The Chevrolet Camaro is one of our favorite cars. Starting at year one, they were an instant hit and gained a solid following. We love everything that separates the generations, but what about the little differences that separate the years within? We know people that can pick a ’68 Camaro from a ’67 Camaro faster than your average person can even tell it’s a Camaro. To do that, there has to be something that differentiates them, but what?
That’s where we want to help make it easy. The first and most obvious way to separate a 1967 Camaro from the rest of the herd is by the vent/wing window, something the ’68 and ’69 models lack. That small triangular piece of glass in front of the side door windows makes a huge difference.
But other than some body design cues, what telltale items differentiate the ’68 from the ’69 Camaro? While all three model years have different taillights, the ’69 Camaro differs significantly. The ’67 and ’68 Camaro both have two lights per bezel, but the ’69 has three. The quick way to know you are looking at a ’69 is to count the taillight lens dividers. To tell the ’67 from the ’68 Camaro, you just need to look at the bezel. The standard ’67 Camaro has one large lens with a tail and back up light (RS and SS models had a single red lens with the back up light mounted under the bumper), while the ’68 has a lens divider integrated into the bezel. We understand there are a lot of years, numbers, and descriptions being thrown around, so we’ve added a few pictures to show you what we mean.
There is also the matter of the side marker lights that were present on the ’68 and ’69 Camaro, but not the ’67. Side marker lights were not federally-mandated until 1968, and the ’68 Camaro has a larger rectangular-shaped side light, while the ’69 Camaro has a narrow rectangular-shaped side marker light. The 1968 is also unique, because it has a strip of chrome that runs along the top of the doors. Neither the ’67 nor the ’69 Camaro have any trim on the door tops.
Amongst the differences that can be seen with the naked eye, there are others that effect how the car works rather than how it looks. A small example of these nearly invisible differences is the mechanism that opens the headlight doors on RS-equipped cars. On the ‘67 Camaro, the doors are opened by electric motors, but on the ’68 and ’69, they are vacuum actuated. It’s not something that is going to significantly alter performance, but it’s a difference nonetheless.
These are only some of the differences in the first generation, and if we really wanted to try and point out all of them, it would take a lot more writing on our part and a lot more reading on yours. These are just some that come to mind when trying to decipher the differences between the three. Take some time to comment about the differences that we have left out, tell us the differences that are most important to you, or do both. We would love to hear from you.