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: Most popular gen/year for the el camino?


lilbreeze0909
04-14-2006, 02:04 PM
I was curious, what is the most popular generation and year for the el camino? Such as what year made the most sales, and just what generation is loved by many? If anyone knows that would be great, just trying to get a idea on what year my new elky is going to be... :cool:

Mrapii
04-14-2006, 05:04 PM
1973-71,753
1979-64,960

Bowtie
04-14-2006, 05:27 PM
My response is technical like Mrapii's. Here's the numbers to crunch as you will:

http://www.chevelles.com/elcamino/ec_total.htm

If you want current opinions that will obviously be harder. Like an ole saying here in the south, "That's like nailing jello to a fence."

Take care.

a73elkyss
04-14-2006, 06:13 PM
1973-71,753
1979-64,960

Oh yea! What Mrapii said.... 8) I guess you can tell what my favorite year is.....

HypnoCamino
04-14-2006, 07:22 PM
4th gens are the best in my opinion, but hay thats just me.

SheaBurt

Sled85ccc
04-14-2006, 09:46 PM
well obviously 1985 was not only the best but also the most popular year, I mean c'mon... what is better than an 85 Choo Choo?? Nothing!

'cept maybe an 85 Choo Choo with Brooke Burke behind the wheel...

Mrapii
04-14-2006, 10:41 PM
In 1985 total El Camino and Caballero sales were only 24,303; actually one of the lowest sales years.

Kerno
04-15-2006, 01:26 AM
The strongest in the marketplace is still the 1970. But if you want a true rarity, find a 1988. Not a misprint. There were 1988 El Camino's made. I've seen two of them. To the best of my knowledge all of the 1988s were 6 cylinder trucks. They were identical to the 1987's except most of them had Oldsmofbile seats in them.

a73elkyss
04-15-2006, 04:43 AM
But if you want a true rarity, find a 1988. Not a misprint. There were 1988 El Camino's made.

D'oh, now you went and done it. Stealin a thread....You opened up a "whole can of worms and woop a$$" with that one. :-D Just funnin with you, but you will get some comments regarding the '88.

The only thing I would love to see is if someone see's a '88 Elco, to get a picture of the VIN with the tenth digit as "I". That would prove it once and for all and put the mystery '88 Elco to bed.

Mrapii
04-15-2006, 07:25 AM
1988 El Camino, hmmm....haven't we been down this road before? Until someone actually verifies a VIN# 1987 El Camino V6s with "Oldsmofbile" seats won't qualify as 1988 models and of course there were the 1988s with "Pontimac" seats.

z3pr
04-15-2006, 08:27 AM
The 5th gen El Camino is by far my fav bodystyle.

bigjames4xl
04-15-2006, 03:01 PM
I like them all!

And I don't think the sales figures proove anything so far as desirability is concerned.

BUT, 3rd GENS RULE!!! :cool:

Bowtie
04-15-2006, 03:14 PM
Like I tell my motorcycle classes:

The best one is whichever one I am fortunate enough to be able to ride (drive) at the moment. The worst is anything that leaves me stranded at 3:00 AM. That is, until it's fixed. :-)

Take care.

Mrapii
04-15-2006, 05:15 PM
Sales did represent popularity when they were new. If Chevrolet El Caminos outsold Ford Rancheros (which they did) it was because the Chevys were more popular.

Maddening
04-15-2006, 05:49 PM
if you want a true rarity, find a 1988. Not a misprint. There were 1988 El Camino's made. I've seen two of them. To the best of my knowledge all of the 1988s were 6 cylinder trucks. They were identical to the 1987's except most of them had Oldsmofbile seats in them.

You're apparently new here, this discussion has been beaten to death, anyone who's been here a while doesn't need to be told "not a misprint" as we all know the "supposed" 1988 El Camino story. Until someone actually gets some real evidence though it's just an urban legend.

Bowtie
04-15-2006, 06:01 PM
Urban legend huh? Hey, with the $$$ I've put in my 84, I should be able to re-title it as a 2006! :lol: At least to hear my wife tell it. It's not that much really.

Here's my VIN: $&$&$&$&$&$&$&$&$

Take care.

1973elcaminoSS
04-15-2006, 09:01 PM
In my opinion, the elkies that went most out on a limb stylistically were the 73-77s. I like the single and stacked headlights and the curvy lines as well as how dang long they are. Unfortunately, I think the most bad paint decisions were these years as well. Mine is black with red racing stripes and looks pretty good. I've seen a lot of ugly pastel or two-tone 4th gens that are pretty hideous. If I had to pick my least favorite generation it would be 5th gens though I don't dislike them. They're a little too boxy for my tastes and then there's all the emissions crap and the fact that they didn't come with anything bigger than a pretty weak 305. Of course 4th gens have a lot of the same power issues but since I'm building mine up from an empty body I can do whatever the heck I want :) I also like cars that had available big blocks because it leaves plenty of room to work on the motor.

Mrapii
04-16-2006, 01:01 AM
A small correction, 1978 and 1979 El Caminos were vailablewith 350cid V8s. Also even though the 5th Gens are 12" shorter than the 4th Gens the wheelbase is actually 1" longer which I think actually results in a more balanced look.

bigjames4xl
04-16-2006, 06:37 AM
Sales did represent popularity when they were new. If Chevrolet El Caminos outsold Ford Rancheros (which they did) it was because the Chevys were more popular.


Sales also represents production totals, if more of some model years were made, then more would have been sold. Also you have to consider the total percentage of all autos produced to get the big picture, precentage wise, of each years total production/sales stats. If 1 gozillion autos were produced in 1959 but 4 gozillion autos were produced in 1973, that would have an effect on the actual "popularity" of a model based on sales/production wouldn't it?

Not trying to start anything, just food for thought.

Oh, and the elky/ranchero issue, that's a no brainer, Ford didn't have a better idea!

Mrapii
04-16-2006, 12:10 PM
In the final result the factories build the number of units that are sold. I was in the industry for many years and I am familiar with the process. Before the manufacturing process begins sales estimates are made, during the model year production adjustments are made and sales strategies might be changed but in the end the consumer by his purchase decides how many units are made.

Bowtie
04-16-2006, 12:26 PM
Mrapii, what you say sounds logical and I can accept it, but educate me a little. Isn't "studied" sales Projections still a big factor? Otherwise, how do they end up with fields and fields full of unsold vehicles?

Still, maybe it's splitting hairs anyway since all cars produced are technically "sold" anyway - even if they almost give them away. Thus, we end back to your position. Production = popularity (at least on paper)

Not that it would ever happen to a El Caminos you understand. :-)

Take care.

Mrapii
04-16-2006, 01:32 PM
Well of course even "the best laid plans of mice and men" go awry and overproduction may occur or sometimes sales estimates are too low and factories don't produce enough vehicles to support the sales volume but in most cases the car manufacturers get it right (or make it right). Believe it when I say overproduction of an unpopular car won't result in appreciably more sales although sales strategies (price lowering, rebates, etc.) can help to reduce excess inventory. Look at our beloved El Camino. Sales of the 5th Gen peaked in 1979 at 64,960 (including the GMCs), the second year of production. From there on it was all down hill with sales finally dropping to 15,625 in 1987, the final year of production. G-Body production went on for the final year in 1988 but GM decided that the low level of sales wasn't enough to warrant another year of El Camino production. There were other factors in the decision (such as plant facilities) but the final verdict was the El Camino was just not popular enough.

Kerno
04-16-2006, 03:21 PM
First, I am fairly new to the forum. Second, I did not know there had been a raging battle over the existence of a 1988 El Camino.
I do know that you can title a vehicle by model year instead of VIN year. That commonly happens in the building of motorhomes where the chassis is built in a given year but the conversion is finished in a later year. I personally own two vehicles which have model year registrations which vary from the VIN year. One is a motorhome, registered and kept in Arizona. The other is a Gen 5 1970 El Camino. Yeah, my "once was an 1980" is registered and titled by California as a 1970. Best of all, it has to comply with 1970 emissions regulations....jpgs of the actual titles are available since they are mine and not just things I heard about.
So, now to the issue of the 1988's. In doing a Google search, I came across a site that said several left over 1987's were sold as 1988's. It may well be that they were VIN'd as 87's but sold as 1988's. I was offered what was alleged to be an 1988 about a month ago, but did not go to look at it since I had no idea there was any controversy the existence of such a thing. I'll be back in California in 2 weeks and I will try and track it down and compare the VIN and the model year on the reg. Oh, Here's the site that said they existed: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Camino.
As a side note, I think any 1988 vehicle will have a "J" in the VIN since I don't think "I" and "O" are used in VINs.

Mrapii
04-16-2006, 05:46 PM
State DMVs do not determine model years, besides they make errors all the time. The model year is determined by the VIN# and Federal Certification. Obviously model year and calender year don't always coincide, some 2007 models are already being sold and sometimes a new car dealer may have old stock, brand new and never titled but several years old. Only the correct VIN# ("J") would authenticate a 1988 El Camino.

1973elcaminoSS
04-16-2006, 06:44 PM
A small correction, 1978 and 1979 El Caminos were vailablewith 350cid V8s. Also even though the 5th Gens are 12" shorter than the 4th Gens the wheelbase is actually 1" longer which I think actually results in a more balanced look.

Learn something new every day :) And yes, the 5th gens probably do look a little more balanced (and probably handle better as a result) but I'm a fan of cars that are a little more stylistically interesting and I feel the practicality of 80's cars took a lot of that away. For example, I love the shark vettes (late 60's through early 80's) but I really don't appreciate the next generation (which I refer to as doorstops). They got better mileage and handled nicer but they were boring looking. My dad has a 77 which is probably the least well they ever made a vette but the thing turns heads and is a blast to drive. I feel the same way about the mustangs. At least someone finally got around to making them not look like tiny boxes (80's), then later neons with different tailights (90's through recent 00s). As far as 80's cars go, elkies were some of the better looking ones (I have a friend who had an eagle and those were kind of cool too) but I still like my big curvy boat a little better (though I'm not particularly looking forward to parallel parking).

71Sprint
04-16-2006, 06:54 PM
Personally, I have always loved 3rd gen elcaminos. I just love the lines on it from front to back. Pulled mine out of the garage this morning and went to the convience store . As I got out got a Thumbs up from another driver.

I have never owned a vehicle that gets so much attention, and it's not even an SS.

Brian

66_elky
04-16-2006, 08:11 PM
here are the years i think are most popular in order 70.65,67,68-69,71,72

1973elcaminoSS
04-16-2006, 08:58 PM
here are the years i think are most popular in order 70.65,67,68-69,71,72

It's kinda funny you put 65 second... I had a 65 chevelle sedan (before it made close friends with a minivan one fateful night and became the donor car for the 73 elky I picked up) and one of the issues of chevelles is that the 64 and 65 were a fair amount less desirable as they really hadn't evolved into a muscle car yet (too boxy, no real fastback, less dramatic engine options). I personally loved it as people didn't expect a classy looking turquoise 65 sedan to move as fast as it did.

Mrapii
04-17-2006, 12:31 AM
How can you say that about the 1965 Chevelle Z16? It was (is) an awesome muscle car and certainly very valuable and desirable.

1973elcaminoSS
04-18-2006, 07:01 AM
How can you say that about the 1965 Chevelle Z16? It was (is) an awesome muscle car and certainly very valuable and desirable.

I'm guessing (as I don't have my midsize chilton's guide on hand) that this was some version of the 327? I know there was a pretty impressive 327 that pushed 350 HP around this time but I wasn't sure if it was in the chevelle that year. Somebody who knows a lot about 65s once told me they made a couple hundred with 396s but it was never really considered an option. And supposedly there's one 396 65 convertible out there.

Mrapii
04-18-2006, 08:36 AM
The Z16 was indeed the very rare 396cid/375hp 1965 Chevelle. While it was extremely hard to get it had an RPO and was considered a production vehicle.

John Harris
04-18-2006, 09:11 AM
I've been watching this thread quietly and hoping that it would take a slightly different approach. I'm not comfortable with the notion that the "most popular year Elky" is simply of reflection of how many of them were produced by GM. I think GM is stupid not to manufacture a current El Camino and a Nomad style vehicle. Just as dumb as when they discontinued the ever-popular Camaro. Just like Ford killed a great idea when they added a back seat to the Thunderbird and they went even further by making it a four-door! We all have our favorite examples of Detroit's geniuses screwing up over the years.

What I thought this thread would get around to was this: right now, from all the Elkies made from 1959 thru 1987 (ok, thru 1988), which one is the most popular with serious car enthusiasts?? Absolutely nothing to do with number of them made or still available! If price was no object and you could "order" a like-new version with no rust, no fading, etc., which one would you choose?? I can "afford" to play around with a 5th gen only because they are widely available at relatively low cost. But it's not my favorite.

For me, it would be a 1970 SS 454, in almost any color. It had great style, clean lines, lots of power, and all the characteristics of a "muscle car." That's what I'd like to find under my Christmas tree!

With this as the criteria, which one do our exceptional members think represented the best example of the El Camino concept??

Mrapii
04-18-2006, 09:23 AM
Good point John and I agree with you about the 1970 454 SS, but it would have to have the LS6 engine. And let me add another dimension to this question of Elky popularity: what El Camino would be your favorite if Chevrolet had built it? My choice is a Z16 version of the 1965 El Camino.

skinyfisher
04-18-2006, 10:20 AM
The first and 2nd gens were an attempt to get it right the 3rd was the winning Gens and the 69 and 70 are the most wanted and the most valuable today. The best lines and looks not the mention the BB era with HP. After that for me it fell apart a little , but any elky is a great car/truck and not an every day item. But the best is the one your driving. But GM has done its very best to mess things up for a long time. I want a 2007 SS572 El Camino with" HI-PER DRIVE"and I want it for $6000.00 delivered, but will pay a little more ???????? OK a lot more!

PaPa Johns 77
04-18-2006, 12:28 PM
8) I'd buy the sexiest Elky of them all! A red 1959 with a 348 three deuce and 3 speed with overdrive. I would have said 4 speed but did not know if it was offered! :cool:

bigjames4xl
04-18-2006, 12:54 PM
I've been watching this thread quietly and hoping that it would take a slightly different approach. I'm not comfortable with the notion that the "most popular year Elky" is simply of reflection of how many of them were produced by GM. I think GM is stupid not to manufacture a current El Camino and a Nomad style vehicle. Just as dumb as when they discontinued the ever-popular Camaro. Just like Ford killed a great idea when they added a back seat to the Thunderbird and they went even further by making it a four-door! We all have our favorite examples of Detroit's geniuses screwing up over the years.

What I thought this thread would get around to was this: right now, from all the Elkies made from 1959 thru 1987 (ok, thru 1988), which one is the most popular with serious car enthusiasts?? Absolutely nothing to do with number of them made or still available! If price was no object and you could "order" a like-new version with no rust, no fading, etc., which one would you choose?? I can "afford" to play around with a 5th gen only because they are widely available at relatively low cost. But it's not my favorite.

For me, it would be a 1970 SS 454, in almost any color. It had great style, clean lines, lots of power, and all the characteristics of a "muscle car." That's what I'd like to find under my Christmas tree!

With this as the criteria, which one do our exceptional members think represented the best example of the El Camino concept??



YEP, what you said!!!

I wasn't articulate enough to express what I ment with the prodution/sales numbers issue.

I think most people would agree the 3rd gen, mostly 70 big block elkys would be most popular. I'm a little different in that I like the single headlight 71/72 models better than the dual headlight 68-70 models. As for horsepower, any 3rd gen can have any big block so that's not such a big deal from one year to another.

HMMMMM, a Z16 elky, oooohweeee!!!

Maybe the legendary #201 Z16 was an elky, not a convertable!!!! :cool:

Bowtie
04-18-2006, 08:44 PM
Since I likely won't get the first 100 59's off the line, guess I'd like the 69 454 SS RS. You remember, the white and orange one with cowl induction? :-)

Hey, if Mrapii can dream, so can I!

Take care.

dcarr
04-30-2006, 01:12 AM
what El Camino would be your favorite if Chevrolet had built it? My choice is a Z16 version of the 1965 El Camino.

1961 Impala El Camino. I never really liked the lines on the '59-'60 Impala, but I really like the '61 Impala.

Overall, though, my favorites are definitely 3rd generation 1968-1972.

Lady Camino
05-01-2006, 12:04 AM
Did you mean most popular when they where new or today?

from what I've seen at car shows and cruises, 5th gens seem to be on the rise as far as being sought after, mostly for customizing. Alot of people still can't resist the alure 0f the '60's and early '70's models though. I'd like to see more 4th gens to add some variety, I had one 4th gen owner tell me the're not popular to restore/customize because they don't make repro parts for 'em and old parts are hard to find in good shape :-?

as far as when they where new, the last of 'em where made in '87 when I was in the 3rd grade, so I wouldn't know :-?

the '68-'69 and '78-79's are my favorites though :-)