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With the arrival of summer and in honour of that beloved bittersweet beverage, lemonade, from now until fall, we shall present a look back at some of the most memorable lemons of yesteryear on a weekly basis. Yes, we missed a week, but give us a break, will ya? We're talking design disasters, marketing misfits, engineering errors and aesthetic abominations. In short, a car owner's nightmare but a technician's dream come true.
Without further ado, let's all collectively hold our noses as we present the wimpiest Camaro ever conceived: the 1982 Chevrolet Camaro Iron Duke. These days, the resurrected Camaro is receiving reams of favourable publicity as Chevy's iconic pony car once again rolls off the assembly line after being unceremoniously axed in 2002.
Over the course of the Camaro's original 35-year run, there were superb models in terms of power and style as well as a few lame ducks. But surely the most embarrassing Camaro of all time has to be the 1982 Iron Duke.
With such a powerful and royal moniker, you'd think something called the Iron Duke would be a fire-breathing performance Camaro along the lines of a Z28 or an SS. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Rather, in 1982, GM did the unthinkable: it produced a Camaro with a 2.5-litre, 4-cylinder engine mated to an anaemic three-speed transmission.
Bad enough this generation of the Camaro (1982-'92) will forever remain the least appealing model run thanks to a bland design that hasn't aged well. But with such a wimpy four-banger under the hood generating just 90-horsepower, the Iron Duke had about as much gusto and pizzazz as an iron lung.
Oh, the shame of it all. An '82 Iron Duke owner would never dare take on the Mustangs of the day - even the six-cylinder ones. Instead, he'd have to set his sights on more manageable prey such as a Chrysler K-car. "Eat my dust, grandma!" the Iron Duke owner would yell as his emasculated Camaro would zoom from 0 to 60 mph in 20 seconds.
Today, would-be owners of the gorgeously retro 2010 Camaro must choose between an exhilarating V6 that generates 304-horsepower and a fearsome V8 that delivers 426 ponies. Thankfully, the Iron Duke remains deader than disco.