Last week my friend and photographer, Elaine, and I embarked on a challenge with Chevy that would take us through three States in a mere thirty-eight hours. The proposition: take one of Chevrolet’s newest and hottest offerings, the 2016 Camaro, and drive it from New Orleans to Dallas hitting key points of interest along the way. Participating would place us as an integral part of a cross country tour that Chevy was trying to achieve, 48 States, 150 drivers, 160,000 miles all done in 4 weeks.
Always up for a challenge and forever trying to itch my travel bug I was in on first whisper of this opportunity.
We landed in New Orleans mid afternoon and were greeted by the ever friendly GM staff. We checked into our hotel, grabbed some lunch, caught up on some emails and then headed out to the NOLA Indy to meet our new baby; the lighter, more aerodynamic, ergonomic and totally sexy 2016 Chevy Camaro.
Ah, the Camaro, I had
a boyfriend a crush who drove me in one – complete with eagle wings painted on hood – up to Wasaga Beach one beautifully chilled May 2-4. I died for him, his rock and roll edge, his vintage vibe, his subtle power – or maybe it was the car….. Yep, it was the car.
Much has changed since 1999 and his Dad’s refurbished ride. The 2016 version is the 6th generation of it’s kind and though it doesn’t come with eagle wings, it does come with LED lighting, 10 exterior colours, 7 interior – with a body aerodynamically optimized to reduce lift and drag. This baby is at least 200 pounds lighter than the original and once you turn over the engine and hear that purr you’d be hard pressed to not want to hop in.
Before we could get out onto the open road Fancy and I escaped to check out what the famed French Quarter is really like at night.
Like a scene out of a movie, the French Quarter is exactly how I’ve seen it run through my mind the many times I’ve dreamed about going. The air is heavy, laden with humidity and the sweet sticky scent of indulgence. From beignets to booze, this 13 block area oozes a promise for a escape to a jovial place with hedonistic delights. The sound of live music streams from every doorstep and even pops up in the middle of barricaded streets.
We woke early the next morning to a debrief on the car and then hit the open roads. Our first destination, back to the French Quarter for famous beignets at Cafe Du Monde and coffee and a visit to the first pharmacy in America. As we walked through the streets that were just as interesting in the day as night, a river boat played an organ with the tune of a sad flute which set the scene even more perfectly, with a moody eerie Bayou vibe.
Without time on our side we hopped into our whip, stocked up on snacks (die for Central Roast) plugged in Elaine’s phone into the system, entered our destination and Apple Play had us on our way. Now let me just stop here and explain the magic that is Apple Play. A system created by Chevy that once plugged in mirrors your iPhone. Complete with music, text messages and maps. You can have Apple Play read out your texts to you and can even dictate responses – traffic is all the sudden not so much of a burden! PLUS the car comes complete with WIFI. YES, WIFI!!! Play your favourite playlists from Spotify without a worry that you’ll drain your data package. We also found this super helpful because while one of us drove the other could stay connected to home and get work done.
With a quick twirl around Baton Rouge visiting the city center and loving the Gratitude Trian, we then headed on the road again with our destination of Shreveport in our sights and on our google maps. There was a county fair that we couldn’t resist. We are total suckers for a good Ferris wheel.
As the sun began to set we remembered we had yet to book a hotel. Remembering that our car came equipped with OnStar we hit the blue button to see if the system could help. Success! Mike from OnStar booked us into the Shreveport Hilton within minutes without lifting a finger and we were set!
We rolled up to the fair, made a wrong turn and ended up in a private parking lot for ‘the band’. Luckily for us, American’s love an American car and this whip not only got us a coveted (and complimentary) VIP parking spot but snagged us free entrance to the fair!
Our last stop was Dallas. Though there wasn’t a game on we just had to check out the home of the Cowboys!
We had such an awesome time putting the Camaro to the ultimate Road Trip test! Thanks GM for the experience.
To learn more about these sweet rides click HERE!
Photos by Fancy