With a platform shared with the successful Chevrolet Nova, a name derived from the French word for “friend” or “comrade,” and a mission to do battle with Ford’s wildly successful Ford Mustang, Chevrolet introduced the stylish 1967 Camaro 2+2 coupe and convertible to fanfare and success both in the showroom and on the race track.
So let’s get a quick, high-level overview of the first-generation Camaro and highlight special editions, so you’ll know which examples are best for you.
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I am the owner of a Canadian delivered 1968 Camaro and have had it since 1970 when i bought it from the original owner, a colleague at the office. It is a SS/RS 396/325hp convertible with 4 speed and posi rear. One of the more interesting regular production options (RPO) was KD1 also known as Air Reactor Delete. This was only for Camaros shipped to Canada and involved removing all of the AIR equipment like the pump/bracket, hoses and exhaust manifold fittings. The engine was timed differently and steel hex head plugs were put into the exhaust manifold where the AIR tube fittings would have been.
All Canadian Camaros also have full importation/production records still available from GM Canada in Oshawa Ontario (used to cost $50) so you can be absolutely certain of how it left Norwood or Van Nuys. Kudos to GM Canada for keeping this database alive.
I purchased a 1968 Camaro SS 350 4-speed new off the dealer's showroom floor in 1968. I have seen the comment several times in "official" articles on '68 Camaro configurations that also stated that the "window" vents on the hood were only for big block cars. I have proof that that comment is wrong. My '68 SS 350 had the "window" vents in the hood from the factory.
Tracking the Indianapolis 500 pace cars and replicas is a bit difficult to do authoritatively, but the folks at CamaroPaceCars.com have summed it up this way.
Approximately 550 Indianapolis 500 Camaro pace car replicas were made, including the cars sent to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for track, 500 Festival, and “brass hat” use. Three specially-prepared 396-powered cars were ordered for use at Indy, though it appears only two were used. All pace cars and replicas were powered by 350 c.i or 396 c.i. engines. Only one of the actual 396/375+hp pace cars survives.
The 1967 Camaro pace car replicas can by identified by the “O-1” or “C-1” codes on the firewall data plate.
Probably the most-recognized first generation Camaro for a good reason, a total of 3,675 Indianapolis 500 pace car replicas were made, including the two actual pace cars (both of which still exist). Of that total, approximately 130 replicas were sent to the Speedway for the 500.
The majority - perhaps 80-85% of the pace car replicas - were powered by the 350 c.i. engine. The rest were powered by the 396.
The 1969 Camaro pace cars received the “Z11” designation on the firewall data plate.
The “Z10” coupes were not officially designated as pace car replicas, but like the 1964.5 Ford Mustang pace car coupes made three years before, they share their respective pace car replicas’ DNA, and are generally included in the Indy pace car history.
Approximately 450-500 Z10s were made. They sported white houndstooth interiors instead of the orange houndstooth in the Z11s.
The Z10s were available only through dealers in the southwest and Tennessee.
It was a rare honor for the Camaro to be given the opportunity to pace the Indianapolis 500 in two years so close together. They continue to have a devoted fan base.
In 2019, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1969 Camaro pace car, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum hosted a Camaro Pace Car Homecoming, drawing over 200 Camaro pace cars of all generations, including the actual surviving 1967 pace car and the two 1969 pace cars.
I've had a bunch of different kinds of cars but one I never did get and it still bothers me at age 68 is a '69 Z/28 especially the RS version. I still love their looks and the sound of that lopey lope 302 solid-lifter camshaft.
I have a 1968 Camaro coupe. It began life as a 6 cylinder, "Grandma" car: 6, 2 speed power-glide automatic; power steering; red with an all white interior. Bright, sporty looks with a convenient size body to park easily.
Now it has a 350 V-8 with a little rumble, making it sound hot. Not so. With a rear end around 2:76 , it goes no where fast, but I can cruise the highway forever.
"SS" emblems and hood; this Camaro, along with any other '67 - 69, will draw thumbs up where ever you may go.
Sporty looks, not like a land yacht; these models will always be popular. If bought correctly, and with minimal maintenance, they will hold their value indefinitely.
Easy on the pocket book, and a smile on your face every time that you go for a drive:
DOES IT GET ANY BETTER THAN THAT?
I think you should check out, but I believe the small-block (L48) didn't use the simulated louvered hood insert from last year. It used the same as the big-blocks (396) featured a squared-off design with four ports per side. I bought a SS 350 in 1970, it was used but I am sure everything was original. It had the four ports just like the big blocks. Thanks Del
Looks like our comments about a specific vehicle sold at auction got moved to a new article about a buyer's guide. My other comment applies only to the article about rising auction prices for some vehicles.
When I was a kid, a family friend had a 1968 Z/28, black with the white stripes. I sure hope he kept it, as he may have owned one of the best Camaros ever. Going on a ride in it definitely helped stoke my passion for cars, especially performance-oriented.
At first glance, this seems like quite an impressive investment. Upon closer look, though, this owner may have just about broken even. Assuming the car was purchased at MSRP, and given their popularity at the time, it's highly unlikely it was purchased for less than MSRP, and allowing for some other costs such as insurance as well as auction fees, in the end, the owner had a car he could look at but not touch (drive) for 12 years. The same money invested in the S&P 500 would have yielded about the same result. Of course, if he was a fan of Disney, Netflix, Google, Apple or a number of other stocks, he could have bought this car now with a tiny fraction of the money he made. 🙂
My point is, buy a car to enjoy, not to speculate on it hopefully being worth enough in the future to break-even or profit. Unless your car was produced in the hundreds (and not tens or hundreds of thousands), it's not likely to be some magical profit unicorn in the future.