Classic Car Watch
1969 Chevrolet Camaro

NOTE: This column displays cars I have found on the Internet. I am not selling them. Please follow the links if you are interest in a car. Be mindful of the date this article was published. For an explanation why I do this read the original column here.

February 8, 2018
By Scott Lewis

In our previous installment we looked at the various Monte Carlos available for sale. This time I want to take a look at Camaros, specifically 1969. The 69 Camaro is a cliché in that it is THE Camaro. It is the most popular (at least it was for a very long time). Unfortunately, even though it is a cliché I like it the most of the 1st Gen Camaro (1967-1969).

There are way more 1969 Camaros out there than there are Monte Carlos for all three years of 70-72. This will make my selection criteria harder. Whereas I would concede on options, color & condition with a Monte Carlo at or below $25K, there is only 1 1969 Camaros below under $25K. Nice ones start above $25K and go very high, very quickly.

The first car below is going to be my benchmark. It is a Fathom Green 1969 Camaro SS with a #'s Matching 350 and an Automatic with the Console & horseshoe shifter. This car also has a factory tach in the dash and the 4 gauges at the end of the console. I should be done, right? Why keep looking. It does not have A/C. That alone is not a deal breaker as I will just add a Vintage Air system to the car. It is the price of $39,995 that has me looking for something... not so nice.

As a benchmark it is fantastic. It completely level sets me. If I see a car that is even close to the price of this Fathom Green masterpiece, it better be at least as good or I can just walk right on past. That sounds easier than it is. I will look at every car as a compromise, but how much compromise can I live with... and at what cost. For instance, the second car below is a blue example with a 307 engine and a 3 speed manual transmission. It is $29,999. A clean survivor. I like that. We are done, right? Not so fast. The 307 V-8 is a slug, and nothing to write home about. A performance engine it is not. The 3 speed manual is the cheapest possible transmission you can have behind that engine (though still better than the crappy 2 sleep Powerglide automatic). I would be looking to replace the 3 speed with a 5 or 6 speed. At least all the pedals and such are there. Of course we have to decide if we want to invest money in adding horsepower to a lame 307 or just go straight for a nice crate motor.

The reason this is a dilemma is that it will cost more than the difference between these two cars to make the blue one as nice as the Fathom Green one. Oops!

Everything else is going to be somewhere between these two extremes. Price vs. condition is going to be a huge concern here.

1969 Camaro SS - $39,995 (link)

1969 Chevrolet Camaro 1969 Chevrolet Camaro

Description: Fathom Green over Black, 350 #'s Match, Auto w/ Console and Gauges.

Notes: If this car was just a little cheaper. How much cheaper? If I could have this car for $35 I would buy it and be done with this exercise. That would leave just a little money left in my budget (which is a bit flexible, but likely $38K all in for the perfect car) to ship it to me and add A/C. This car is the 800 pound gorilla. Beautiful exterior, perfect black interior with factory tach and gauges on the console. Perfect. Can we find something as nice for a little less money. Clearly this is the benchmark for everything to come.

1969 Camaro - $29,999 (link)

Jumbo Picture of Classic '69 Chevrolet Camaro located in Atlanta Georgia - MPAZ Jumbo Picture of 1969 Camaro located in Atlanta Georgia - $29,999.00 - MPAZ

Description: Blue over Black, 307, 3 Speed Manual.

Notes: Here is what would have been the perfect blank canvas for a project car back in the day. And I remember when a car like this would sell for around $2,000 as just another used car. I have a hard time considering this car... at $30K. Look at the next car below for just another $3K. It looks near show quality. Way nicer than this car. But it is not a #'s matching car. However this car has a 307. Who cares if a 307 is #'s matching.

1969 Camaro - $32,950 (link)

1969 Chevrolet Camaro 1969 Chevrolet Camaro

Description: Blue with Black over Black, 350 NOM, Auto, Console.

Notes: Holy Cow! A Blue 69 Camaro. And the vinyl roof looks great. There are three reasons I don't stop looking and buy this car. 1) It does not have A/C. 2) It is not a #'s matching car. I have said in the past that #'s matching is not hugely important to me. But that was when I was thinking about cars in the $15-20K range. At over $30K I start wondering for resale value, should that become necessary. It is not a show stopper here. 3) It sold. Yes, this is the second car I am showing you (one last time) that sold before I could reach out and contact the selling dealer. Oops!

1969 Camaro - $36,900 (link)

Description: Glacier Blue over Black, 350, Auto on Column, New Braunfels, Texas.

Notes: This car is next on my list because I am going to visit it very soon (likely 2 days after this column goes online). It is local, so... there it makes it easy to look at. The car seems pricey. Also... a column shift in a Camaro. This will give me a very good indicator on the quality of car I get for a car at the top of my budget. And it will tell me what I can expect from price vs. condition at the dealer it is at. I plan on looking at 10-12 cars ranging from $20-40K at this dealer. It should be quite educational, but that is for another column (stay tuned).

1969 Camaro - $29,900 (link)

Description: Blue over Black, 350, 5 Speed.

Notes: Here is another reason not to buy the 307 car above... for the same money. This car has a 350 and a 5 Speed manual trans. It looks better two. Granted, the ad is way to shallow on details of the car, but it is worth calling about. I think I will do that right after my visit to the dealer in New Braunfels this weekend.

1969 Camaro - $29,000 (link)

Jumbo Picture of Classic 1969 Camaro RS - $29,000.00 Offered by a Private Seller - IYVY Jumbo Picture of Classic 1969 Camaro RS - $29,000.00 - IYVY

Description: Green with Black over Green, 307 #'s Match, Auto w/ Console.

Notes: See... a nice Camaro for under $30K. We absolutely need better photos though.

1969 Camaro - $33,995 (link)

Description: Green with Black over Green, 350, 4 Speed w/ console.

Notes: The color of green on the interior is a bit of a pill to swallow. What is up with the dash pad? There is something wrong there. This car is located in the Dallas/Fort Worth area of Texas. I am going to try to get up there soon to see this car in person. If I like it I will make an offer... and start planning to fix that dash, and add A/C. They don't mention if it is a #'s matching car. At $34K we have a very hard decision to make.

1969 Camaro - $34,500 (link)

Description: Orange over Black, 350, Auto w/ Console.

Notes: Notice this is a Z/28 clone in appearance (as the Z/28 in 69 came only with a 302 and 4 speed). That's fine. Overall this car seems pricey without something a little more special. If it was a numbers matching car I would consider it. Or if it had A/C. But I think I like this car with a $4K discount.

1969 Camaro - $32,000 (link)

Jumbo Picture of Classic '69 Chevrolet Camaro - $32,000.00 Offered by a Private Seller - KU2H Jumbo Picture of '69 Camaro - $32,000.00 Offered by a Private Seller - KU2H

Description: Garnet Red over Red, 427, Auto w/ Console.

Notes: A big block. Check out those custom wheels. Steelies... in size 18/20 with dog dish hub caps. That's cool. I like it. So... do I want to live with a big block Camaro? That's worse that a big block Monte Carlos since the engine is far enough back in a Monte Carlo that the small block cars are almost exactly 50/50 weight distribution. The big block in the Camaro is going to make this very nose heavy. Oh, and get horrible gas mileage.

1969 Camaro RS - $21,000 (link)

Description: Triple Black with Houndstooth, 350, Auto w/ Console, A/C.

Notes: This car looks too good to be true at only $21,000. And I have seen this ad on GoodGuy's for a while. It has a dated posted of April 8, but does not list a year. I sent an email to the address in the ad, but no response so far.

1969 Camaro - $28,825 (link)

Description: Orange over Black, 350, Auto w/ Console.

Notes: There is nothing special here, but the price. Looks to be a clean 69 Camaro under $30K. There is no text description. What size are those wheels. Likely they need to be replaced and the stance set right. But because of the price I want more info.

1969 Camaro SS - $38,000 (link)

1969 Camaro SS Coupe 1969 Camaro SS Coupe

Description: Blue with White over White Houndstooth, 350/300, Auto w/ Console and Gauges, A/C.

Notes: The photos of this car need some serious work. Especially at this price. If you are selling a car for $38K, either a) use a good phone to take pictures, or b) get a friend with a real camera to take some nice photos. Let's get past that for a second. This has everything I want in a 69 Camaro. Well, except a white vinyl top. They don't mention if it is a #'s matching engine. Regardless, I am going to reach out very soon.

1969 Camaro SS Tribute - $31,500 (link)

1969 Chevrolet Camaro 1969 Chevrolet Camaro

Description: Red over Black, 350 NOM, Auto w/ Console & Gauges.

Notes: I can't find anything wrong with this car except it is missing A/C. I love all the factory style gauges. This is why I can't imagine the blue 307 powered car selling for $30K. This car does not "seem" to be as nice as the Blue one above for $32,900 (which already sold). This is one of those times when you wish you could see these cars side by side.

Ladies and gentlemen, I think we have found the car I want. Being that it is in Massachusetts, I will need to find a reputable company to inspect it for me. Then arrange shipping if all goes well. I will reach out the this dealer after I take a trip to Dallas/Fort Worth to see what is available close enough to drive home.


That's 12 more cars (13 listed minus one sold) to add to my list of cars I am interested in. As you can tell from the comments above, I am getting more particular. Half of these cars I would not call about unless the other half fell through as unacceptable. That's progress.

This Saturday I am off to see a 1970 Pontiac Grand Prix with a #'s matching 455 and 77K original miles. Wow! This is were getting a "big" block will be defined. Notice I put big in quotes. That is because Pontiac did not have a big block in the traditional sense. The block.. is the same from the 326 all the way up to the 455. Same external dimensions. There are some slight variations (which I am not familiar with), but the point is it is not like a Chevy bib block that adds a lot more weight under the hood to get the cubic inches. That means nothing when this car gets 10 mpg.

After seeing the Grand Prix I am off to A&E Classic Cars in New Braunfels. They have the Glacier Blue Camaro above for $36,900. I have a list of  10 cars from their web site that I want to see. From a 1970 Monte Carlo for $20K to a 1966 Mustang GT for $38,900. This will give me an idea of the quality for the price at a dealer. It will also give me an idea of what pictures on a web site translate to seeing a car in person.

I will report back here very soon after that trip.

Until then... and the next car to get this treatment... enjoy your weekend.