By Daniel Strohl on Nov 4th, 2021 at 2:23 pm
When he first laid eyes on the Z/28-badged Camaro that had lain dormant in a garage for decades just three blocks from his house, Bill Fowler figured it was just another hot rod that just another kid had his hands on back in the Eighties. Little did he suspect that he may have stumbled upon a long lost piece of Chevrolet history that passed through the hands of one of the most legendary mechanics in the world.
At least, little did he suspect until he heard the asking price
“He wanted $25,000 for the car, but then he wanted another $5,000 for the intake manifold,” Fowler said.
The seller, small-block Chevrolet tech manual author Larry Schreib, had good reason to ask that much for the latter: The three two-barrel manifold quite possibly came off of an L-70 350-cu.in. V-8, a 360-horsepower engine that Chevrolet managers had reportedly planned for the 1967 Camaro and even sent down the pilot production line before scrapping the option entirely. Much of what we know about the L-70 comes from Philip Borris’s book, “Echoes of Norwood: General Motors Automobile Production During the Twentieth Century,” in which Borris spoke with former Norwood plant employees who recalled building L-70-powered Camaros, painted with Z/28-style rally stripes. In the end, Chevrolet offered the single four-barrel L-48 as the only 350 in the 1967 Camaro and essentially replaced the L-70 option with the 302-powered Z/28.