As a policyholder and avid Camaro collector and enthusiast, I am sharing this great story in celebration of the model's 50th birthday.
I bought this car in 2006 from the original family who had basically written the car off and had it stored outside in the elements, worse yet on grass and uncovered here in New Jersey where the seasons can be extreme. I recall prior to 2006 driving down this street ever so slowly always thinking what a shame that this piece of history is becoming nothing more than a yard planter. As would any car enthusiast and Camaro lover I decided to track down the owner and to my surprise it was the father of one of my sons friends. At this point I became excited that just possibly I might work something out to get this ragtop in my possession. Anxiously awaiting the next little league game when I would see Mr. Brown I prepared my comments and story in hopes I could land this deal. Not surprising Mr. Brown advised the car was not for sale as it had been in the family since new when his dad purchased the car as a surprise Christmas gift for his wife in 1966. To my disappointment but understanding I accepted the denial but continued to gaze at the old beauty every time I passed their residence.
Several years later I brought up the topic again and to my surprise Mr. Brown said "why would you want that car, its rusted away to nothing and cannot be worth much". Hoping to not show my true excitement and disbelief I arranged a date to see the car close up. Of course I arrived with my trailer and cash and boy am I glad I did. My son and I paid $500 in the form of five Franklin's, inflated the tires, loaded the car on the trailer and returned home.
I am only the second owner of this 1967 Camaro which was purchased by Mr. Brown senior as a Christmas Gift for his wife in 1966. This vehicle has never left Hunterdon and Somerset counties in NJ, having been sold by Werring Chevrolet – Oldsmobile in Basking Ridge NJ. The car has been carefully and meticulously restored to the condition it came out of the showroom after being assembled the fourth week of November 1966. This is one of the earliest built Camaro’s with complete history and documentation.
The story as shared by the family is that Christmas Eve 1966 was a snowy night and Mr. Brown advised his family he was going to help a neighbor in Basking Ridge NJ whose car had become stuck. Little did they know Mr. Brown would return with this car and tuck it into the garage unnoticed. The next morning Mrs. Brown and the entire family were overcome with sheer joy and excitement as the small box Mrs. Brown opened did not contain jewelry or any other trinket but rather two keys, one square for the ignition the other rounded for the glove box and trunk.
Amazingly the car has remained in a ten mile radius its entire life in northeast Hunterdon and northwest Somerset counties NJ. The storied life of this Deepwater Blue stripped down ponycar convertible is limited to the Brown's and now the Smith's.
Some additional information for you folks at Hagerty as follows:
The VIN and Cowl Tag on this Camaro on this one as follows:
1967 Camaro VIN Interpretation
1 = Chevrolet
2 = Camaro
3 = 6-Cylinder Engine
67 = Convertible Body
7 = Model Year
N = Norwood Ohio Assembly Plant
141334 = vehicle serial number sequence
1967 Camaro Cowl Tag Interpretation
• 11D = Build Date November,4th Week
• B = Interior Color Code - Blue
• ST 67 = Model Year
1 = Chevrolet
2 = Camaro
4 = Standard Interior
67 = Convertible
• NOR = Prod Plant, Norwood Ohio
• 41335 = Fisher Body Number
• TR 717 = Interior Trim Blue
Z = Standard Bucket Seats
• E = Exterior Color Code –
• 1 = Convertible Top Color, White
• D = Power Convertible Top
• 2MG = Power Glide Auto Trans with
1967 Camaro Facts:
• The first Camaro was introduced on September 26, 1966. This particular car was manufactured the fourth week of November 1966.
• The 1967 model was the only first generation Camaro to have both rear shocks mounted forward of the rear axle.
• The 1967 Camaros did not have side marker lights.
• The 1967 Camaro was the only Camaro model to have its VIN tag mounted to the door hinge pillar.
• Though similar to 1968, the 1967 instrument panel was unique to the year. Its padding did not fold over the corners as did the following year. And, with the exception of air conditioned models, the 1967 instrument panel did not have the side air (Astro Ventilation) vents.
• The ignition for the 1967 model (and 1968) was located on the dash.
• Chevrolet listed curb weight for the 1967 Camaro as 3,165 pounds for the 6-cylinder convertible.
• The 1967 was the only Camaro model to feature side vent windows.
• All 1967 Camaros had single leaf rear springs.
• The center console design used in 1967 was unique to the year.
• 230 Cubic Inch, 140 Horsepower straight or inline Six Cylinder Engine
• Power Glide Automatic Transmission
• Firestone Sup-R Belt G70-14 Red Sidewall tires are mounted on original 14” steel wheels color matched to body in Deepwater Blue.
• Exterior includes new quarter panels, fenders and door skins. Hood, cowl and trunk lid original. New floor pans left and right as well as trunk pan. Goodmark sheet metal was used in restoration. All glass including the windshield is original. Roof replaced, electric pump and reservoir rebuilt.
• Interior is all new and was completed by a local upholstery contractor who worked at a GM dealer in the 60’s and 70’s doing just that before he retired. I was lucky to find him as he meticulously completed the job. Seat belts are all original and color coded to match interior, not aftermarket or replica. I was offered $1000 just for the seatbelts from someone who wanted original blue belts, obviously I rebuilt and cleaned them to current functioning condition.
• Mechanically the motor was taken completely apart, boiled the block and rebuilt or replaced anything that was needed maintaining the starter, alternator, carburetor and anything that could be rebuilt and replaced with original equipment. All new wiring harness throughout vehicle with all lights, gauges, radio, heater, wipers, etc., working as they should.