A special-edition Chevrolet Camaro Convertible will serve as the official pace car of the 2011 Indianapolis 500. Chevrolet and Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials made the announcement at the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale classic auto auction, where a bidder will have the opportunity to purchase the first of 50 Indianapolis 500 Festival Committee cars.
The 2011 Camaro Convertible is the 22nd Chevrolet chosen to pace â€śThe Greatest Spectacle In RacingÂ®â€ť and the seventh Camaro. Adding to the rich heritage is the fact that 2011 will mark the 100th anniversary of the first Indianapolis 500, as well as the centennial year of Chevrolet.
Chevrolet will donate full proceeds of the auction to the David Foster Foundation, a charity devoted to supporting families with children in need of life-saving organ transplants. David Foster, the 15-time Grammy-winning music producer and songwriter, founded the organization in his native Canada.Â
The pace car, along with the matching festival cars, features a Summit White exterior accented with orange stripes and door graphics. The interior is trimmed in orange leather, including front seat headrests embossed with the Indy 500 logo, along with white door panels and instrument panel trim. The instrument panel trim features extensions of the orange exterior stripes.Â
The color combination is similar to the design used on the 1969 Camaro Indy pace car â€“ replicas of which have become among the most popular Camaros in the collector world.Â
â€śIt's an honor for Chevrolet to pace the 100th anniversary of the Indianapolis 500, especially during this landmark year,â€ť said Chris Perry, vice president of Chevrolet marketing. â€śThis is also a great opportunity for us to build on Camaroâ€™s strong momentum, while supporting an important charity.â€ť
The auction for the commemorative edition pace car takes place Saturday evening, Jan. 22, during SPEEDâ€™s live coverage of the Barrett-Jackson event. The vehicle carries lot number 1284 and bids can be submitted at the auction in person or online by clicking this link for a 2011 absentee bidder registration packet:Â
â€śThe Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Chevrolet name have long been associated with one another beginning with Arthur, Louis and Gaston Chevroletâ€™s participation as competitors in the Indianapolis 500,â€ť said Indianapolis Motor Speedway President and CEO Jeff Belskus. â€śIt is fitting in this 100th year for both brands that we reinforce that relationship through this yearâ€™s Camaro pace car, which resembles what many argue is the most famous pace car in IMS history, the 1969 Camaro. We are looking forward to seeing this car on track, pacing the greatest 33 drivers in the world on May 29.â€ť
Pace car details
Equipped with a 400-horsepower (298 kW) V-8 engine and six-speed automatic transmission, the actual pace car for the race requires no performance modifications to perform its duty in front of the racing field.Â
All 50 of the Festival Committees cars will be SS convertible models fitted with the 2SS equipment package, offering the following standard features:
â€˘ Four-wheel disc brakes with Brembo four-piston calipers and hydraulic assistÂ
â€˘ StabiliTrak electronic stability controlÂ
â€˘ Competitive/sport mode that enhances on-track performanceÂ
â€˘ Performance Launch Control (with the manual transmission) that optimizes hard-acceleration launches for quicker, more consistent performanceÂ
â€˘ Twenty-inch polished aluminum wheels and performance tiresÂ
â€˘ Head-up instrument displayÂ
â€˘ Center console with auxiliary gauge package.
Along with the 2SS equipment, the cars feature the RS package, which includes HID headlamps and unique tail lamps.