There are two types of people in this world. Those who gaze at their senior yearbook photo, counting their lucky stars that change is constant. Others look back into a simpler time, wondering where it all fell apart. That fact was driven home by a recent press release sent to us by the Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) welcoming Chevy’s Class of 1998 into the Fraternal Order of Antique Autos.
The AACA defines an “antique” as any 25-year-old (or older) self-propelled vehicle intended for passenger use. Any vehicle that meets these standards enjoys the AACA’s antique automobile status and is welcome on AACA show fields across America and around the world. We got to thinking about some of the cars manufactured by Chevrolet in 1998 and decided to look back into the Chevy yearbook for that year and see how they are doing today. Here are a few of the notable examples from Chevy’s class of 1998.
1998 Chevrolet Camaro
Of course, there was a blend of makes and models listed in the AACA’s press release, but we think the Jock of the bunch was the 1998 Chevrolet Camaro. This year of Chevy’s fourth-generation pony car was worthy of noting. It hit the road running in 1998 with the LS1 engine introduced the previous year in the Camaro’s bigger brother, Corvette. As noted in the press release, an equally-sinister Pontiac Firebird was also offered.
You could say that the 1998 Camaro has aged gracefully and there are many examples among us that took the solid, LS-based platform and created something truly impressive as it matured. We would say the Chevy Camaro is the best example of Chevy’s Class of 1998 for living up to the superlative, “Most likely to be enjoyed”.
1998 Chevrolet Cavalier
There was no denying the family resemblance between Chevy’s 1998 Cavalier with its more muscular sibling, Camaro. Fraternal might be the best way to connect the dots between the two vehicles as they were both very different in character and purpose.
Along the way though, you could see the Cav’ and Camaro spent a little time at the gym together and some pretty impressive bodies were built from Chevy’s little econobox.
1998 Chevrolet Monte Carlo
This front-wheel variant of Chevy’s “personal luxury car” could likely be the Al Bundy of the bunch, constantly referring back to that game-winning touchdown many years ago. By the time the 1998 Chevrolet Monte Carlo came on the scene, those torquey big-blocks were long gone and hadn’t a prayer of fitting in the current front-wheel-driven platform.
But a dude named Dale tweaked his Monte and won the Daytona 500 for the first time this year. In celebration of Earnhardt’s first win at the Big Oval’s 500-miler, Chevrolet issued 25 Dale Earnhardt Edition, 1998 Monte Carlos. With only 200 horsepower V6s, and auto transmissions, they were a far cry from the performance of the car that carried the #3 to victory, but at least they had the colors and the striping.
1998 Chevy Astro Van
Consider the Chevrolet Astro Van as the mullet-wearing member of the class of 1998. With either a four-cylinder or a 200-horsepower V6 under that stubby hood, the Astro Van was clearly a clean-cut contributor to automotive society. But, with “more room than a minivan” and enough seating for up to eight people out back, the Astro was clearly the party van for 1998.
You can tell from this video that the Astro Van hasn’t changed its ways over the decades, but it has pumped up the ponies quite a bit from when it first graduated.
1998 Chevrolet S-10
Chevy’s little “quarter-ton pickup” was truly a product of international influence. Originally built in response to the small, utilitarian vehicles being imported stateside, it was the first compact pickup produced domestically by the Big Three automakers.
The little hauler worked hard after 1998 and there are both buff and battered examples of the little truck still with us today. A case in point is this S-10 that has undergone extensive plastic surgery to the extent it’s hard to tell what it really started out as. Of course, this little gem was located on Craigslist.
1998 Chevrolet Full-Size Truck
Chevrolet’s full-size offering for 1998 was a work truck if there ever was one. It became known for reliability and not being afraid to get its hands dirty. Hard work meant that Chevy trucks have put in some long, hard days, but now they can relax a bit and be pampered by their current owners.
Many folks don’t consider these “Old Body Style” (OBS) trucks as retired, but more like enjoying the fruits of their previous labors. A perfect example is this super-red, step-side truck that features wheels, custom bodywork, and a drop in stature to get that super-cool cruiser style. No doubt the years of hauling rocks and such are long gone for many Chevy trucks of the OBS generation as they transition into retirement life full of car shows and cruising.
Welcome To Antique Status Class Of 1998!
Just like any class reunion, you never know how many members of Chevy’s Class of 1998 will take the AACA’s offer and attend one of the club’s events, but they could if they wanted. For more information on the AACA or what events they offer, check out the AACA’s website. We hope you enjoyed our “Where Are They Now?” look at some of the cars (and trucks) that highlighted Chevy’s lineup in 1998. Just like every class that has gone on before, the aging process is what brought them to this place in time. And sometimes, it can be fun, or somewhat cringe-worthy to look back and see how far they’ve come.