Starting Over: 1970 Chevrolet Camaro Z28

Z28 stood for “Camaro Special Performance Package.” It was first initiated to replica the cars used by Chevy to compete in the SCCA Trans-Am series. It would become a popular choice from the early days of the Camaro through 1974, with a few revivals since. This Z28 is an early 1970 build at the Norwood plant and will be a big project for someone, including sourcing an engine and transmission. The car is located in Adairsville, Georgia and is available here on eBay where the reserve has yet to be beat at $3,045.

Due to production delays in shifting over from the 1969 models, Camaro (and Firebird) assemblies for the new year didn’t start until January 1970. In that abbreviated year, the Z28 option was selected for just 8,733 Camaro’s. Rule changes in the Trans-Am series meant that the Camaro could now use an engine bigger than 302 cubic inches, the 350. The bigger motor also allowed an automatic transmission to be used in the Z28 for the first time. The Z28 came with a mandatory 12-bolt rear axle, and a tuned suspension, which made it a formidable car on and off the track.

Here’s what we know about this Camaro. The seller bought the car off the owner’s son, which is only important if that party was the original owner, but we’re not told. The wording sounds like the seller was intending to restore the car, but the funds are now needed to buy a family member a running automobile. This is strictly a project car that has its share of rust, including some in the floor pans, fenders, quarters and a bit in the trunk.

The car was originally painted Mulsanne Blue with black stripes and a blue interior, which would have made in quite attractive back in the day. This originally was a 4-speed car, however the prior owner swapped that for an automatic transmission. That may not matter much now as both the engine and tranny as gone and the prior owner’s son does not know of their whereabouts. This generation of the Camaro would enjoy an extended run through 1981.

All of that suggests that should you choose to restore this car in some form, you’re almost starting with a clean slate. Besides the empty engine compartment, the interior looks to have been gutted. The last photo here is of what the car may have looked like new. In that kind of condition, these ‘70s Z28’s can command mid-five figures. But it will be a big undertaking to right this Camaro’s woes. Who’s up to the challenge?

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Comments

  1. 8banger Member

    “Not I”, said the cat.

    Like 10
  2. KC John

    If you listen real carefully you can hear an ls swap sneaking up on it’s prey.

    Like 9
    • Steve R

      Anyone doing a high end restomod will start with a better car. Their primary concern is to find a clean body, doing so saves them time and money in the long run. A factory pedigree doesn’t mean much, if anything, since they be deviating from stock.

      Steve R

      Like 15
  3. Frank Sumatra

    I owned a 1969 Z-28 and you sir, are no Z-28!

    Like 7
    • Art Pauly

      I bought a new 1969 Z-28 in 1969. I was 21. You are right, this is not a Z-28. It takes more than a badge in the grill.

      Like 5
      • Arthell64 Member

        According to the cowl tag it is a z28.

        Like 5
  4. Sam Shive

    Resto Mod with Plenty of Patina.

    Like 2
  5. Mark

    If you listen real carefully on a quiet night, you can hear it rusting.
    Looks like scrap to me, especially for that price( could find more worthy for less)…

    Like 9
  6. Troy s

    More of a true barn find than the 427 Cobra featured earlier for 5 million plus dollars that’s for sure.
    Without the LT1 350 and four speed transmission it’s just another Camaro with a few problems.

    Like 13
  7. Ike Onick

    I just read the eBay ad. The seller is worried about people wasting his time. LOL.

    Like 13
    • Tom

      Nothing screams “flipper” more than a guy who can’t waitto get the car off the trailer before he takes pictures and posts an ad! Not even agood parts car

      Like 5
  8. grant

    This is a parts car that somebody’s already parted out.

    Like 20
  9. Freddy

    This would have been Joe Dirt’s car if he had been a Chevy guy

    Like 4
  10. MJF

    I am surprised the Shifter handle was intact….

    Like 5
  11. 200mph

    Yes, the SCCA allowed the “street versions” of homologated cars to have engines larger than 5 liters. This opened the door for the Z28’s 350, the AAR ‘Cuda and Challenger T/A 340, and the Pontiac TransAm’s 400.

    However, these engines still had to be 305 ci or less in the actual Trans Am series race cars. A shorter-stroke crankshaft was the usual method of meeting the rule.

    Like 8
  12. Stan Marks

    I hear rust is in………

    Like 1
  13. Tort Member

    With prices not near as high as the first three years of Camaro’s I would surely look for a better starting point than this one.

    Like 3
  14. A.J.

    Current bid is $4350, reserve not met! There’s a lot of dreamers out there.

    Like 8
  15. rancher

    My friend bought a new ’70 Z28 when he got home from Vietnam that had a split front bumper.

    Like 1
    • bikefixr

      The RS option was not Z/28 only. It was available on any Camaro regardless of performance options. Even the 6 cyl’s could get it.

      Like 4
    • Mike Darnall

      Wasn’t the split front bumper considered a 70 1/2?

  16. Goatsnvairs

    If you want a 1970 Z28 you’d be better off buying a finished one. You would spend way more $$ on this project than buying that blue one that is shown in the ad, even if it cost you $50k.

    Like 7
  17. George Mattar

    Stupid people with more money than brains.

    Like 4
  18. Richard Bennett

    This looks exactly like the one I bought straight outa college. Got it for $1k in 1973. Yep, they were rust buckets which I was always repairing up until the day I sold it. That 350 ran really nice, particularly after she was souped up. Finally had to get rid of it in 1981 to fund my new home’s A/C.

  19. Carl R Bacon Jr

    In 1977, I bought my first “for the road” car at age 16, a blue 1970 Camaro. Mine, however, was a 307, 3-speed on the floor, with no rust for $900 bucks. Also, my first car loan, LOL. I turn 60 next month and am retiring for good and want to find a ’70 Camaro and this will not be the one. Even though they make just about everything for these, a better tub would be justified. Just sayin.

    Like 3
  20. al

    Looks like was pulled out of Lake Michigan

    Like 2
    • Stan Marks

      Lake Erie.

      Like 1
  21. bikefixr

    I see a re-VIN in it’s future. To the right buyer, a title, trim tag and VIN is all they want. It’ll resurrect as a numbers-matching car 2 years from now. The cost to restore this is astronomical compared to buying a done one. The only thing left of value is the 12-Bolt rear.

    Like 4
  22. Gray Wolf

    Jack up the antenna and put another Camaro under it! Oh, that’s rusted too! Once you put a motor in it, start it, all the rust will fall off and you have a dune buggy! Why would you let a car just rust away without making an attempt to save it? That way you have something decent to sell!

    Like 1
  23. cam

    Frank and Art……with you’re combined immense knowledge on the subject of 1970 Camaro Z28’s could you point out why this Camaro is not a Z28. Maybe you can then add what we would need to see in this picture to prove it is a 1970 Z28 Camaro…

    Like 1
    • Art Pauly

      I’m not saying it’s not a 1970 Z-28. It may well be. Chevrolet took out what made the 1969 Z-28 special when they did the 1970. The 1969 had a 302 designed and built by Zora Arkos Duntoff (that’s where the Z comes from). It had a Duntoff cam, 620 cfm Holly dual feed on an aluminum high rise manifold with factory headers (at least mine did). It was rated at 290 HP but was closer to 350. Muncie four speed and quick ratio steering. My best 1/4 mile time was 13.5 and that was all factory stock. I would beat 428 Mustangs. They would get me off the line but at top end I was gone. Anyway, Chevy took the spirit out of the Z-28 when they dropped the 350 and automatic in it. If I had the scratch I’d buy another 1969 in a heart beat.

      Like 2
      • Vince H

        If you ever drove a 70 Z/28 with a 4 speed you knew it had an awful lot of heart. It was a really bad a– machine.

  24. cam

    The Z comes from standard GM nomenclature in the option list. It has absolutely nothing to do with Zora. The 302ci went away because of rule changes in TransAm racing that raised the Cubic Inch allowed.

    Like 4
  25. cam

    I do wonder what this means, humm.

    Frank Sumatra

    Jan 17, 2021 at 11:17am

    I owned a 1969 Z-28 and you sir, are no Z-28!

     6

    Like 1
    • Frank Sumatra

      @cam- Two things required to understand the comment: 1) A sense of humor 2) Some knowledge of Vice-Presidential debates. Oh, and the original engine and transmission are long gone. It’s a rusted-out Camaro with a badge on it.

      Like 5
  26. Keith

    Well, I have a 350 and 4-speed out of a 19701/2 Z-28. Enough money and I could be talked out of it. :)

    Like 1
    • Frank Sumatra

      I have a badge from a 1969 Z-28. Perhaps we could be partners?

      Like 2
  27. bowmade

    Current bid $4,450. That’s a lot of money for VIN tags and pretty pictures of what you can build.

    • Rj

      That’s the way it works when you have money to spend, and you want something. It’s not for me to judge.

  28. Rj

    Arkos, Duntoff, 620 carb, and just were did the Z come from ?? Your wrong on all accounts, or maybe your just drunk.

    Like 3
    • Art Pauly

      Think what you like. I owned it.

  29. mike'z

    I’m an original owner of a second generation Z-28 and i always thought the Z-28 was the specific GM option number for a specific suspension package that made a camaro a Z-28….is that wrong?

  30. Rj

    It was more than suspension. “1967” RPO Z/28 was for the Special Performance Package set up to race in the SCCA TransAm series.

    RPO Z/28 included
    302 solid lifter cam
    Aluminum intake
    780 Holly
    Open element air cleaner
    F41 suspension
    Race Stripes
    302 fender emblems
    15″ Rally Wheels
    Power front disc brakes (required)
    Muncie close ratio 4 speed

    This is not a 100% complete list, it is some of the highlights.

    The man behind the Z/28 was Vince Piggins

    RPO Z/22 is for the RS package
    RPO Z/27 is for the SS package

    Like 1
  31. Jam46

    The z28 was not built to replicate the cars in trans am racing. It was built to compete in trans am racing. No, the cars in the trans am series were not completely stock. But they were all z28s. The z28 was the only gm car fitted with a 302. This was required to meet the 5.0 l limit of the class. The first z28s (1967) had no identifying marks on the car to indicate that it was a Z28. The press picked up on the z28 option and chevy added badges to the car the following year.

    Like 1

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