After two years of tantalizing teases, rudely interrupted by GM's unplanned bankruptcy, the production version of the 2011 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible goes public at the 2010 Los Angeles Auto Show. Save for swapping the Coupe's hard shell for a power-activated fabric soft top, this striking open-air variant retains virtually all of the Camaro's key exterior and interior styling cues as well as its basic packaging and features roster. To ensure it also retains all of the Camaro Coupe's handling character, Chevy engineers also incorporated a series of structural enhancements---changes that reportedly give the car greater torsional stiffness than a BMW 3 Series Convertible.

Although dropping the well-fitted and acoustically lined one-touch top on this new Camaro does trim trunk space from 11.3 to a still very usable 10.2 cu ft, it stores neatly beneath a nicely-finished one-piece flat-plastic tonneau that easily snaps into place to give the car a tidier appearance when running in al fresco mode.

As expected, the 2011 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible also shares its powertrain elements with the Coupe. The base model gets its motivation from GM's 312-horsepower/3.6-litre direct-injected V6 while and the hotter SS version fitted with Chevy's 426-horse/6.2-liter V8. A six-speed manual transmission will be standard issue in both, with a six-speed automatic as an option. Still no confirmation as to whether we'll see a Z28 version of this new Camaro sunrunner. But with the new 550-plus-horsepower supercharged Z28 Coupe and some major interior tweaks due for model year 2012, this appears to be merely the start of any number of bigger and better things slated to arrive within the next 12 months.

"The Convertible will make the all-new Camaro, already a smash-hit, even more desirable to a greater range of drivers," says Chris Perry, vice president of Chevrolet Marketing. The 2011 Camaro Convertible is set to arrive in dealers starting in February. While complete pricing information will be released closer to on-sale date, Chevy has confirmed that it will have a base sticker price of $30,000.


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