21 March 2017

eBay Find of the Week: That Camaro Z28 you wanted in high school

1984 Chevy Camaro Z28

General Motors’ third generation F-body cars (Camaro and Firebird) don’t get as much attention as their older siblings. Perhaps it’s because we rarely see really clean examples of these cars. They certainly sold well enough (Camaro handily outsold Mustang in 1984, in fact), but their plasticky exteriors and large graphics turn some people off. Additionally, their performance lacks compared to early-‘70s and fourth generation (1993-2002) Camaros, leaving them unloved for a long time. But it’s worth noting that Car and Driver named the 1984 Camaro Z28 the best-handling car built in the U.S. at the time. Not very important for drag racing, but helpful if there are any interesting roads in your future.

The Z28 was the top of the line performance trim through 1984, with the IROC Z trim supplanting it the following year. This example includes the optional 190 hp 305-cid V-8 mated to a four-speed automatic transmission. The seller says little about the vehicle but included many nice photos of what appears to be a reference-quality original car. This has us looking for a black Members Only jacket to match the car.

Most impressive is this 34,000-mile Camaro’s near pristine condition. It’s rare to see a Camaro of this vintage with its original interior trim so unmolested. It even includes the original vinyl bag to store and protect the t-top panels.

Bidding was at $7,700 with reserve not met at the time this was written.

12 Reader Comments

  • 1
    Nick Lena Rock Tavern, NY March 22, 2017 at 20:12
    Great article on the 1984 F body Camaro. They are definitely the most under appreciated Camaro. I purchased and restored an 85 Z28 which is insured by Hagarty. The engine has been upgraded to an old school carburated, 5.7 liter SBC with T56 6 speed transmission, vinyl wrap, dual exhaust, headers, posi rear and much more. These cars are easy to work on and parts are readily available. As you said in the article one of the cars I always wanted.
  • 2
    Betty Lanaville Lake City, Michigan March 22, 2017 at 21:50
    I own a 1989 Z28 with 33,000 miles.It's all original. I'm the second owner. What would this be worth. It's mint. It's a convertible.
  • 3
    Charles North Carolina March 23, 2017 at 03:28
    As the long term owner of two very low mileage unmolested Trans AM's of the same vintage, these cars are not as bad as I have heard many people say. One of my TA's has the WS6 option which uses the same suspension parts as the Z-28. The other is a WS7, which uses the same components, except that the rear brakes are drum instead of disc's. At shows these cars are turning up modified in all sorts of ways. The most popular is a LS conversion, however I have seen big blocks stuffed in them as well. The 350 small block is an easy drop in conversion for third gen cars that were only offered with a 305 engine. The cars that seem to be holding their values and are even increasing are the highly optioned, low mileage, unmolested originals. That's the stance I have taken regarding ownership of two of these cars. Maintaining originality can be more challenging then upgrading, as often aftermarket parts support is limited to upgrades rather then OEM style parts. My cars are both sorted out with fresh tires, hoses, belts, batteries, and other wear items that just won't last 30 plus years. I tend to keep OE pieces to go with the vehicles if they are ever sold. By maintaining the cars in excellent mechanical condition they are actually fun to drive as weekend cruisers. I got a real eye opener last fall while participating in a cruise in the Smoky Mountains, I decided to drive the 86 TA. Equipped with the 305 TPI engine, the car will do mid 15 second quarter mile runs all day without fail, and is obviously no race car. We found that in real life mountain road driving with traffic and other issues such as fog and rain, the car was able to stay up with the most modern forms of muscle cars offered today, and never broke a sweat. Granted in a drag race on a closed track the poor little TA would be an embarrassment performance wise in stock form. There is actually a lot of fun to be had from one of these 80's F-bodies. My other muscle car is a 2015 Mustang GT Premium with a modified Coyote 5 liter pushing 475 RWHP through a six speed manual, so I know what a fast car feels like...
  • 4
    Jonathan Bartsch Hawaii March 23, 2017 at 05:43
    That is a super cool car. Maybe some don't like these because they don't have the old style but they are fun and pretty cheap. My wife has a first generation which is super cool but we fell in love and first kissed in a third generation. It was a Blue 86 IROC with T-tops We want to find it and get it back! :)
  • 5
    Bob Crow Port St. Lucie, FL March 23, 2017 at 08:28
    These handle well, get 20+ mpg and can be good highway cruisers. I have an all original 3rd gen 1986 Trans Am with 120,000 on it. Powertrain and steering still works like new. Had to repaint it 3 years ago because of clear coat delamination. I regularly get complements at stop lights.
  • 6
    IROC86 Pleasure Island, NC March 23, 2017 at 09:32
    I had the 86 IROC version in this color scheme. For a quick sec, thought you found my car. Never performed as good as it looked, though. I may very well have driven it wearing the members only jacket that you mentioned also. So were the times!
  • 7
    richard venn Wisconsin March 24, 2017 at 06:33
    Had exact same car except it was an 86 ....Deleted the stripes above the gold and added the iroc wheels ......Great handling car wish I still had it .....Sure the person who stole it enjoyed it
  • 8
    Matt Kempton Pennsylvania March 26, 2017 at 13:52
    I worked at Budget Rent a Car in 1983. They had the V-6 version of the Firebird. I always loved driving it between locations when I got the chance. Always remember that stiff gas pedal though.
  • 9
    Rick Beck CLERMONT, IN USA March 26, 2017 at 12:00
    I owned a 1982 Z28 a 1984 Z28 H.O. (L69) and a 1990 IROC 5.0 Litre 5spd manual . I loved the Styling of these cars and they were FUN to drive!
  • 10
    Sal Esposito NJ March 27, 2017 at 10:15
    These cars often get a bad rap because most of the ones sold were not equipped with the best performance options. I was a teen back in the mid-late 80's when thirdgen TA's, Formulas, IROCs, and Z28s were everywhere. Most were of the 305 4bbl or TBI variety and saddle with automatics. If you were smart with the order sheet, you could have gotten a 305 HO with a 5 speed and 3.73 gears that could break into the 14's. And in the later years, you could get a 305 TPI with 5 speed or a 350 TPI auto that could easily run mid 14's-fast cars for their time and still respectable today.
  • 11
    B.M.Gauthier Rosamond,Ca. April 4, 2017 at 11:04
    I've just about got my cleaned up 1986 Z-28 IROC done, bought new in Van Nuys Ca. 45,990 miles on the clock, didn't drive it much, stored well and all original drive train. Runs as well as new, and its a kick to drive ! And of course its insured by Mr. Hagerty. Leaving the People's Republic of Californcation soon, Az. here we come.
  • 12
    Charles Chapman Florida Largo 33770 April 6, 2017 at 03:18
    1991 Z-28 Conv. Auto. All stock.40,000 For Sale.In the teen's

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