The History of the Camaro

The Chevrolet Camaro has a rich history in the American culture.
It is categorizedair_ride_1967_camaro_007 as a pony car, with some versions known as a muscle car. It went on sale on September 29, 1966, for the 1967 model year and was developed as a contending version to the Ford Mustang. The vehicle shared it’s major components with the Pontiac Firebird, additionally presented for 1967.

Four unique generations of the Camaro were developed prior to manufacturing ending in 2002. The brand was restored on a concept car that developed into the fifth-generation Camaro with production starting on March 16, 2009.

Reports started running during April 1965 within the auto press that Chevrolet was preparing a competitor to the Ford Mustang, code-named Panther, prior to any sort of official news. On June 21, 1966, around 200 auto reporters received a telegram from General Motors explaining “…please save noon of June 28 for important SEPAW meeting. Hope you can be on hand to help scratch a cat. Details will follow…(signed) John L. Cutter – Chevrolet public relations – SEPAW secretary.” The next day, the same journalists received another telegram from General Motors stating, “Society for the Eradication of Panthers from the Automotive World will hold first and last meeting on June 28…(signed) John L. Cutter – Chevrolet public relations SEPAW secretary.”  These telegrams puzzled the vehicle reporters.

On June 28, 1966, General Motors held a live press conference in Detroit’s Statler-Hilton Hotel. It was to be the very first time in record that 14 cities were connected in real time for a press conference via telephone lines. Chevrolet general manager Pete Estes started the press conference stating that all attendees of the seminar were club members of the Society for the Elimination of Panthers from the Automotive World and that this would certainly be the very first and last conference of SEPAW. Estes then announced a new car line, task 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 also Corvette. The Camaro name was then unveiled. Automotive press asked Chevrolet product managers, what is a Camaro? and were informed it was a little, savage animal that consumes Mustangs.

Based on the book The Complete Book of Camaro: Every Model Since 1967, the name Camaro was conceived by Chevrolet merchandising manager Bob Lund and General Motors vice head of state Ed Rollett, while they were reading guide Heath’s French and English Dictionary by James Boïelle and by de V. Payen-Payne printed in 1936. In the book The Complete Book of Camaro, it explains that Mr. Lund and Mr. Rollett encountered the word camaro in the French-English dictionary to suggest friend, buddy, or comrade. The post further restarted Estes’s statement of just what the word camaro was implied to indicate, that the car’s name “suggests the comradeship of buddies, as a personal car must be to its proprietor”. In fact, the actual French word that has that definition is “camarade”, from which the English word “comrade” is acquired, and not “camaro”; “camaro” is not an identified word in the French language.

The Camaro was first shown at a press preview in Detroit, Michigan, on September 12, 1966, and then later in Los Angeles, California, on September 19, 1966. Public intro of the new version was on September 26, 1966. The Camaro was placed in car dealerships and officially placed for sale on September 29, 1966, for the 1967 version year.

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