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Real Deal Barn Find: 1968 Chevrolet Camaro Z28

There is a band of enthusiasts who fear that the supply of genuinely amazing barn finds will eventually dry up. That is unlikely to happen soon if this 1968 Chevrolet Camaro is any indication. This car is anything but ordinary, being a complete and numbers-matching Z28. Don’t let the tired exterior fool you because this gem is rock-solid and should draw crowds when returned to its former glory. The Z28 is listed here on Craigslist in Calhoun, Georgia. The seller set their price at $32,500, and it appears they are relatively firm on that figure.

The Z28 option was one of the company’s best-kept secrets when Chevrolet released the First Generation Camaro. Few knew of its existence, and only 602 buyers ordered one in 1967. The cat was out of the bag by the time our feature car rolled off the line, with 7,199 buyers slapping down the cash to drive one home. The history of this Butternut Yellow example is unclear, although we know it sat in the barn for over forty years. The relative lack of protection and dirt floor would typically not auger well, but that is where this classic springs its first pleasant surprise. The seller admits that water leaked onto the passenger-side front fender, causing it to rust. However, that is claimed to be the only steel penetration. The rest of the car is said to be rock-solid and carrying nothing beyond surface corrosion. The lack of photos makes it hard to substantiate the claim, meaning an in-person inspection is warranted. The floors and rails deserve checking, as does the cowl. If this Z28 is as solid as the seller claims, it represents what could be a relatively straightforward project. However, the decades of inactivity mean the buyer will face a nut-and-bolt restoration, and a car of this caliber deserves nothing less. Assessing the state of the glass and trim is also impossible, but this project’s scope means that replacing anything will be a minor and justifiable expense.

Chevrolet produced the Z28 as a homologation special for the highly competitive Trans Am series. This required an engine with a capacity under 305ci, and the company created a sweet little 302 that produced an “official” 290hp and 290 ft/lbs of torque. Wiser heads than mine believe those figures to be grossly understated, with some placing the power output closer to 350hp. Shifting duties fell to a four-speed manual transmission, and it would be fair to consider the Z28 as a race car for the streets. If the lack of significant rust seems too good to be true, the fact that this beauty retains its numbers-matching drivetrain could seal the deal. The car doesn’t run and probably hasn’t done so for four decades. Therefore, budgeting for a complete mechanical rebuild would be a smart strategy. There are no interior shots, so assessing its condition is impossible. The seller states they are including a selection of new parts to set the new owner on their restoration path. However, they don’t specify what these are.

Finding a classic hidden away in a barn or shed is an incredible experience, particularly if the car is rare, desirable, or both. I can only imagine the seller’s elation when they unearthed this 1968 Camaro Z28. It needs a mountain of TLC, but the results should be worth the effort. I opened this article by questioning whether the supply of incredible finds will ever be exhausted, speculating that this Camaro proves that may not be the case. However, I could be wrong. Are you willing to take that chance by letting this Z28 slip through your fingers? I would hardly blame you if you decide to pursue it further. We’d love progress reports if you become its new owner.


  1. Barzini Barzini Member

    Nice car with an interesting history but I have never seen a 302 emblem on the front fender. It’s usually a z28 emblem.

    Like 9
    • JCA Member

      I think both are correct. Either one was was put on depending on the build date. I’m guessing 302 was earlier than z28

      Like 18
      • 59poncho

        Correct, 302 emblem ceased in January I believe.

        Like 0
      • Emery Thompson

        Gm called this car the 302 special in 67& early 68.it was in March of 68 it became officially the z/28.all early 68 had the 302 badge.it in March they changed the badge.

        Like 0
    • Dennis

      Believe it or not, I have seen a Z with that emblem back in the day! BTW, whoever restores this car please don’t put a cowl induction hood on it. I’m tired of seeing it. Lol.

      Like 27
      • gbvette62

        67 Z/28’s had no badging, the only external clue to what it was on 67’s were the stripes. In 68, early cars came with the “302” badges on the front fenders, these were replaced with the more familiar “Z/28” badges around January 68.

        I doubt that anyone spending the money needed to restore this car isn’t going to put a cowl hood on it, the cowl hood was only offered in 69. 67 and 68 Z’s were available with a unique dealer installed air cleaner that ducted cool air from the cowl vents, front a hole that had to be cut into the firewall above the heater box. These air cleaners are very rare toady and sell for thousands of dollars.

        Like 13
    • John Frederick Clemson

      The 302 was the motor that came in the Z/28 and the emblem is on the front fenders on the 68’s and 69’s.

      Like 1
    • TomD

      The 302 emblems were the early version in 68 then it went to the Z/28 emblems and continued all the way into the 69 year.

      Like 5
  2. TomP

    I thought barn finds were drying up too, but then I put the the Yenko’s, Ferrari’s, and Lotus’s I’ve accumulated into my barns; now they’ve become barn finds all over again. So the term “barn find” is not something that will run out, it’s always evolving into new barn finds.

    Like 18
  3. Roland j st jean

    some if not all 67 z-28,s had 302 on the front fender

    Like 9
    • JCA Member

      This is a ’68

      Like 9
    • doug

      True, but not where this one has it. ’67 just had it at the rear of the front fender down low like all other ’67’s. Early ’68 had 302 like this.

      Like 3
      • gbvette62

        As I said above, 67’s had no badging, the only way to tell a 67 Z/28 from looking at it were the stripes. 67’s only had the standard “CAMARO” emblem on the front fenders. The “302” badges were added to the front fenders in 68 and remained there till around January 68, when they were replaced by “Z/28” emblems.

        I suspect this car is rougher then what the seller thinks and claims it is, but unlike others here, I don’t think the price is out of line. A customer of mine paid more then that 10 years ago for a 68 Z in similar condition, that I located for him, though it was a Rally Sport with the rare cowl air cleaner.

        Like 9
  4. Big C

    At $32500? It already slipped.

    Like 3
  5. FlGuy

    I totally agree, poor condition is more like it.

    Like 11
  6. Frank Sumatra

    It certainly meets all the requirements of Barn Finds-style “storage”. I bid $16,500 for the mower.

    Like 10
  7. Jim Shenay

    Why doesn’t the seller, for that asking price, at least throw a few more pictures of the interior, floor and trunk?? What are we hiding!! If the seller has enough information to ask $32k , then at least throw some more pics in. I smell a rat 🐀

    Like 22
    • Chuck Simons

      And why in all CAPS in the ad?

      Like 2
  8. Bwaaahhhaaaaahhhhaaaaa

    “I know what I have”

    – seller

    Like 15
  9. Keith Bernstein

    I bought a
    Butter nut Yellow
    ’68 Z28 at Carlisle car show in 1988
    It was immaculate valid California 2 owner former drag strip car
    No stripes
    Correct MO block
    Car had a few things going on including radiator / heater core issues .
    Was faster ,higher winding motor than my ’70 Z28 LT1 350/360 HP
    Paid $6800 !!!
    Amazing where all this has come
    Awful lot of money for what I see there
    I’m assuming it would be close to a six figure car ,after a well done ,concourse type restoration !!

    Like 6
    • D-Squared

      I’d hope that the new owner gets six figures for it after spending well into the six figures buying and restoring the car. A nut and bolt full rotisserie restoration from a reputable shop is close to 6 figures. Especially if you want no corners cut. That figure may vary a slight bit depending on the amount of rust found after a good hot tank stripping. But, still… between the 33k to buy the car… the 2 1/2 or 3k to ship the car and then the 70-100k to do the restoration… it would have to be worth 200k for me to find reason to want to sell it after all that trouble.

      Like 9
  10. bobhess bobhess Member

    Pretty close to being September’s second “you’ve got to be kidding” award.

    Like 14
  11. James Kalka

    Before they were badged with the Z/28 emblem they had a simple 302 emblem.

    Like 5
  12. Scott Member

    If you are in the market for one, it is definitely worth a visit. Look into all the items that you guys have listed above and you will avoid the surprises. In about 2003 I had the option to buy two 1968 Camaros. First was a stock 327 powerglide with one repaint in a non original color with the wrong motor in very good condition. The other was a numbers matching completely original Z28 that was completely disassembled. I had too much going on at the time and selected the runner. :( They were both asking between $4k and $5k.

    Like 3
  13. Dave

    I understand all the comments about the 302 tag. Note though that the bumper on that ’68 is from a ’67 Camaro. Easily corrected but I wonder what else is like this for $32K?

    Like 1
    • Emery Thompson

      The bumpers were the same for 67&68
      The only difference was in 68the z got bumperettes.

      Like 0
  14. Dave

    I understand all the comments about the 302 tag. Note though that the rear bumper on that ’68 is from a ’67 Camaro. Easily corrected but I wonder what else is like this for $32K?

    Like 1
  15. Rufus

    I think it’s safe to say that the buyer who will respond to this particular car will have a good idea what he’s looking at, and if they are in the game at this level, be aware of costs, authenticity, and shipping. He will probably be well versed in how to determine rust, engine viability, drive train correctness and just what he will have on the other end of this project. I doubt seriously if a fellow who is well heeled enough to buy a $30,000 plus project will buy the old rebadged six cylinder rust bucket.
    Because there ain’t no man
    Who got the money in his hand
    Who got any of that bread
    Bein’ slow in the head
    BTW the Optional Z cam back then allowed the engine to run to 7,000 rpm and made over 500HP on the top end. The published figures were for the insurance companies.

    Like 5
  16. yachtsmanbill

    I dont get the blocking deal on the trailer. Cinder blocks and wood under or near the rear springperched? Is that to prevent the weight from pushing them and the rear rails through the floor? I see them up front too. Just kinda odd…

    Like 2
    • 59poncho

      Very curious indeed. Structural integrity compromised?

      Like 0
  17. George Mattar

    I guarantee mice have had their way inside. Needs total resto with sub frame removed, etc. Get the VISA card ready and hang on. Much more scarce than a dime a dozen 69 Z.

    Like 0
  18. moosie moosie

    If it has been in that “barn” for 40 years with the front windows down as shown in the meager pictures, you can be rest assured there is not too much left of the interior. Many generations of critters called that Z/28’s interior home . It’s a shame.

    Like 3
  19. rayburn

    At a gas station years ago, I remember seeing a black with white stripes 69 Z/28 Camaro and it had 302 emblems on the hood, also had a nitrous bottle in-between the bucket seats!

    Like 0
  20. Rob

    My 68 was a later one with the Z/28 up front, Rallye Green Deluxe interior and i did put a cowl hood on it !! The second owner toasted the 302 and bought the LT-1 Short Block and It Was Fast !! Paid 1700.00 for it in 1974

    Like 1

    Back in the mid- seventies, I didn’t buy a ’68 Z-28 that was complete, but drove hard and put away wet at a Chevy dealer’s wholesale lot. Could have been purchased for $800! (ouch!)

    Like 2
  22. Mountainwoodie

    Finally! A TRUE Barnfind!

    You guys can keep the websites’s name! This should calm the internet nattering complaints of a few. I guess you have to whine about something.

    As for this less than fine whine of a Camaro….I’d like to know what it ends up selling for as I KNOW what he’s got. It’s not what the seller thinks. I think,

    Like 1
  23. Steven W Stull

    I have had (3) 1968 Z28 through till 1988. (2) rally sports and one non rally. The rear bumper is correct on the back with correct bumper guards.
    The 302 front fender emblems indicates a very early 1968 and correct. Rims are correct for this year. To me this is a diamond in the rough (not bad at all) with all parts present. Who could complain? The car has been sold in 24 hours by someone who knows what is here. I remember getting out and adjusting the solid lifters with my feeler gauge when driving the cars on a long distance, This was normal if you drove these cars. But I would do it all again.
    My British racing green R/S rally had the factory high lift track cam in it. You could crank the distributor around in it and take it 10,000 RPM.
    One more bit of correct onfo. On the back deck lid the rear stripe did not run under the Camaro emblem on the right side, The factory taped around the emblem. FACTS PEOPLE.

    Like 3
    • Ffred

      Why would you take it too 10,000 rpm? It’s far out of of it’s power band and your wasting your engine..

      Like 1
      • Rufus

        @Fred. The optional Z cam was designed to make horsepower over 5000rpm. In the early days the insurance companies were raising rates over high horsepower cars, and the published HP rating for the 302 was 290 (correct me if I’m wrong, it may have been 295) @ 5000rpm. This camshaft then began to make the big HP at the high rpm. My buddy had a 283 in a 57 Corvette SCCA B Production racer and ran this optional Z cam. Big numbers in a small engine. It wailed!

        Like 1
    • Rex B Schaefer

      Car’s a POS! 10k with the off-road cam is another “joke”!

      Like 2
      • Steven W Stull

        get a life and get educated Rex. Have you had one of these with that cam?

        Like 0
  24. Rod Bender

    How about the tail lights? The 67 had reverse lights next tobrake light in the same lens and the 68 reverse lights were separate? Right? Wrong?

    Like 0
    • Dave

      Seperate Reverse Lights were RS models, not ’67 vs ’68.

      Like 1
  25. Steven W Stull

    To the few “I know it all” in here posting but correct good remarks from the few. I have and drove and owned (3) of these for years. The Rally Sports had two red tail lights in the housing and back up lights under the bumper. Both my RS Z/28 cars were this way and never touched or painted or wrecked. The non Rally like this car has the correct tail lights with red and back up in the same housing. And to further the correctness of a Rally Sport, The cars had a chrome or polished lower rocker panel the length of the rockers. The standard Camaro did not. What is tough knowing the facts?

    Like 2
  26. Doc

    Like any “race car” used on the street, these are a real chore to drive around town. They are made to run 5000 to 7000 ram on a track so are turds at lower ram unless you put drag race gears in the rear and then they are worthless on the highway. Boss mustangs are the same way.

    Like 2
  27. Richard Long

    We had so many choices in those days, clones were a non issue. Personally I preferred the 64- 67 Olds 442 to all others. Currently drive a ’21 Scat Pack Challenger. It is far superior to anything made in the 60’s.

    Like 1
    • Rex B Schaefer

      Don’t care for “clapped out”, “high tech”, “retro” “crazy horse power” “muscle cars”. No “soul” or “vibe” to them! Same reason I no longer follow NHRA racing of any kind!

      Like 1

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