Reader’s Ride: Terry Thomas’ 1968 Camaro SS

One look at the smile on Terry Thomas’ face easily shows how much he enjoys driving his 1968 Camaro SS. You could also look at his gorgeous Island Teal blue beauty and surmise that he intends to do a lot of driving, lightly seasoned with a trophy trawl or two, when applicable.

Terry purchased the car in Seattle, Washington in 2021, and quickly hauled it down to his home in Louisiana. Before that, the car spent the first 37 years of its life in the San Diego, California area, which surely helped to keep the 1968 Camaro’s body and Medium Blue interior in perfect shape.

Upgrading A 1968 Camaro SS

The thrill of driving only comes from, well – driving! Once Terry had possession of the pony car, he began addressing certain areas to better suit the car to his intention of enjoying it worry-free. He installed a Champion, big-block radiator, along with a factory fan shroud and heavy-duty cooling fan, which was originally fitted to Camaros with the big-block 396 engine options. He also installed a Stewart Components, high-flow water pump to make sure the cooling fluid kept moving at both high and low revs. The electrical side of this 1968 Camaro SS has been upgraded with a high-torque starter and a Tuff Stuff Performance, 140-amp alternator to make sure the engine spins over faithfully whenever Terry turns the key.

1968 Chevrolet Camaro SS

In 1968, the only way you could get a Camaro with a 350 was to order it as a Super Sport. All 1968 Camaro SSs came from the factory with either a 295 horsepower, 350 cubic-inch (L48) small-block, or a 396 cubic-inch big-block engine putting out either 325 (L35) or 375 (L78) horsepower. While Terry’s Camaro is a small-block variant SS, the engine under its hood has a few more ponies than it was originally shipped from the factory.

1968 Camaro SS 350 engine

Terry’s ’68 Camaro SS came with a small-block 350 engine from the factory, but now it features several upgrades that make it much more fun for Terry to drive.

Terry’s Camaro features a 350 cubic-inch engine with four-bolt main caps. There is a COMP cams bump stick and the current engine compression ratio resides right around 10.5:1, a good reason for the high-torque starter. Sitting atop the block are a pair of aluminum Edelbrock performer RPM 65cc heads (2.02/1.60 valves), aluminum air-gap, dual-plenum intake, and a Holley 600cfm carb.

Slithering down the sides of the small-block V8 are a pair of stainless headers which force the spent fumes to the rear of the vehicle through a Flowmaster dual exhaust system. Right behind that powerhouse is a Boss Hog 2200 RPM stall converter and a TH350 transmission that has been beefed up with a shift kit. A 10-bolt rearend currently diverts the torque to each of those white letter tires wrapped around the 15-inch Rally rims.

Inside the cabin, Terry did a bit of restoring, as well as a few upgrades. He used the proper shade of Original Equipment Reproduction interior paint to freshen up the Medium Blue dash and trim areas, where needed. He also added Auto Custom Carpet flooring for that factory-fresh appearance. Terry and his wife are kept cool whenever driving the ’68 Camaro SS in the sweltering Bayou heat and humidity by a Vintage Air air-conditioning system. There is also a set of Morris three-point seat belts and a Retro Manufacturing RetroSound radio added to the Camaro’s inside area.

Each of the modifications Terry has made to his 1968 Camaro SS has contributed greatly to the enjoyment he gets with each twist of the key. Not that we would find that hard to believe, but a quick look at the smile on Terry’s fun meter will show that this first-generation Camaro is not only highly desirable, but it’s a blast to drive as well! And, that’s exactly how Terry planned it from the beginning of his stewardship of this 1968 Camaro SS.

Let’s See Your Chevy!

We love to see and share other hardcore enthusiast’s rides, whether in the build process, finished, or if you’re simply enjoying them in their current state. We only need a few photos and some information about you and your Chevy. That said, the more information and images you submit, the more we can show (and talk about) your car to the rest of our readers.

We look forward to seeing what you are doing to keep the Chevy Hardcore lifestyle alive. If you want to see more cars built and owned by our readers, send us a few pictures of your car showing the engine, interior, and exterior, along with all the pertinent information, so we can include it in our Reader’s Ride section. And don’t forget, if we use your car in our Reader’s Ride section this year, we’ll send you a FREE Chevy Hardcore T-shirt! You can send your submissions to us at

About the author

Andy Bolig

Andy has been intrigued by mechanical things all of his life and enjoys tinkering with cars of all makes and ages. Finding value in style points, he can appreciate cars of all power and performance levels. Andy is an avid railfan and gets his “high” by flying radio-controlled model airplanes when time permits. He keeps his feet firmly grounded by working on his two street rods and his supercharged C4 Corvette. Whether planes, trains, motorcycles, or automobiles, Andy has immersed himself in a world driven by internal combustion.
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