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Gen 3 Camaro History

The run on Camaro’s third generation was 1982-1992. 1982 dawned with the newly designed third generation Camaro being the Motor Trend car of the year. The Camaro had undergone a major change with the wheelbase being shorter and the weight being reduced by almost 500 pounds. There were several “firsts” for the Camaro. For the fuel economy minded consumer, the Camaro was finally available with a 4 cylinder engine. 1983 saw the first year for a 5-speed transmission and a 4-speed automatic transmission in the Camaro. Once again in 1982, the Camaro was pressed into service to pace the Indianapolis 500.

The chrome bumper period was from 1970-1973, obviously due to the front and rear bumpers being chrome plated steel. The 1970 Camaro was about as far from the 1969 Camaro as you could get with the car being longer, lower and wider. The Camaro looked more like a pony car now with the roof being moved back giving it a longer hood and a shorter trunk lid. No expense was spared to make sure the Camaro was a direct threat to the Mustang. Performance packages were still available with big block and small block options while comfort and convenience options were also available to bring some refinement to the beast.

For the performance minded crowd, the third generation Camaro had several models which are highly desirable to collectors. The most well-known model was the B4Z Camaro better known as the iconic IROC (International Race Of Champions) and later the IROC-Z. Another curious model was the 1LE. Checking the right boxes on the order form (without Air Conditioning) tripped the light fantastic and brought you a Camaro to be used on the SCCA Showroom Stock Class circuit with big Corvette brakes, aluminum driveshaft and items removed for weight savings. Another new “package” which appeared in this generation was the B4C Special Service Package or “Police” package. The B4C got you an RS with the rip-roaring Z/28 drivetrain which was offered for sale to police departments nationwide and the general public if your dealer knew the right boxes to check on the COPO form.

For the luxury crowd, the Berlinetta was available. The Berlinetta model had been around since 1979. But, this “Starship Camaro” was light-years ahead of its time with its all-digital dash and stalk mounted AM/FM Cassette player which was attached to the console forward of the gear selector.

The convertible returned during the third generation after a complete absence in the second generation. These convertibles were not actually built by GM; but rather conversions of T-top models done by ASC. The convertible could be ordered in any flavor including the IROCZ.

1992 marked the 25th Anniversary of the Camaro and a “Heritage” package was available which gave the Camaro stereo stripes up the hood and down the deck which was reminiscent of the stripes in the late 60’s.

From 1982-1992, there were 1,184,433 Camaros produced with a myriad of options, interior colors and trim levels. The Third Generation Camaro is on its way to being a highly sought after collectible car. Good thing Rick’s Camaros has all the parts and accessories to keep your Third Generation Camaro looking good and running its best. Not a numbers-matching collector? No problem! Rick’s has everything you need for your daily driver or pro-touring Camaro as well.

fun facts:

In 1982 & 1983, the LU5 V8 was offered with Crossfire Fuel Injection which was a throwback to the Crossram intake available for purchase over the parts counter in 1968-1969.

In 1984, The Camaro Z/28 took top honors from Car and Driver and Road & Track. Even over the brand new Corvette body style.

One odd option to the Camaro in 1984 was the ’84 Sarajevo Olympics Package which consisted of orang/blue stripes and Winter Olympic decal emblems placed on 3,722 all white cars.