Rusty RS: 1970 Chevrolet Camaro SS/RS 396

The owner of this 1970 Camaro SS/RS 396 admits, to two facts. The first is that the car has been off the road for many years. The second thing that he admits to is that the Camaro is very rusty and that it will require a full restoration. If you believe that you have what it would take to tackle this major restoration project, then you will find the Camaro located in Sanford, Maine, and listed for sale here on eBay. The BIN on this classic Chevy has been set at $3,900.

Starting with the highlights of the car, the rear frame rails and trunk floor are said to be solid. Unfortunately, from there it is all downhill for the Cranberry Red Camaro. Given the fact that the owner makes special mention of these particular spots doesn’t bode well for the front frame rails or the floors. Certainly, the lack of rear glass and the numerous rust holes in the car’s top mean that it is anything but water-resistant. So it is fair to expect that plenty of moisture has found its way into the car. If you add wet carpet and leaf litter to the equation, then I would definitely be bracing for the worst. The amount of rust that is visible in the lower extremities of the body would suggest that there will potentially be plenty of cutting, grinding, and welding in the future for the Camaro’s next owner.

For a car that has suffered this level of decay, there are some surprises in store when you look inside the Camaro. Ignoring the aftermarket radio/cassette player that has been fitted to the car, the dash and pad actually look to be in pretty fair condition. They aren’t perfect, but I think that they, along with the console, would restore okay. Even the front seats look like they wouldn’t need more than new covers. The rest of it looks pretty sad, but I guess that those salvageable items represent a starting point for anyone considering a restoration. One option that was fitted and appears to be intact, is the factory air conditioning.

If this Camaro had been a numbers-matching car, then that would’ve been a bonus. When it rolled out of the factory, the car was fitted with the L34 version of the 402ci V8, a 3-speed Turbo Hydramatic transmission, 12-bolt rear end, power steering, and power brakes. The original engine appears to have gone the way of the dinosaurs, and now the car is fitted with a 454 of 1972 vintage. The condition of the engine isn’t clear, and even though there is some pretty obvious corrosion, the next owner might just be lucky enough to find that the engine at least turns freely. After all, with the amount of bad news that we’ve had to this point with the Camaro, our luck has to turn at some point.

I’m a firm believer in the philosophy that given enough time and money, almost any car is capable of being restored. I should stress the word “almost,” because there are exceptions to that particular rule. Without a personal inspection, it is impossible to be able to state conclusively that this car is beyond restoration, but I will say that it will be a brave person who takes it on. But of course, fortune does favor the brave.

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Comments

  1. HANS

    Too bad it’s so rusty. Has some nice options – SS396 – 350HP (L34), Split-bumper, RS. AC. Cranberry Red (Code 75). Looks like most of the important original pieces are there. Just a major under taking to restore but would make for a real nice cruiser.

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  2. stillrunners

    Man-O-Man this must have been sweet to drive back in it’s day…..still not a bad price if you can find a southern donor body…..a front chassis is easy to find.

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    • Bodyman68

      Anything can be restored, too bad not numbers matching. A southern body would be great but at most its a parts car with good numbers vin. To waste time and money on car this isn’t the one.

      1
  3. Farhvergnugen

    This Cranberry Red belongs back in the Cranberry Bog where it was stored.

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  4. 70kingswood

    to bad it is so rusty, 70.5 Camaro’s have lots of neat one year items like the little rear spoiler and the low back bucket seats, this one was well equipped as well with A/C, PDB, PS, the aforementioned RS option and other cool options. Take me back to late 1970!

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  5. Gaspumpchas

    I sold a 67 that had no parts that weren’t rusty. After the scammers a guy offered me 3500 and I took it. He did the car as he was experienced in camaros. Alas, the car had a clean registration, and he lost the paperwork.
    When the rust, leaves and pine needles get into these cars they show no mercy. I’m sure he will get his BIN, just hope the buyer knows what he’s getting himself into. Good luck.
    Cheers
    GPC

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  6. George mattar

    Best year Camaro ever. I would rather have this pile of rust than a new Camaro, which is butt ugly.

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  7. stillrunners

    What’s a bog …is that like a barn ??

    • Paul

      This car has a nice body style!
      I also really think the new Camaro’s look great!….I have been a mustang fan most of my life and I absolutely hate the new mustang body style can’t stand the rear C pillars …funny how opinions can vary

      • Gaspumpchas

        Well said, paul and thanks for bringing your opinion to this great forum. Opinions is what this is all about, and, although some take offense to whats on here, I love BF. Don’t forget, opinions are like @$$holes, everybody has one!!
        Cheers
        GPC

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    • bone

      a bog is a swamp , where this one looks like it was dragged out of

  8. Troy s

    I never really see all that many factory original second gen big block Camaros. A 454 Camaro that once was a 307 weenie mobile is just a hobby car street machine, not quite as interesting as a real deal SS396 from ’70-’71 like the mess featured here. Awe, it’s not nearly as bad as some of the Dodge/Plymouths that come through here right??!!

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  9. jeff

    Although Im a MOPAR guy In 1979 while with my boss picking up cars for the bodyshop/ car dealer I worked for at that time I came across a gold 1971 396 4 speed Camaro at of all places a small AMC dealer guy wanted 600 bucks for it ran WELL but needed paint my boss Jack talked me out of it sayin it was junk two days later we went to pick up HIS 71 Camaro I did have the honor however to drive the car back to the shop and hammered the snot out of it . We turned that car black got rid of the old man green interior and sold it at the auction for a nice profit even with odd even plate rationing and gas hittin a buck a gallon about the same time a friend of mine found a 1964 Catalina 421 tri power 4 speed for 800 bucks at a little rinky dink car lot people panicked and dumped these gas guzzlers and bought vegas and pintos I was drivin a 1970 roadrunner with a 375 horse 440 that I paid 400 bucks for at the time I burned so much gas that summer that I almost felt guilty !!!!!

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    • don

      I bought my 73 Duster 340 from a dealership in 1979 ; I paid 1500.00 for it with 40,000 miles on it. It was in the back lot because people were panicking about gas and they couldn’t sell it. I was 18, and when gas did hit a buck a gallon I tried to sell it, but had no offers on it so I kept it – it will be 40 years this October !

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  10. karl

    This is a New England car ; as badly rusted as it looks its probably at least twice as bad . If it had the original engine I would think it would have been another Vin swap car , but as it is , its barely a parts car

  11. TimM

    Every part of this car is available aftermarket!! It’s a lot of work but it’s a sweet ride for this second generation carmaro!!!

    • bone

      And I think you would have to replace everything for this car to be roadworthy again !

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