Bronze Over Gold: 1970 Chevrolet C20 Camper Special

Classic trucks have been growing in popularity lately, and examples like this 1970 Chevrolet C20 Camper Special are no exception.  For sale here on Craigslist in Vancouver, Washington for $5950, this truck looks like a relatively affordable entry point to classic-vehicle ownership.

The second generation of GM’s C/K trucks was introduced in 1967 and was designed to be much more modern in appearance than the first generation trucks.  With the introduction of the second generation trucks, GM also began adding some comfort and convenience features.  While many of these trucks came equipped with coil-sprung rears for comfort, this particular example utilizes leaf springs, likely so it’ll be better able to handle camper-hauling duties.

I think these are some of the best-looking pickups ever made – they combine sleek styling with classic good looks.  This particular example sports a bronze paint job and a gold seat.  I haven’t shopped for a new GM truck lately, but I’m guessing that’s not a combination one can find today at a Chevy or GMC dealer.  In addition to its fabulous color scheme, this truck is equipped with a 402ci big block V8 engine.  While it probably won’t win many drag races, it should generate enough torque to pull some small stumps.

The seller says this truck is mostly original, with the exception of the wheels and stereo.  I’d also question the originality of the Edelbrock intake and Holley carb.  But those nitpicks aside, this looks like a pretty clean, mostly original truck.  Based on the services the truck recently received, it sounds like the truck may have been sitting idle until recently, which would be consistent with the claimed 72,000 original miles.  I’d want to do my due diligence in researching that mileage claim, though, as the seat has plenty of wear on the driver’s side.  If this truck is as described, though, I think the seller’s ask is well within reason.

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  1. Jim

    C20s are also coil sprung, ride quality is better than many half ton trucks

    • Arthur

      Most of the C-10 and C-20’s of this era were rear coil springs with trailering arms. However, it was an option to get leaf springs. I have a 71 C-10 with factory leaf springs. It is an option listed on the SPID (sticker applied to the inside glove compartment door showing options on the truck).

  2. Krindall

    I cant find a thing wrong with this, other than it being too far away from me. I never liked those rims but they seem to work here. I also remember when almost every truck had a camper shell, pretty rare sight now

    • Pete

      Kinda crazy but you’re right, just don’t see the camper shells like you used to. Was totally common up till what? maybe 20 years ago. Nice truck.

    • Barzini

      I recently bought a used truck with a camper shell. I sold the shell on the first day I owned the truck. Tonneau covers may be the reason that they’ve become less popular over time.

  3. jw454

    With that engine, those two extra gas tanks are going to come in real handy. This was designed when gas was 39.9 cents a gallon. My ’70 was a 350 and it got between 8~10 M.P.G. This may do better than that but, not much.
    Neat looking truck though.

  4. doug

    This truck should already be sold, good deal for a good truck.

  5. canadainmarkseh Member

    A question to ask yourself if you bought this for $6k and a new one is $50k or more. And it’s gas mileage will be better but significantly better how long would you get to drive this truck before you hit even on the total cost compared to a new one driven the same distance? I would hazard to guess 10 years of driving. But because its a classic truck and you want to take care of it, so in bad wether you use your beater Pontiac 6000. Now how long do you think it will take for the two trucks to reach egual cost. I drive an older dodge diesel and my total yearly expenses are around $3k I think I’m going to need a lot of years of driving to catch up to a new truck owner who is shelling out $10 k+ a year just in payments. Nice truck I had the GMC version same colour same year, it was one of the best vehicles I ever owned.

    • Howard A Member

      That’s true. I’m kind of struggling with that right now with my ’77 Jimmy. Something is clearly wrong, as it seems to get even worse mileage now.( maybe 7?) Should I invest in a more efficient carb, for almost $400 bucks? That buys a lot of gas, to what, maybe get another couple mpg’s out of it? Just not designed to be fuel-efficient, no matter what. I find myself staring at the gas gauge more than the ride itself. Today, we are used to fuel efficient cars, where gas is not a concern, unlike these, where gas will be your primary concern.

      • Miguel

        How much would a throttle body injection system be?

        I don’t know what engine you have, but it is always a good idea for the health of the engine to have a carb that is working correctly, not just for gas mileage.

      • canadainmarkseh Member

        Hi Howard you might consider checking your axle ratios. I would not be surprised if you found 4.11’s if so you should consider 3.75’s it will slow your engine down and improve your top speed. Along with slower engine speeds come high milage. You might find yourself getting 12-15 mpg. Of course we are back the same question is the cost of the work worth the payback at the pump. Just something to think about.

      • Howard A Member

        Hi, thanks. The line sheet on the glove box door indicates it has a 3:70 axle. I’m beginning to think it’s a vacuum advance issue. I’ve got no vacuum when unplugging the dist. hose. That could indeed affect mileage, especially at higher rpm’s. As far as converting to F.I., it can be done, but it wouldn’t be worth it, the 350, 4 barrel was never meant to be an efficient motor. But pull your 33 foot Airstream, that’s where she shines.

  6. Chebby Member

    The price seemed suspiciously cheap, but up close it looks more appropriate. Still a good deal for a solid truck. That driver ate a lot of roadside chili.

  7. Miguel

    I just found this ’69 C/10 here in Mexico, not purchased as of yet, and besides adding A/C I am struggling to see what wheels will look good on it.

    There are so many styles these days.

  8. Miguel

    Here is the engine compartment.

    Somebody has put some work into this truck.

  9. Miguel

    I always look at the tail gate to see if the truck was taken care of.

    People fix the cab but not usually the tail gate.

  10. 68custom

    also has a factory tach but sadly no AC. but at that price a vintage air set up would fit right in! nice truck great price bet it is gone already.

  11. pugsy

    400 BIG BLOCK.

    Learn something new every day.


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