1969 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 for auction at Mecum | 4 of 69 built

By: Alex Affat, Unique Cars magazine

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ZL1 4 front ZL1 4 front
ZL1 4 ZL1 4
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ZL1 4 engine ZL1 4 engine

The fourth ever ZL1 Camaro could be yours

Just 69 first-generation Chevrolet Camaro ZL1s escaped the GM factory back in 1969, as what would remain the General’s fastest cars for decades following.

The aluminium 427ci V8 was originally intended for Can-Am racing and destined to sit under the bonnet of a Corvette but factory-savvy Dealers flouted the notorious COPO (Central Office Production Order) system – allowing them to specially order vehicles from the factory to largely limitless specification.

The COPO system’s intended use was commercial and fleet vehicles, but a number of dealers throughout the USA quickly realised they could create ludicrously silly and powerful cars outside what was offered in the standard GM model range.

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A notorious COPO-craftsman, and Chevrolet Dealer, named Fred Gibb later pitched the ZL1 to Chevrolet, who approved of the manufacturing as long as they ordered at least 50 cars.

As such, the legend was born, with 69 cars ultimately produced.

The fourth ever produced vehicle, of that initial run of 69 Camaro Zl1s is up for auction in the US at Mecum, set to go under the hammer tomorrow (October 25 US-time) in Chicago.

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Originally delivered to Hauser Chevrolet in Pennsylvania, the car is finished in Cortez Silver over black standard vinyl interior. The correct factory COPO 9560 427ci V8 still resides in the engine bay, mated to a Turbo 400 Automatic gearbox and the original Positraction rear end.

The car has undergone a comprehensive restoration by Camaro expert Bill Glowacki.

No estimate is listed, but previous 1969 Camaro Zl1s have easily fetched north of six-figures – we expect no less of this rare and early-build car.

Won’t make it to Chicago in time? Check out the Camaros we have available on our classifieds!

 

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