric cars that use direct drive, this one is a true swap with the motors installed under the hood and connected to the COPO's three-speed automatic transmission.
The eCOPO Camaro concept has had its V8 engine traded for a twin electric motor pack that generates 700 hp and 600 lb-ft of torque.