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Uber Low Mile: 1981 Camaro Z28

This 1981 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 was the last of its kind and the last of the Camaro Gen 2 body style. The white on blue Z28 has a reported 29,213 miles from new! There are not a lot of pictures in the listing and most of them are not good quality. The ad can be seen here on eBay with a BIN price of $19,899. The car is located in beautiful Ocala, Florida. For the price, it looks like a good deal and fun car that would not take any work to produce some fun.

Whenever anyone claims low mileage, I always try to look at the pictures very closely. The bagginess of the seat upholstery could indicate the seats have been recovered. The dark blue interior shows the car has power windows, automatic transmission, air conditioning and tilt steering. I have never liked the Z28 steering wheel compared to the nice padded wheel that came in the Trans Am. This car is reported to be a radio delete from the factory but a retro radio is installed currently.

Since it has an automatic transmission, this Camaro Z28 was powered by a 350 cubic inch V8 engine in 1981. This was the first year for computer command control and the engine produced an anemic 175 horsepower.  If you ordered a 4 speed in 1981, your car would be equipped with the 305 cubic inch V8 engine with 165 horsepower. One neat feature of the this car is the functional air induction hood.

Over 126,000 Camaros were produced in 1981. Late 1970 and early 1980 Camaro Z28s were very popular with my high school friends and football players at Ridgemont High. My brother recently sold a 1979 Z28 with a 350 cubic inch engine and 4 speed with similar miles for $25,000. So is this car a good deal?


  1. Superdessucke

    I think the side stripe is mounted way too high. Maybe that’s an optical illusion but I don’t think so. It should match up with the front stripe. The seats also look recovered to me, at least the front ones do. I’ve owned two Z28 of this era so I know them pretty well. I would inspect this carefully to verify the mileage claim.

    Like 22
    • JoeMac Joe Mac

      I agree..side stripes are an inch or two too high. I would be careful here. A few things are off. No doubt the car is clean but I’m thinking if not a repaint, then a definite decal replacement. Those seats are suspect too. Buyer beware.

      Like 9
    • Spanky

      Not only too high not the same.

      Like 8
    • jay

      And its crooked

  2. JoeMac Joe Mac

    I agree..side stripes are an inch or two too high. I would be careful here. A few things are off. No doubt the car is clean but I’m thinking if not a repaint, then a definite decal replacement. Those seats are suspect too. Buyer beware.

    Like 5
  3. Bradley

    It should be priced more in the $13,000-$15,000 range with those options. I agree the decals are new and poorly placed. Also, it has been repainted because the grills should be black if memory serves me correctly. Miles could be verified by looking at the wear patterns on the gas and brake pedals.

    Like 3
    • Tom

      I owned a blue 81 & the grill was body color. It had such a poor paint job on the grill that it began to fade after a year & the car was garaged & well cared for.

      Also, it would be wise not to nail the gas to open the air induction hood scoop. When I did that the lifters collapsed scoring the timing chain & gear. Car was a piece of crap.

      Like 4
  4. Pat L Member

    The grills are correct. They should be body colour. Just from my phone, I can also see that it has intermittent wipers, cruise control and power locks. Lack of T- tops is a definite bonus if you ask me.

    Like 8
  5. JP

    Damone: “Hey Charles, how you doin’, buddy? Car looks great, I mean really terrific! You’re really keeping it up wonderfully.”

    Jefferson: “Don’t **** with it!” (walks away)

    Like 12
    • daleone3

      Reference of the WEEK Spicoli!

      Like 4
  6. 370zpp 370zpp Member

    1) Buy it cheap
    2) Remove/relocate the stripes
    3) Replace the granny engine

    Like 2
  7. Spanky

    Looks like an attempt to make it look loke a low mile survivor but new poorly done seat covers, mismated tires and too high and different height stripes, engine bay paint and shine and no 100k odo tells a different story.

    Like 6
  8. Superdessucke

    No the painted grill is correct. On 1980-81 cars it was painted body colour. It was black on 1978-79 cars.

    Like 1
  9. Lynn Member

    The top of the front spoiler stripe and the top of the body side stripe should line up

    Like 3
  10. Mark

    I’m sitting in the garage next to my sons 1979 Z-28 with original paint and stripes while reading this post/comments. I gave it to him when he was 14 which was 20 years ago. It has 60,000 miles and if I could include a picture on this posting I would. But the stripe on this white car is absolutely not in the right spot. As stated in previous comments it is clearly couple inches too high. I looked at the pictures of the white car and lifted the cover right next to me and compared the stripe location.

    Like 7
  11. Bmac777

    I’ve found that my dislike of things sometimes changes as I look back at them years later.
    But I still hate the appearance packages of most of these late 2nd Gen Camaro’s

  12. md

    Also, option sheet shows N90 Aluminum wheels, which is NOT whats on this car.
    The car appears nice enough, too bad a less than up front seller is a spoiler.

  13. Comet

    Calling those seats “recovered” is being generous.

    Like 2
    • Superdessucke

      There are many companies, like Year One, which offer new seat covers for these and tout them them as a do-it-yourself project.

      Realistically, it isn’t very easy to do and I do not consider it to be a novice DYI. You have to secure the cover to the seat springs with several small hog rings. Even getting them on is tough. Spacing them correctly is even tougher. If you’re not experienced, it ends up looking, well, kind of like this.

      And this is saying nothing about the quality of the reproduction covers. I’m not sure who they’re made by now or where but I doubt it’s by GM in the U.S. I would definitely check the country of origin on that.

      Like 1
  14. Robert Jett

    Agreed withe strip being way to high also the biggest question I have is the Interior . I had a 1981 and the seats were pleated up & down those look like they have been replaces with a seat cover or something of that sort..

  15. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    I won’t speak of this car’s originality, but the pictures make the car look like it jumped out of a brochure.

    Like 2
  16. irocrobb

    I had a 1979 z28 with a factory 4 speed for almost 30 years. A fun car that just plain awful on gas. I as well think this one is price too high.

    • JoeNYWF64

      Very very odd getting one fully loaded, but with no radio? 1 of 1?

      Could you get a partial or complete decal delete on ’77-81 z28s?
      I would only want the hood decal on an ’81 & i would put on z28 side emblems from a ’77.

      The front seats look kinda kewl – they alone would not deter me.

      Tom, above, i don’t think ram air in itself caused the lifters problem, tho it’s better to have cool air going in ALL the time & i would try to rig the flapper
      with a bypass switch to keep it open all the time, except when it was raining.
      I’m guessing your motor was a lemon or needed an oil change because wasn’t the same 350 basically used successfully up until around ’93, with only soft cam problems in the later 80’s?

      Irocrobb, bad mpg maybe because it had a 3:73 rear? With the short stroke of the small block & no overdrive, those don’t help mpg, tho with the small primaries of the quadrajet, as long as you didn’t put your foot to the gas predal too much & drove at 55 steady on the highway(hate mail lol), i would expect reasonable mpg, unless there was something else mechanically wrong – needed tuneup, clogged converter, etc.?

  17. William Jackson

    Believe me being a car guy myself I don’t injoy saying this.Most people who deals in and with cars can’t be trusted. I am sixty three years old I have been around and dealt with a lot of car guys. I don’t buy and sale cars myself.

    • Stevieg Member

      I used to own a couple used car lots & I gotta tell ya, I find your comment more than a little offensive. Maybe it is a situation where birds of a feather flock together. You find car guys to be generally untrustworthy, maybe you need to look in the mirror.
      As a former used car dealer, we have a stigma that salespeople in general have, but I found that for the most part, they are decent and honest people trying to make an honest living. If you found different, you are hanging out with the wrong crowd. I have met a few like that, and I threw them off my lots.
      I apologize if I attacked you, it wasn’t meant that way. I assume you are actually probably an ok guy, but if that is the case, get a different circle of friends. The car guys I know, dealers and non-dealers, will generally give the shirt off their backs even for a stranger.
      As for this Camaro, I feel everything that can be said about it has been said. Lipstick on my exwife lol.

      Like 1
  18. Dennis

    I had one brand new in 81 4 speed and t top im so sorry I sold it

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