The Camaro was Chevrolet's ultimate answer to Ford’s wildly successful Mustang, which debuted in 1964. The Mustang led the charge for a whole field of “pony cars”—reasonably priced and highly stylized compact cars with “muscle car” high-performance engines. Chevy’s first pony car, the Corvair, released for model year 1965, didn’t make a dent. But the Camaro, released for model year 1967, had legs.

This zippy pony car, employing GM’s new F-body platform, was offered in a wide variety of six-cylinder and V-8 engines and as a convertible, and it quickly sold 220,000 units in a year. In a few short years, the Camaro overtook the Mustang as the sales leader.

Ironically, early Camaros were based on the less-exciting Chevy Nova body, chassis, and mechanical package. GM’s innovative design chief Bill Mitchell grumbled that he never cared for the first generation, saying they were “no damn good—too many people involved.”

Still, Mitchell gave the top-line late 1960s Camaros, which came with a powerful Z28 engine and suspension package, elegant curving fenders and a duck-tail rear spoiler. More than 96,000 Camaro SS (Super Sport) and more than 143,000 Camaro RS (Rallye Sport) models were made for the first generation, and they are among the most collectible cars today.

For the car's second generation, Mitchell got to design a Camaro to his exacting standards. Debuting mid-way through model year 1970, this Camaro was only released as a coupe, with a lean, curvaceous “Coke bottle” body and a dedicated chassis with monocoque construction. (GM’s Pontiac division produced a clone named the Firebird that had a different engine and front end.)

While even the Z28s were less powerful than the early '60s models, these second-generation Camaros was seen as perfection: The body remained unaltered—other than changes to the nose to meet new safety regulations—for 11 years, and GM sold nearly 2 million of them.

The third generation of Camaros arrived in 1982 with an updated hatchback body and fuel-injection. This angular and very American four-seater sports coupe was almost 500 pounds l...

These cars became so tied to rock ’n’ roll culture that punk band The Dead Milkman wrote a satire song called “Bitchin’ Camaro,” which appeared on their 1985 album, “Big Lizard in My Backyard,” and opens with a rambling improv between two lunkhead heavy metal fans.

The high-performance IROC-Z edition, named for the International Race of Champions, appeared in 1985, with a 5.7-liter 220 bhp injected V-8. This Camaro was sold along with the Z-28, the LT (Luxury Touring), and the base-model V-6 sports coupe. Then, in 1987, all four Camaro editions were also offered as convertibles.

Right away, the magazine “Collectible Automobile” declared the convertible IROC an instant classic, saying, “Even taking the rough ride and lousy gas mileage into consideration, the IROC-Z convertible is a blue-chip investment. Buy one now and enjoy it, take meticulous care of it, and it will return more than its original price somewhere down the road, and likely sooner than most people think. If history is a guide, demand will soon exceed supply."

The LT and Z28 were dropped in 1988, leaving the IROC and base models, which were very attractive, cleanly styled Camaros. In '89, the base got the RS (Rallye Sport) tag, as well as more dramatic bodywork so it more closely resembled the IROC. The IROC got an upgrade for its wheels and tires, and a 240 bhp engine. In 1991, Chevy ended its sponsorship of the International Race of Champions, and had to give up that moniker. The IROC-Z became the Z28.

The fourth generation of Camaro was produced from 1993 to 2002, before they fell out of favor and GM ended their 35-year production run, but in 2010, the Camaro line was revived to ride once again.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Sean O’Connor’s reference site on the Chevrolet Camaro boasts hundreds of high resolution photos as well as som… [read review or visit site]

Jim Snell’s tribute to the 1959 Chevy Impala and other Chevrolets (Bel Air, Two-Ten Wagon, etc.) from the 1950s a… [read review or visit site]

Hemmings Auto Blogs

Hemmings Auto Blogs

This great (and frequently updated) blog from the folks at Hemmings Motor News is a visual feast of old and new pho… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Chevrolet : Camaro Z28 1969 69 Camaro Z28 Dz302 Survivor Hurst 4 Speed Numbers Car Chambered ExhaustChevrolet : Camaro Rs/ss 1969 Camaro Rs/ss #s Matching Gm Of Canada Documented Feature Magazine CarChevrolet : Camaro Z28 1969 Camaro Z28 Restored And Low Original MilesChevrolet : Camaro Z28 Coupe 2-door Rare 1974 Chevrolet Camaro Lt1 Z28Chevrolet : Camaro White/red 1969 Chevrolet Camaro Trye Survivor!!!!!!look!!!Chevrolet : Camaro Ss-convertible 2014 Camaro Ss Reserve.6.2l/leather/camera/heated/20's/onstar/Chevrolet : Camaro Super Sport 1969 Chevy Camaro Ss 350, Auto, Fathom Green W/ Black Int, Beautifully Restored!Chevrolet : Camaro Copo Coupe 2013 Copo Camaro #30 Out Of 69 427 Manual BlackChevrolet : Camaro Rs/ss Camaro Pace Car 396 4-speed Real Deal CarChevrolet : Camaro Ss, R/s 1969 Camaro Ls1 Ls Pro TouringChevrolet : Camaro Pro Touring 1968 Chevy Camaro Pro-touring, Restored With Airide And 383 Stroker. No Reserve!Chevrolet : Camaro Z/28 1969 Chevy Camaro Z28 Matching Numbers Drivetrain Protecto Plate/broadcast SheetChevrolet : Camaro Rs/ss 1967 Chevrolet Camaro Rs/ss Turbo 400 3 Speed Automatic. Electric Blue. Looker!!Chevrolet : Camaro Pro Street Custom One Of A Kind 1967 Pro Touring Custom Show Quality Camaro 1000hpChevrolet : Camaro 1967, Solid, Great Running And Driving!Chevrolet : Camaro Z/28 1978 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28,factory 4 Speed,white,red Interior 350, Must See!!!!!Hot Wheels 1995 Treasure Hunt # 3 Of 12 '67 CamaroChevrolet : Camaro Coupe 2-door 1967 Chevy Camaro Rs Rpo L-30 True Survivor! 100 % UnrestoredChevrolet : Camaro Rally Sport 1969 Rs Camaro X11 350 Southern Car Rust Free Original MetalChevrolet : Camaro 350 1968 Chevy Camaro Ss Badges 350 V8 W 350 Trans Lemans Blue W Black InteriorChevrolet : Camaro Base Coupe 2-door 1969 CamaroHot Wheels 1995 Treasure Hunt 67 Camaro Wow Excellent Condition Rlc Hw Rr RareChevrolet : Camaro 1969 Chevy Camaro Rs 427 (l72 512 Block) Muncie 4 Speed 12 Bolt Frame Off RestoChevrolet : Camaro Z- 28 Rally Sport 1969 Camaro Z-28 Rally SportChevrolet : Camaro Resto Mod 1967 Camaro Resto Mod Frame Up Restoration Ready For Barrett JacksonChevrolet : Camaro Rs/ss 1969 Rs/ss Convertible Tuxedo Black ,big BlockChevrolet : Camaro 1968 Camaro Blown Big Block 1968 Blown Big BlockChevrolet : Camaro 1969 Chevy Camaro Ss X55 Vintage Ac Ps Pdb Factory Bb Car 18" 20" Wheels BargainChevrolet : Camaro Resto Rod Restorod, Big Block 454, 4 Speed Manual, Air Con, Modern Suspension, Disc BrakesChevrolet : Camaro Ss 350 1969 Rs/ss Convertible Camaro Pace CarChevrolet : Camaro 2 Door Coupe 1967 Chevy Camaro Coupe, All Original With Matching Numbers, 327-210hp, AtChevrolet : Camaro Rs 1969 Camaro Ls3 / 600 Hp Protouring Resto Mod Super Car - 1967 1968Chevrolet : Camaro Z28/ Rs 1972 Camaro Pro-touring 100k Show Car, 25k Airbrush, 383 70 Pics, None Nicer!!!!Chevrolet : Camaro Z/28 1969 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 Real "x77" Unrestored, Orig Interior, #'s CorrectAurora T-jet #1388 Chevrolet Camaro Blue ! Beautiful Original No Reserve ! Chevrolet : Camaro Watch Video 67 Camaro R/s Convertible Hugger Orange Hounds ToothChevrolet : Camaro Watch Video 67 Camaro 454 4 Speed Baldwin Motion Clone Sweet Rs Rare Muscle CarChevrolet : Camaro Baldwin Motion 1969 Baldwin Motion 427 Tribute 427 Crate Motor Showroom Condition RestoreChevrolet : Camaro Ss Convertible 2-door 2011 Convertible Banshee Ta Conversion 6.2l Turbo ChargedChevrolet : Camaro Chrome 1967 Chevrolet Camaro,hugger Orange 4 Spd.1:18 Gmp 1967 George Follmer/team Penske Chevy Camaro Z28, Sunoco No 16, # 13022Chevrolet : Camaro Convertible 1968 Chevrolet Camaro Ss ConvertibleChevrolet : Camaro Ss 396 1969 Chevy Camaro Ss 396~x55~pro Touring Resto Mod~turbo 400 Trans~teak WheelChevrolet : Camaro Rs Split Bumper 1970 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 Rs Split Bumper Lt1 Restored Show CarHot Wheels Redlines Custom Camaro GreenMpc Harrell's 1969 Camaro Funny CarMpc Camaro Super Stocker 1-2751Chevrolet : Camaro Ss Macneish Certified Camaro Ss L78 396/375 Hp 4 SpeedMonogram 1985 1:8 Scale Camaro Iroc-z Chevrolet : Camaro Watch Video 68 Camaro Rare 4 Speed Corvette Bronze Gorgeous MuscleChevrolet : Camaro Ss Street Custom 2011 Chevrolet Camaro Ss 6-speedTeam Associated Rc10ds Dual Sport Big Red Camaro Vintage R/c Pro TouringChevrolet : Camaro Ss 11 Camaro Ss 16k 750hp 30k Build After Sale! 78mm Turbo Forged InternalsChevrolet : Camaro Ss/rs 1969 Chevrolet Camaro Rs/ssChevrolet : Camaro Copo Zl-1 1969 Copo Zl-1 Camaro!Chevrolet : Camaro Z28 Ss Convertible 2-door 2002 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 Ss Convertible 2-door 5.7l2013 Hot Wheels Mexico 6th Convention '67 Camaro 23/25Chevrolet : Camaro 1lt 2012 1lt Used 3.6l V6 24v Automatic Convertible Onstar1968 All Original Hot Wheels Redline " Brown " Custom CamaroVaterra 1/10 2012 Chp Chevrolet Camaro Zl-1 Almost Rtr 2.4ghz V100 Vtr03012 Ae