One Owner 1966 Chevrolet El Camino!

Coming onto the market a couple of years after Ford’s Ranchero, the El Camino lasted until 1987, several years after the Ranchero was sent out to pasture. This one-owner 1966 Chevrolet El Camino can be found here on eBay in Vancouver, Washington with a bid price of just over $7,600.

This is a second-generation El Camino and they were made from 1964 to 1967. Even though the next-gen cars are by far the most popular, the second-generation cars are my personal favorites. This one looks great in the photos but they’re pretty small so it’s hard to tell what the details look like or see the condition of the body. The seller doesn’t mention the condition of the body at all so you’ll have to ask them and/or try to set up an inspection if that’s a concern. Hagerty is at $18,000 for a #3 good condition ’66 El Camino with a 327 so there may be a long way to go on this auction.

The seller mentions that the paint is showing some cracking in spots and it has a new tailgate included due to the original one being dented. They say that this is a barn find / unrestored project / daily driver and I’m not quite sure which of those descriptions best fits this good looking El Camino. I guess all of them do. The bed has been covered since the 1960s and it’s in perfect condition, according to the seller. I’m not sure if I would leave that “canopy” or topper/cap on there, would you?

They say that this is an all-original one-owner car which is pretty amazing. Another amazing thing for me to see is power windows on an El Camino of this vintage! I have never seen power windows on a Chevelle of this era, ever, and seeing them on a “truck” is amazing. I know, it’s the little things that turn me on, but I’m an options guy and I think that it’s cool to see power windows here. The seat is another thing that throws me off, is that original? I can’t imagine that color or pattern being original vinyl, but they say that this vehicle is all-original.

With the rest of the car being so clean, I expected to see a clean engine compartment and a couple of hours of detailing might have helped to kick up the value a bit. There are actually two engines that come with this El Camino. The original 327 cubic-inch V8 was replaced by the current 350 V8, but the original 327 was rebuilt and it comes with the sale. I would change engines asap back to the original 327, but that’s just me. The current 350 runs and drives great, according to the seller. Have any of you owned a second-generation El Camino? Would you keep this car the way it is, or put the rebuilt 327 back in? How about the cap/topper: yea or nay?

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Comments

  1. Howard A Member

    Man, what a sweetheart. Definitely leave the topper on. Like the Ranchero, these have very limited covered space, one of the big problems of these “car/pickups”. It makes the truck much more useful. Fido can bark his fool head off back there. And it’s actually refreshing to see a vehicle “as is”. This is what 55 year old engines look like, not some sterile thing that was never used. Somebody sure scarfed up on dad’s pride. Great find.

    Like 14
    • Boatman Member

      Actually, Howard, That looks like a much younger Goodwrench engine to me.

  2. Doc

    Pull that old cap off. Get a custom tonneau cover made for it.
    The engine compartment is like most 50+ year old people, trying to look good outside until they go to the heart doctor for a stress test and stent to keep it going. Full rebuild would be open heart.. lol

    Like 6
    • On and On On and On Member

      Sorry Howard and Fido, but I’ve got to agree with Doc on this one. Personal preference for sure. The Cheep-O tin top with the tinted panels really kills the lines of this car. My daily driver is a Honda Ridgeline pick-up and I put a three panel folding bed cover on it and it’s purposeful and unobtrusive. Really gives me options for carrying large items or the need for a water resistant cover which actually helps my highway fuel milage. Just saying.

      Like 6
  3. jwzg

    Something doesn’t look right. Wasn’t the oil fill in the front of the engine on small blocks until 1968? I know it was on the 283 in ’66.

    • Steve

      I believe you are correct in the changeover on the oil filler location. The barn finds post mentions that the engine in it now is a 350, not the original engine.

      Like 8
      • jwzg

        #readingcomp

        LOL

        Like 10
  4. FordGuy1972 FordGuy1972 Member

    Those tin caps were for folks on a budget and looked cheap as opposed to fiberglass caps which were higher quality and looked a lot better. Get rid of that ugly cap, it really detracts from the nice lines of this very attractive El Camino. I’m not a fan of a tonneau cover either, another accessory I find unattractive. This is a nice little pickup in a sharp color with a clean interior. You also have the option of swapping the original rebuilt 327 back in or just driving it as is. I prefer Rancheros but this sharp little truck is tempting.

    Like 8
  5. Don H

    I like it just the way it is , I would save the 327 and just have fun driving it with the 350 🇺🇸

    Like 10
  6. Andrew

    Unless the person who you pay has the same name as the name on the title, it is not a one owner car.

    Like 8
  7. Glenn Schwass Member

    Sweet. Maybe somone with one would like the period tin cap, but I think it would add to the pile of dead truck caps you see behind garages and barns…

    Like 4
  8. 427Turbojet 427Turbojet Member

    2nd gen. definitely my favorite. In high school I bought a ’67, 283 3 spd overdrive ElCamino. I put a mildly built ’69 Chevelle 300 hp 350, 3 angle valve job 1.94 heads, Chet Herbert solid lifter can, Edelbrock Torker with a 650 cfm Holley. Very nice street engine. I needed tuition money for my sophomore year of college and I had more money in the engine than the rest of the car, so I put the 283 back in and sold the Camino to one of my buddies. Within a year, I found a ’66 Camino from Arkansas, 283 powerglide, p/s, power brakes and factory A/C. I put the 350 and a 350 turbo hydro in it, put a ’77 Z28 steering gear and a ’66 Impala tilt and telescope steering column in. Tired of setting valves and cam didn’t match auto trans so I put a L82 Corvette cam and lifters in. Drove it that way for many years, too many in the winter. Now rear lower quarters and interior floor are getting soft. I recently bought a rust free Texas ’66 Camino shell. One of my retirement projects will be to put them side by side and do a renovation, make one out of the two.
    My brother has a ’67 ElCamino, original paint red with black interior 325 hp 396, 400 thm. He’s owned it since 1971.

    Like 10
    • 427Turbojet 427Turbojet Member

      The donor shell/roller. Was also an A/C car. Pretty solid, interior floor has had minor patching. May end up as a 4spd, will add disc brakes. First ElCamino is black/red interior, has original paint, probably will go back to original black.

      Like 4
  9. Comet

    Nice El Camino. Lose the tumor on the back.

    Like 6
  10. gbvette62

    That’s a really nice little El Camino, though I’d have to loose the cap. I prefer a tonneau cover, so I’ve always had a local auto top shop make vinyl tonneau covers for my El Camino’s. Gaylord’s Lids makes some real nice hard fiberglass tonneau covers for El Camino’s, which I’ve been thinking about replacing the vinyl cover on my 71 El Camino with.

    The seat does appear to have been recovered. Though the colors look like they’re correct for the 66 Fawn Beige/Gold El Camino Custom interior, the original seats had four wider pleats, and a vertical chrome emblem in the center of each seat back.

    Personally I prefer the 64-65 and 68-72 El Camino’s, over the 66-67, but I wouldn’t be ashamed to call this one my own.

    Like 3
  11. Tim Janowski Member

    The question of the driver seat being original material, it is not. I have a 66 El Camino same color options and the seat has the standard vynil and striped fabric of the era. Mine came with the original seat but the previous owner painted the door cards, kick panels and dash black. Ordered new from OPG and other sources as the gold, tan, beige coloring is a real S.O.B.to match. Mine has a date correct 396 block etc, except for the heads. I changed to a super T10 from the 3 speed manual with electric overdrive. The rear gear is 410 and not very highway friendly. Lose the tin top and get a cover. Keep the bed chrome.

    Like 2
  12. Ryan Hilkemann

    What a nice topper! Matching color and every thing.

    Like 1
  13. Joe Btfsplk

    The “Topper” gives it that FARM TRUCK look. Loose it and install some chrome reverse with baby moons.

    Like 3
  14. Del

    Nice unit and Find.

    Sell that topper or toss it. Ruins the looks.

    Put the 327 back in.

    Put the 350 in a nice Nova.

    There. My work for the day is done.

    You are welcome 😁

    Like 8
  15. Chris in Pineville

    agree with Del all the way, including how he said it.

    Like 3
    • Ron franks

      I have a 67 that I’ve been restoring for the past year and a half, 283 2bbl, p/s,power disc on front, tilt wheel, factory A/C ,bench seat, each day it gets closer,,,, hopefully it will done by spring,,, color code is KK

      Like 3
  16. JOHN R GOODMAN Member

    I’d like this one to keep company with my 70 SS 396 Elky. I think it would be a hoot to show up at a local cruise night with that top on the car, it would certainly be a topic of conversation! Glad it’s on the left coast or I would be sorely tempted!

    Like 2
  17. TimM

    Great find but the ugly cap has got to go!!! If it were mine anyway!!! Well kept vehicle!!!

    Like 1
  18. petemcgee

    Canopy is a Gem Top manufactured in Sandy, OR. They are galvanized steel and well built, not “cheap-o” by any means. I’ve got a couple on old pickups that are 50 years old and still look like new. That said, I like the classic look better on a 4wd truck than on this El Camino. If you were to leave it on, you’d probably have the only El Camino so equipped at the local Cars N Coffee. I’d have to put the 327 back in and get some red line tires, at least.

    Like 2
  19. Stevieg

    I love this old mullet-mobile! I hate the look but I think I would still keep the topper anyhow to protect the bad and to be a little different.
    Even though I don’t think the seat is real close to being original, I don’t mind it much. I love the power windows and poverty caps! Odd combo!
    I would leave it mechanically as it is & save that original engine for a rainy day. Very nice truck/car/critter lol.

  20. Rowan B

    I understand the listing is expired but I have a 65 I bought a canopy for recently. I have absolutely no factory install hardware for it, and I have some ideas as to how I’ll put it on, but I wanted to know if there are any pictures of how it’s installed. Some people say to take the trim off and bolt it down but if I do, my canopy sits too low and doesn’t meet the roofline. Anything helps!

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