There’s an old-if-incorrect saying that goes, “never bring a knife to a gun fight.” Truthfully, the outcome of a gun versus knife confrontation depends on a lot of different factors, but here’s something to consider: there’s always a chance that a shooter will miss, even at close range. There’s very little chance that someone armed with a knife will miss. The moral to the story, then, is that it’s best to never underestimate an opponent, no matter what he’s bringing to the party.
Such is the case with Motor Trend’s latest “Head 2 Head” video, which stacks the new Camaro ZL1 up against last year’s Boss 302 Laguna Seca edition. We’re not sure why Motor Trend chose the Boss 302 instead of the Shelby GT500, since the Boss gives up some 136 horsepower and 176 pound-feet of torque to the Camaro ZL1, but perhaps it was simply a case of having the Boss 302 in the garage. In any case, think of the Camaro as the .45 caliber handgun, while the Mustang Boss 302 is the boot knife.
On paper, it seems like no contest until you start to look at the numbers more closely. Sure, the ZL1 has more power, but it also weighs some 413 pounds more. That’s a lot of mass to carry into a corner, then accelerate out, so the number of corners will likely have an effect on the race’s outcome. On the other hand, the Camaro’s four-wheel-independent suspension gives it a distinct advantage over the Mustang’s live axle on a bumpy track.
In the end, the gun won this particular fight, but not by the margin you may have expected. The Camaro ZL1 lapped in 1:41.3, while the Boss 302 Laguna Seca lapped in 1:43.7. This round goes to the Camaro, but we can’t wait to see the ZL1 stacked up against the next generation, 650-horsepower Shelby GT500.