Numbers Matching Z28: 1980 Chevrolet Camaro Z28

After coming off a record sale high in 1979, the 1980 Camaro brought Chevrolet crashing back to Earth. In 1979 Chevrolet managed to sell 282,000 cars across the Camaro range. In 1980, the total was a mere 152,000, which represented a 47% sales drop in a single year. Of this 1980 sales total, 45,137 were the Z28 version, and it is one of these cars that we are looking at today. You will find the Z28 located in Decatur, Georgia, and listed for sale here on eBay. At the time of writing, bidding has reached $7,400, but the reserve hasn’t been met.

The owner says that the Camaro is original, except for a single repaint. He doesn’t specify when this was performed, but the paint does look to be quite good, and fairly fresh. I can’t see any obvious signs of rust, or dings or dents in the limited number of exterior photos that the owner provides. One interesting thing to note is that the car is also fitted with what the factory options list refers to as the “removable glass roof panels.” This was a $695 option when the car was new, which was not cheap. However, 24,816 people chose to tick that particular box in 1980.

The interior is where the Camaro is beginning to show its age, but at least it does appear to be largely complete. There are a few minor knobs and pieces that have fallen off over the last 38-years, but these are items that should be able to be replaced both easily and cheaply. The entire interior could really just do with a refresh, but the dash pad is beyond that and would need to be replaced. Given how much vehicle manufacturers were battling with the quality and longevity of plastic trim pieces during this era, I think that the interior has actually held up quite well.

The days of the fire-breathing Z28 seemed to be nothing but a distant memory by the time this Z28 rolled off the production line. The 350ci V8 fitted to the 1980 model produced 190hp, which many people found to be disappointing. The one in this car is original. In fact, this is a full, numbers-matching car. Bolted to the back of that 350 is a 4-speed manual transmission, while the Camaro is also fitted with power steering, power brakes, and air conditioning. Overall, the car seems to be in quite reasonable mechanical health, but there are one or two issues that will need to be addressed. There is an oil leak somewhere in the engine, which the owner believes may be coming from a valve cover gasket. There is also a vibration from the rear end at highway speed. The rest of it seems to be okay.

The owner makes a bold claim that the 1980 Z28 is going up in value, and I am always wary of these sorts of claims from a seller. I’ve had a look back over sales history and results for the past 10-years, and values for immaculate examples have been fluctuating wildly during that time. However, if you look at mid-range examples such as this one, or cars that would require a full restoration, this claim actually does seem to be true. The rises haven’t been dramatic, but they have been consistent. If those trends continue, then this Camaro could be a good investment.

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Comments

  1. Ramone

    Close the hood for the pictures! Just sayin’ .

    Like 4
  2. Superdessucke

    To put the 1979 Camaro sales into perspective, Honda sold 291,000 Accords last year, roughly the same volume. So you could imagine that Camaros were absolutely everywhere.

    Like 2
  3. RoughDiamond

    Somebody on the assembly line did not know how to run a sheet metal screw in straight on a data plate. The car is from Idaho so where are all the underneath pictures?

    Like 3
  4. JoeNYWF64

    It’s astounding how less complex it is under the hood of, say, a ’74 t/a w/o a/c & 49 state no air pump.
    Wonder if chevy considered switching the alternator & a/c compressor on the 2nd gen camaros to shorten the a/c hoses & clean up at least the driver’s side of the motor.

    Like 1
  5. 8banger Dave Mika Member

    Our high-school jock neighbor had an ’81? Berlinetta, and man, did he think he was the cats’ pajamas.

    Like 2
  6. Steve

    Correct me if I am wrong but I thought after 1974-1975 the drivetrains were not matched to the car. Why do people insist on writing their ad’s saying “numbers matching”? The “original motor” is appropriate.

    Like 1
  7. Purple sky

    Had a big recession back in 80-81 I was laid off for 12 months, went back to work . I really think 1979 was the last good year for second gen F bodies… Maybe it was and the recession didn’t help either. Just an opinion.

  8. TimM

    Nice car good bones!! It looks like it’s been taken care of!! I hope it doesn’t have a stupid high (I want to retire after this sale) reserve!!!

  9. H_Vaughn

    Had an ‘80 with a cammed 350 and “off-road fire prevention pipes.” These handled and rode nicely on dry pavement. The doors are armored car heavy and chew through hinges like popcorn.

  10. miike

    does anyone know how many 1980 zs were built with a 4 spd?

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