1969 Chevrolet Camaro Z28
Engine: 4.9L V8 (302 C.I.)
Horsepower: 290 @ 5800 RPM
Torque: 290 ft-lbs @ 4200 RPM
Transmission: 4 Speed Manual
0-60 MPH: 7.4 Seconds
Top Speed: : 135 MPH
Lights: RS Package Hideaway Lights
On June 28, 1966, General Motors held a live press conference in Detroit’s Statler-Hilton Hotel. It was the first time that 14 cities were connected in real time for a press conference via telephone lines. Chevrolet general manager Pete Estes started the news conference stating that all attendees of the conference were charter members of the Society for the Elimination of Panthers from the Automotive World and that this would be the first and last meeting of SEPAW. Estes then announced a new car line, project designation XP-836, with a name that Chevrolet chose in keeping with other car names beginning with the letter C such as the Corvair, Chevelle, Chevy II, and Corvette. He claimed the name, suggests the comradeship of good friends as a personal car should be to its owner and that to us, the name means just what we think the car will do: go. The Camaro name was then unveiled. Automotive press asked Chevrolet product managers, what is a Camaro? The answer: a small, vicious animal that eats Mustangs.
The Camaro was introduced, as the name suggests, in direct response to the Mustang and the new “pony car” class of cars. Available as a two-door coupe or convertible with rear seats, the Camaro quickly evolved, becoming a reputable street performance car with seemingly endless interior, exterior and engine options. The true purpose behind the Camaro, however, was to race, and the Z28 package turned the Camaro into a race car for the road. The Z/28 performance package was designed (with further modifications) to compete in the SCCA Trans-Am Series. It included a solid-lifter 302 cu in (4.9 L) V8, 4-speed transmission, power disc brakes, and two wide “skunk” stripes down the hood and trunk lid.
Starting in the 1950’s, laws in the United States restricted freedom of headlight design for safety reasons. Lamps were required to meet requirements like 7 inch (178 mm) round sealed beams with high-beam filament on focus, low-beam filament off focus, and other laws requiring specific placement of headlamps on the car. Almost all Camaros came equipped with headlights that were similar to most other cars in the industry. However, ticking the RS Package on the option sheet changed that.
The RS was an appearance package that included hidden headlights, revised taillights with back-up lights under the rear bumper, RS badging, and exterior bright trim. This separated your Camaro with others, giving the car a much more menacing look. The hidden headlights were a design feature unseen on other cars. The doors which covered the lights were vacuum operated (one vacuum for both lights) opening outwards at the flip of a switch.