It’s safe to say that Chevrolet is more than just one of the most storied automakers in the world. Its classic bow tie logo is as easy to recognize as any corporate logo out there. And for the past century (give or take a few years), it’s been woven into the fabric of American culture. General Motors’s dominance may have ebbed and flowed in the market, but Chevrolet has remained its tent-pole brand.
Over the years, Buick, Oldsmobile, Pontiac, and Cadillac all held varying roles in the GM hierarchy, but not Chevy. Since the beginning, it’s been the car for everybody. As a result, you’d be hard pressed to find a family anywhere in America that hasn’t owned at least one.
And while millions and millions of Chevrolets — including Impalas, Malibus, and Silverados — largely kept the lights on over the years, the company also built up a one-of-a-kind position in the performance car world. Between the Corvette (America’s sports car, if you’re a fan), the Camaro (with its ubiquitous small block V8 engines), and a number of other fast cars, the Bowtie Brand has offered generations of gearheads reliable, easy to modify, world-class performance for almost any budget.
Looking back over its illustrious history, we began putting together a list of the fastest cars ever built by Chevy. The ones that made it just might surprise you. We didn’t include one-offs, concepts, or racers (so no COPO cars, CERV IIIs, or 1969 ZL-1s), and unfortunately even the hottest Chevelles, Novas, Impalas, and El Caminos failed to make the cut. Still, we don’t think you’d want to kick any of these 15 out of your garage.