Category: 1969

Here’s What Everyone Forgot About The 1969 ZL1 Camaro – Dennis Kariuki @HotCars

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Chevrolet brought back the Camaro  ZL1 in 2012, there’s even a 2021 model, but these new Camaro ZL1 cars are not the most popular and sought-after Chevy Camaro ZL1’s. The highly unsafe, powerful, and untamed 1969 ZL1 Camaro takes that crown. Most Europeans were surprised when the 2018 Camaro ZL1 1LE got banned on the continent for safety reasons, but if the 1969 Camaro ZL1 was made today, it would be banned worldwide. It was raw, with no safety features, and under the hood was a big block engine that G.M had made illegal for Chevrolet to include in production cars.

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Flashy, not fast: The 1969 American Motors Rebel Raider was a limited-run package exclusive to New York and New Jersey dealers – Thomas A. DeMauro @Hemmings

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Regional specialty car programs lured curious potential customers into dealer showrooms by promising an exclusive offering, often at a tempting price. Even if consumers didn’t ultimately buy that particular vehicle, it still got them in the door so a savvy salesperson could seize the opportunity to sell them a different one.

These packages normally consisted of a group of options added to an existing model, as well as a catchy name announced with decals or emblems, and possibly special stripes and/or paint colors to make the creation standout further.

Some of these distinctive rides went on to become widely known beyond their geographical points of sale, while others were seemingly lost to time.In 1969, New York and New Jersey-area American Motors Rambler dealers offered the “Raider.” Based on the unit-body midsize Rebel, it featured “Electric Green, Tangerine, or Blue—You’ve Never Seen” (as stated in the ad) exterior colors, a black grille, a vinyl top, a bench-seat interior, a sports-type steering wheel, an AM radio, power steering and brakes, and other small items.

We know those colors instead as Big Bad Green, Big Bad Orange, and Big Bad Blue, and our featured Raider’s original window sticker lists “Big Bad Blue.

“Given its aggressive appearance, you may be expecting to hear that the engine was a rumbling 280-hp 343, or possibly the even-more-powerful 315-hp 390, but it was actually a 200-hp 290 two-barrel V-8 with a single exhaust. It was backed by a column-shifted Borg-Warner Shift- Command automatic transmission and a 3.15:1 axle ratio. The powertrain choice made sense to keep the price reasonable and reach a broader customer base.

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WATCH THIS: when NASCAR was awesome – Dan Stoner @Hemmings

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If you get our weekly Hemmings Muscle Machines newsletter, you’d see that we’re currently geeking on a certain 1940 Ford coupe hot rod, built and owned by one David Pearson. Yes, that David Pearson – the legendary stock car driver. Not only did Pearson drive one of our favorite race cars, but he drove during our favorite period of NASCAR: the late Sixties.

So, it’s fair to say that we want that ’40 coupe, but we also want to now build a fastback Torino cut to look like David Pearson’s famous Holman Moody #17 car. Ugh. Too many ideas, not enough cash on hand. But look, what kind of car nuts would we be if we didn’t have a fairly insane wishlist of cars we need to build? Tell you this much, though: we’d build a Pearson car and drive it every day for a year. Welded-up doors, cage and all. Sure, turn signals and head/taillights, but also shorty headers and even shorter pipes. The fun part would be figuring out how to run it as a commuter car without getting pulled over every 3.5 miles and kicked out of the neighborhood for firing it up before 8 a.m. every weekday.

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Restored Meadowlark Yellow 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1 Is The Cream Of The Crop – Brett Foote @FordAuthority

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Meadowlark Yellow 1969 Ford Mustang

Some early Ford Mustang variants, like the Boss 429, were produced in scant numbers and command big bucks today. The 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1 most certainly isn’t one of them, as over 70,000 people checked that particular box in that particular model year.

That’s impressive for a car that was one of six performance Mustang variants in 1969, and this gorgeous Meadowlark Yellow example that was recently sold by LaFontaine Automotive is a good example of why it was so popular.

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2000HP 251MPH BIG RED 1969 CAMARO. THE GREATEST PRO TOURING CAR EVER BUILT? – Hoonigan Build Biology

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This may very well be one of the most legendary car builds of all time. That’s a big claim… but backing it up is 2000 horsepower, a base Veyron-beating top speed of 251mph, countless race wins over the past few decades, and a rebirth from a fire that could have ended it completely. Hold onto your keyboards, this is a story for the times.

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How to build a 670-hp Pro Touring 1969 Camaro without touching the paint -Thomas A. DeMauro @Hemmings

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Taking a modern approach to race car performance for the street
By Thomas A. DeMauro from June 2020 issue of Hemmings Motor News
“I drive it like I stole it!” admits Larry Atwood, regarding his Pro Touring 1969 Camaro. Another owner might be tempted, at least initially, to go easy on his recently completed build after considering the expenditure required to realize his LT4-powered Gen V Bowtie dream.
With all the labor and parts, and the expertise mustered by the crew at the V8 Speed & Resto Shop in Red Bud, Illinois, to not only swap the modern supercharged engine into the classic chassis, but to dial it in to behave like Chevrolet intended all along, you wouldn’t want to risk breaking something right out of the gate, right? Then there’s the Detroit Speed subframe and suspension upgrades, the big Baer brakes… the list goes on and on. Nevertheless, Larry reasons, “We used all high-end components in the build and the Camaro came together well, so there’s no reason why it shouldn’t be able to withstand how I drive it.

First-built AMX/3 to get long-overdue restoration – Daniel Strohl @Hemmings

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First-built AMX/3 to get long-overdue restoration

In June of 1969, under codename E18, BMW engineers took delivery of an aggressively styled mid-engine coupe for development and testing. Except the car wasn’t theirs, wasn’t even built in Germany, and was destined for the American market. That car, the first-built American Motors AMX/3, did eventually make its way to the United States, where it proceeded to sit for decades before a recent sale got the ball rolling on a once-promised restoration.

“(This is) arguably the rarest American muscle car in existence,” George Huisman of Classic Design Concepts said of the AMX/3, chassis No. 1, which will make its public debut after more than 50 years at the Muscle Car and Corvette Nationals show in Rosemont, Illinois.

First-built AMX/3 to get long-overdue restoration

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Related – What if AMC had a Mustang-style vehicle before Ford?

The only thing that can top a Chevelle is Stevie Nicks on top of one – Dan Stoner @Hemmings

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The only thing that can top a Chevelle is Stevie Nicks on top of one

It’s an undisputed truth that Rock-N-Roll and muscle cars go together like Dazed and Confused. One of the first things we always seem to do, after plunking down the cake for the car we buy – whether it’s a certified muscle car or some wheezy 2-door we foist our dreams of glory upon – is a stereo. After all, what’s the point of putting air in those Hi-Jackers in the rear if you can’t bust out the Motörhead jams up front, right?

The only thing that can top a Chevelle is Stevie Nicks on top of one

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Related – Larry’s Big Day with Unknown Rock Star

Related – American Modern Insurance “The Build”

Today we learned: The Fiero wasn’t Pontiac’s first mid-engine car – Daniel Strohl @Hemmings

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Today we learned: The Fiero wasn’t Pontiac’s first mid-engine car

Not counting horseless carriages and other early automobiles that placed their engines under and behind-ish the driver, the Pontiac Fiero is often hailed as the first mid-engine American production car, arriving 35 years before the mid-engine Corvette. But, as it turns out, Pontiac’s engineers had investigated the mid-engine layout 50 years ago, long before the Fiero.

True, the XP-21 Firebird I placed its gas-turbine engine behind the driver, making it a mid-engine design, but all three gas-turbine Firebirds were considered GM designs, not of any particular brand, similar to the XP-8 Le Sabre and the Futurliners.

We did recently come across mention that GM considered switching the Firebird and Camaro to mid-engine in the early days of the third-generation F-body’s development. However, it appears those ideas progressed no further than drawings and scale models, and the GM folks involved spent more time debating whether the third-gens – in pursuit of lighter and more fuel-efficient packaging – should be front-wheel drive than they did debating whether they should be mid-engine.

Today we learned: The Fiero wasn’t Pontiac’s first mid-engine car

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Related – The Pontiac Fiero could have been a winner with a supercharged V-6

The car that started Pro-Touring is going up for a no-reserve auction – Mike Austin @Hemmings

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Shameless Hemmings Auction promotion

“I was not attempting to create a new genre of cars. I was attempting to harden an old Camaro enough to survive One Lap of America.”

Unless you’re already familiar with Mark Stielow’s creations, there’s nothing to hint at the significance of the the car in the photo above. On the outside, it might look like a very nice custom 1969 Chevrolet Camaro with some modern wheels and tires. It is, however, much more than that. This is the car, nicknamed Tri-Tip, credited with starting the Pro-Touring movement. And, as the headline says, it’s for sale on Hemmings Auctions with no reserve. It also will be on display in the Lingenfelter booth at the 2019 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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