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Chevy Camaro – 50 Years of Awesome [Infographic]

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The 50th Anniversary of the Chevy Camaro

In 1967, two years after the release of the Ford Mustang, Chevy scrambles to get their pony car, the Camaro, into production. Celebrate the 50th anniversary of this all-American muscle car by reminiscing about key moments in the Camaro’s history. What generation of Camaro is your favorite? Let us know what model you’d love to add to your collection in the comments below.

Is it a Nova? No, It’s a Chevy Camaro

When is a Chevy Nova not a Chevy Nova? When it is used as the foundation for the first-generation Camaro. Yes, folks, the first Camaro has a 1968 Nova II chassis underneath but that is where the comparisons stop. Drop in a big block V8 with 375 hp and you have the 1967 Camaro. With 220,906 cars sold in the first year of production, the pony war is definitely on.

1969 Model Stands Out as One of the Best

In 1969, Chevy redesigns the Camaro inside and out. Many consider this model to be Camaro’s best. With a longer body and lower stance, it grips tightly into curves, earning it the nickname The Hugger.


The Official Pace Car of the Indy 500 in 1967 & 1969

When a hugger orange and white Camaro convertible is selected as the Pace Car for the 1969 Indy 500, the car earns a unique track record. It becomes the first car to serve as an Indy 500 pace car two times in the first three years of production. We got the chance to speak with the owner of one of these highly sought-after collector cars. Check out our video interview and see if you agree that this Camaro is a pretty sweet ride.

1969 - The Year of the COPO

In 1969, Chevy allows select dealers to request a limited number Central Office Production Order Camaros or COPOs. There are two in the series - # 9560 and #9561. COPO #9560 has an all-aluminum 425 hp ZL-1 427 engine and is considered the fastest, most valuable Camaro made. There are only 69 known to exist. COPO # 9561 has an all-iron big block engine that generates 425 hp. The car maker delivers all 1,015 of these legendary muscle cars to Yenko Chevrolet in Pennsylvania. They are the holy grail of the muscle car collecting world.

The Camaro Z28 is Born

With the second-generation Camaro Z28, Chevy introduces European styling. Comparable in looks to the Ferrari Lusso 250 GT, this model’s power stems from the 350 hp Corvette LT-1 engine under the hood. Camaro sales are hot! Chevy reaches an all-time high in 1979 with 282,571 cars sold.

The Camaro IROC-Z Becomes an 80s Icon

If the 80s make you think of disco, spandex and anemic car engines, you are forgetting the iconic 1985 Camaro IROC-Z. Inspired by the race cars of the International Race of Champions (IROC-Z) Racing Series, the 215 hp engine is what makes it a rock star. It puts the 4-cylinder 90 hp Iron Duke power plant in the 1982 Camaro to shame.

35 Years of Production Come to an End

Sadly, Federal regulations suck the muscle out of this muscle car and Camaro sales never rebound. In 2002, Chevy decides to bring 35 years of continuous Camaro production to an end. Shocked fans begin lobbying for the return of their beloved car.

The Camaro is Reborn in 2010

Chevy relents, and the Camaro’s 2007 comeback heads for the big screen, rather than the showrooms. The blockbuster film, Transformers, introduces the world to a new, more powerful Camaro. Three years later, after an eight-year “sabbatical”, the fifth-generation Camaro returns to production. Named World Car Design of the Year, Chevy sales skyrocket. Models like the 2010 SS, featuring a 6.2L 426 hp V8 engine, prove the new Camaro is the rebirth of a classic.

Camaro Celebrates With a 50th Anniversary Limited Edition

Today the Camaro line continues to thrive. In honor of its 50th anniversary, Chevy released a limited edition 2017 Camaro with a 455 hp V8 engine and a top speed of 165 mph. With speed like that, no one is worried about how to blow out all those candles.



Collector and Classic Car Insurance for Less

The Chevy Camaro is among America’s greatest and longest-running nameplates. Whether you own one of these fabulous muscle cars or a whole collection, Classic Auto Insurance wants to help you protect them. Our friendly, knowledgeable staff can answer all your questions and customize a policy to meet your needs. Visit our website at or contact us at 888-901-1338 to see how we can help safeguard your dream car.
Posted: 4/27/2017 12:00:00 AM with 0 comments

For 100 Years and Counting, Tow Trucks Still the Ones to Call


Who You Gonna Call? – A Tow Truck, Of Course

You never think about a tow truck until you need one. Their calling is that of a guardian angel, silently waiting until they roll into action. It is hard to imagine a time when tow trucks aren’t in service. Over a century ago, the only way to rescue a stranded motorist is with four-legged horsepower. There is no American Automobile Association (AAA) or roadside assistance. So, who you gonna call? Thanks to one Tennessee gentleman’s bright idea, we can always call a tow truck, known then as wreckers.

Celebrating 100 Years of Service

In 2016, the 100th anniversary of Ernest Holmes Sr.’s invention of the tow truck is celebrated in his hometown of Chattanooga, TN. After struggling for eight hours to pull a friend’s Ford Model T out of a ditch using horses, Holmes set out to find an easier solution. His tow truck design features a wrecker bed mounted on a 1913 Cadillac touring car chassis. The prototype struggles to deliver until outriggers are added to help stabilize the vehicle during use.



Holmes 485 Wrecker is Now Worth $250,000

The first model built by the Ernest Holmes Company is the Holmes 680, which sells for $680 and could not generate profitable sales. The Holmes 485, with its lower price of $485, becomes the company’s first successful production model. The hoisting apparatus is built on the chassis of a used 1913 Locomobile. Today, the estimated worth of the Holmes 485 is $250,000.

The Wrecker Goes to War

In 1942, the Holmes Company furnishes the Army with Holmes W-45 military wreckers for active duty in WWII. These transports play a large part in resupplying troops as they advance through Germany. In 1959, the company patents the tow sling and car dolly, a staple for towing cars behind other vehicles.


The International Towing and Recovery Museum in Chattanooga, TN

Chattanooga is to the tow truck world what Detroit is to the automobile industry. It is the home of the International Towing and Recovery Museum. Chronicling the history of “wreckers” from their humble beginnings to modern times, the Museum features a wall to commemorate tow truck drivers killed while responding to a call. Every year, around 60 operators lose their lives, usually after being hit by 18-wheel trucks. The Museum is working to bring awareness to the dangers of the profession. There are currently 392 names on the wall.

Classic Car Enthusiasts Collecting Tow Trucks, Too

Recently, the popularity of buying personal flatbed tow trucks has grown among car enthusiasts. For those collectors that frequently venture out to find cars to restore, it is an ideal solution. They no longer need to arrange transport for the car back to home base. Whether a classic or a new-fangled model, their trusty tow truck can take care of it.



Vintage Wrecker Like a Life-Sized Tonka Toy

Restored vintage wreckers are popping up at auctions across the country. A beautiful 1927 Chevy Wrecker 1-Ton crosses the auction block at a resent Mecum sale. Part of the Bob McDorman Collection, this beautiful green truck has wood spoke wheels, hand painted signage and a crane built by the Manley Manufacturing Company. It’s just like a life-sized Tonka toy truck, and has to be one of the legendary Chevy aficionado’s favorites.

America’s Tow Truck Operators Always Ready to Rescue

Sometime in our lives, we’ve probably been rescued by our local tow truck operator at least once. Sitting on the side of the road in the dead of night, theirs are the headlights we rejoice in seeing. For this 100-year-old rite of automotive passage, tow trucks have come to our aid, 24/7/365. So, for these underappreciated, overworked individuals and their great trucks, extend a hand of thanks for keeping America rolling (and for saving our bacon!)

Collector and Classic Car Insurance for Less

When your newly restored classic breaks down, the last thing you want is to worry about is damage caused from towing. At Classic Auto Insurance, we understand. Our standard coverage includes flatbed towing to help protect your precious cargo. From tiered mileage plans to agreed value, our knowledgeable staff can answer all your questions and tailor the right policy to fit your needs. Visit our website at or call and see how we can help safeguard your dream car.



Coming Soon from Classic Auto – Project C-10

From vintage wreckers to hard-working pickups, we love all kinds of trucks. Which is why we are devoting the entire year to restoring a 1965 Chevy C-10 Truck. Stay tuned for video updates on Project C-10, powered by American Modern. It’ll be a classic. To help whet your appetite until then, enjoy this blog on the first-generation C-10 trucks and why our passion for them hasn’t waned.
Posted: 4/20/2017 12:00:00 AM with 0 comments

1959 Ford Thunderbird - One. Fabulous Ride. Restored. [Video]


1959 Ford Thunderbird at the 2016 Indianapolis World of Wheels

Have you ever seen a car you couldn’t forget? That is the way it is for us with this fabulous snow white 1959 Ford Thunderbird from the 2016 World of Wheels in Indianapolis. Long, low and oh so beautiful, owner Randy Erickson tells us her story. Watch our video and share it with friends. We’d love to know what you think about this great looking T-bird. Leave us a comment!

Nana’s Ride is One of the Family

For Randy, this car is more family member than transportation. “It’s one week younger than I am,” he laughs. “My grandmother brought it home about the same time I came home.” Randy and his family call her Nana’s Ride. She’s a one-family car and her restoration is a labor of love.


Bringing the Thunderbird Back to Its Original Glory

After Randy inherits the T-Bird, it sits in the garage for almost 20 years. “Kids, work, life – everything got in the way of fixing it up,” he says. When it is time to set the wheels in motion, he enlists the help of Vail’s Classic Cars, Inc. in Greenfield, IN. Randy wants it back to its original glory, just the way it was when Nana drove it off the lot. He wants to make it more drivable for him and his wife. Vail’s had their work cut out for them.


Some Upgrades Included

Returning the car to original factory specs includes installing a 390-cubic inch engine and a Cruise-O-Matic transmission. Randy wasn’t opposed to upgrades, though. Air conditioning, better brakes and modern electronics are added. Vail’s even installs a CD player behind the old AM radio front to keep the integrity of the interior.

The T-Bird Outsells Early Corvettes

Introduced in 1955, the original two-seater Thunderbird garners solid sales. Outselling the Chevy Corvette during the first three years in production isn’t enough for the Ford executives. They order a re-design for the second-generation T-Birds to make it a true four-seater sports car. Ford’s plan to market to women and families works because sales of the new model go through the roof. Even Nana buys one!

1959 Thunderbird Ford’s Luxury Sports Car

To accommodate a full-size backseat, Ford adds an extra two feet of length. The car is now lower and longer, which forces Ford designers to introduce a full-length interior console (complete with ashtrays and instruments), which hides a higher drivetrain tunnel. Stylish and sophisticated, the 1959 Thunderbird is Ford’s most expensive luxury model at the time.

Restore It and Enjoy It

Randy plans to show Nana’s Ride over the next few years, and then he plans to hit the road. “We wanted to restore the car in a way we could do both. My wife and I want to take it out and enjoy it.” Something tells us his grandmother is very proud of her family and her beautifully restored snow white T-Bird. It’s one hard-to-forget car!

Collector and Classic Car Insurance for Less

Inheriting a car is how many owners get into collecting. If you are new to owning a classic car, realize that specialty car insurance is different from regular car insurance. Classic Auto Insurance is a leader in collector and classic car insurance and can help you customize a policy that is right for your needs. Let our knowledgeable staff show you how to protect your classic for less. Visit our website at and see how we can help safeguard your new dream car.
Posted: 4/13/2017 12:00:00 AM with 0 comments

WWII Vet’s 1967 Mustang Restoration Unveiled at 2017 WOW Indianapolis [Video]


WWII Veteran’s 1967 Ford Mustang Restored

At the 2017 World of Wheels in Indianapolis, we hear the story of the classic car community coming together to right a wrong and bring joy back to 95-year-old WWII veteran Harry Donovan. An amazing group of people come together to not only restore Harry’s 1967 Ford Mustang, they renew our faith in each other. Our video captures only a slice of this effort. Invite your fellow car enthusiasts to take a look and share in this great experience.

Down but Not Out

Harry’s story begins with his beloved Mustang, a gift to his wife 50 years ago. As is the case for many of us, time goes by and we put things like restoring our cars on the back burner. When Harry finally decides to hire someone to do the work, the outcome is not a happy one. The man he hires does nothing but take his money, strip his car of valuable parts and leaves him helpless. Things look bleak, until the IndyStar decides to write a story.



Help from a Local Car Restorer

When Ken Mosier of Finer Details Automotive Restoration in Danville, IN reads about Harry’s plight, he knows he can help. Like all gearheads, Ken jumps at the chance to roll up his sleeves and correct the wrong done to Harry and his Mustang. Ken has been restoring classic cars into show-quality works of art for 30 years. If ever there is a team that could tackle this job, it is the one at Finer Details.

Harry’s Friends Come to His Rescue

A full restoration like the one Harry’s Mustang needs usually costs around $50,000. Once veteran’s groups, businesses and plain old folks hear about Harry, offer of money and parts start rolling in. A GoFundMe page is set up to help defer costs. The generosity of the people of Indiana and beyond quickly becomes evident. Harry has friends and they all are happy to help.


Nothing Worthwhile is Ever Easy

Harry’s car is in bad shape. The engine, transmission and hood are all missing. The body has extensive rust due to being abandoned outside by the scammer. This isn’t going to be an easy restoration. When Ken brings the Mustang to the World of Wheels event, the car is still unfinished. A team of volunteers spend over 800 hours working on the exterior just to get it ready. The shiny new paint job and vinyl top is enough to bring tears to Harry’s eyes.


Dreams of Best in Show

There is still a lot of work to be done. Even though money has been raised, more is needed. The Finer Details team has the engine, transmission and interior yet to tackle. They are determined to turn this Mustang into a Concours-quality gem, because Harry deserves that. All our vets deserve that and much more for their service.

Genuine Comradery of the Classic Car Community

For this former B-17 bomber pilot, the miracle is not that his Mustang is being restored; it’s that his faith in the goodness of people is renewed. It speaks volumes about the genuine comradery of the classic car community. We applaud the Finer Details team and all the volunteers who continue to work on Harry’s Mustang, and we congratulate Harry on the beautiful classic he now owns. We have to ask one favor – can we have a ride when she’s done?! Looking forward to seeing you at the next car show, Harry!

Collector and Classic Car Insurance for Less

Knowing who to trust with your classic car repairs has always been tough. At Classic Auto Insurance, we understand once you find the right shop, you want to stick with them. Our customized policies are based on agreed value and allow you to use the repair shop of your choosing. Select from one of our flexible mileage plans, rollover miles and flatbed towing service to build the coverage you need. Let our expert staff show you how to get collector and classic car insurance for less. Visit our website at and see how we can help safeguard your dream car.
Posted: 4/6/2017 12:00:00 AM with 0 comments

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