Parked In ’88: 1968 Chevrolet Camaro SS 396

For some strange reason, this Camaro was parked in 1988. Perhaps fuel prices had gotten too high or maybe it was too expensive to insure? Those really aren’t good reasons to cage up a beast like this for over 30 years though! There’s a solid lifter big block under the hood and it’s ready to play. Since it’s been parked for many years it probably needs to be gone through, but there’s still plenty of summer days left to do that before having some fun. It’s located in Spokane, Washington and is listed here on eBay where the auction ends soon.

The seller mentions that the engine is not the numbers matching original, but that the factory big block was replaced at some point with an aluminum headed ’67 396. That could make it an L89 which was a lighter weight version of the fire-breathing 375 horsepower L78. All these numbers just add up to some serious tire-shredding fun! The TH400 transmissions and 12 bolt rear end are believed to be original to the car. Not that it really matters though because this muscle machine should be driven on the street, not consigned to car show duty.

Even more surprises inside! I can spot a rosewood steering wheel and houndstooth upholstery. There were only a few manufacturers who used houndstooth patterned material and it always seems to be in awesome cars. You could get it in a Camaro, Porsche… Can you name any others? The interior obviously needs to be restored, but you might be able to stand it while you are going through the mechanicals. As long as it doesn’t smell too bad in there.

The beefy rear tires and slightly raked stance look awkward from the front, but from this angle, they look about perfect! The Cragars would probably stay if this were mine, but I’d be tempted to return the paint to its original hue. You can see some of the factory maroon color on the roof where the vinyl once resided. A full restoration might take a while though, so I’d recommend going through the brakes, replacing all the fluids, and then seeing how big of a burnout this thing can do!

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Comments

  1. NotSure

    Seller listing says vinyl top then original color Cordovan Maroon. Seems unclear to me as I look at the pics. I believe vinyl top based on the trim around the maroon and the missing back window trim. Cool Camaro though…

    Like 2
    • Doug

      The trim tag pic (eBay) shows N-2

      N – Cordovan Maroon
      2 – Black vinyl or convertible top

  2. 36 Packard

    Now see, the writer here questions why it was put in storage. BF, hint hint, maybe inquire and add it to the story. You are trying to get subscribers, I myself might be inclined if the stories were fuller.. I cool back story will make the story much more interesting, maybe worth paying for. Just saying.

    Like 7
  3. Troy s

    Neat thing about non matching numbers tired looking street rats like this is no worries about door dings or other nonsense. Make it mechanically road worthy and leave the rest. This looks so much like the cars I remember considering to buy or actually buying, and how a lot of street rigs looked years ago. Forget the fancy paint Jonny, just make it go fast. Neat car.

    Like 13
  4. Len

    Seeing all these 1st gen Camaros makes me want to start the resto on my 68. RS with 327 and the houndstooth interior. If I only had the time, oh and then the money.

    Like 5
  5. Beaver

    Mavrick had hounstooth

    • moosie moosie

      Maverick,,,,,,,,BDSWWC?

  6. Mike

    How to sell a car the easy way:

    1. Pull car out of storage
    2. Wash car
    3. Take decent pictures

    Like 6
  7. Ken

    Lose the Cragars. Those things don’t even look good on Hot Wheels cars.

    Like 3
    • bruce baker

      No, no, there not even rusty! Keep them on it until they are crusty rusty.”If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”!

      Like 7
    • Steve R

      Definitely keep the front, change out the rear for a pair with a better offset.

      Steve R

      Like 5
      • Chris M.

        Yes, despite invoking tacky nostalgia the deep dish, ala’ 1982 Cragar mags gotta go IMO only. Otherwise very cool car.

        Like 1
  8. bruce baker

    “Bone Stock”? So this car came new with a aluminum intake manifold(unless its painted silver), chrome wheels, chrome air cleaner, & hood pins? I do like this car the way it is now.

    Like 3
    • gbvette62

      The chrome air cleaner on that car was factory installed on 68 Camaro SS’s and Z/28’s, as well as many other 66-72 Camaros, Corvettes, Novas, Chevelles, and even some full size Chevrolets. If the car started life with a 396/375, then it came with that aluminum intake manifold also. But yes, the Cragar’s, hood pins, door panel speaker holes and flex fan, are not OEM.

      Like 3
  9. DayDreamBeliever Member

    Someone’s street racer, for sure.

    Maybe he (or she, to be PC) got married, had kids, grew up, buckled to responsibilities. It happens. And the toy of youth never gets any attention anymore.

    I remember my SS396 Chevelle, and those days fondly.

    This would be a fun car to have. But gee. Those new and shiny spring u-clamps won’t matter when the new owner drops the hammer and expects a hard launch. The spring perches will rip from the frame, and the axle will spin/flip over because the system can’t handle the torque. Best to add a set of good traction bars to prevent spring wind-up. Brought to you courtesy of 1st-hand experience (while a passenger) in a friend’s car, circa 1973.

    :-)

    Yep.

    Like 4
  10. Kevin

    Judging by brownish stain on the bottom of the drivers seat, this car has some very serious acceleration capability. Yikes!

    • Chris M.

      That may have been a result of a night of intense romance in ’74 also!

  11. Marty59

    You could get houndstooth interior in a Vega…

    Like 1
  12. Tom

    If this 68 Camaro came with a Turbo400 then the 396 was not a 375hp engine. All 375hp engines came with the 4 spd. This one most likely had the lower horse engine.

  13. TimM

    Car looks like true 70’s with the oversized rear tires and the rake of the car!! Makes me want to get my 8 track player out and listen to some rock!!!

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