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Custom 1967 Camaro That Was Brought Back from the Dead

Lazarus Rising: Eric Torquist rescued this ’67 Camaro from the depths of project car hell, and created a Tangerine-hued cruising dream

Patrick Hill Jul 14, 2016 0 Comment(s)
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If you live anywhere near Wichita, Kansas, you might have spied Eric Torquist’s ’67 Camaro zipping past you, its Tangerine Dream hue glistening in the bright Kansas sunshine. And with the endless sightline of the Plains, you’ll see it coming and going for a seeming eternity. Eric doesn’t believe in trailering this Camaro to its destinations. It was built for show, go, and driving enjoyment.

1967 Chevrolet Camaro Passenger Side 2/23
1967 Chevrolet Camaro Side View 3/23

You wouldn’t guess that this car started out as a partially disassembled hulk. The previous owner had started to restore the ’67 and return it to its former glory, but those plans got derailed. Being a well-known member of the Kansas classic car community, one of Eric’s many friends found out the car was for sale and Eric hightailed it to the shop where the Camaro was being stored.

You wouldn’t guess that this car started out as a partially disassembled hulk. The previous owner had started to restore the ’67 and return it to its former glory, but those plans got derailed. Being a well-known member of the Kansas classic car community, one of Eric’s many friends found out the car was for sale and Eric hightailed it to the shop where the Camaro was being stored.

1967 Chevrolet Camaro Engine View 4/23
1967 Chevrolet Camaro Wheel 5/23

Once the car was back at Eric’s shop, a three-and-a-half-year meticulous process began that transformed the incomplete mess into a jaw-dropping first-gen jewel. It was a straightforward build, with few changes along the way. One was on the exhaust. At first glance, you’d think this car has an early exit exhaust just behind the front wheel. These exits are where the sweetest sounds come out of this Camaro. Eric decided this car needed some exhaust cutouts. While cruising and normal driving, the spent exhaust gasses travel through a full exhaust system and out the back of the car. But when it’s time to make the walls rattle and ladies swoon, the switch is flipped on those cutouts, and the sweet smell of spent hydrocarbons and the ear-ringing sound of high compression come blasting forth like an enraged British television host looking for a fresh steak. The car’s solitary gray stripe was meant to stop at the decklid like the factory Z/28 stripes did, but it was decided to carry it all the way down the rear valance. The Camaro rolls and very wide rubber; 275/35/18 front and 335/30/18 massive rears. The hoops spin around a Baer 13-inch disc brake kit.

1967 Chevrolet Camaro Interior 6/23
1967 Chevrolet Camaro Back Seat 7/23

The interior is a modern office of Pro Touring comfort, swathed in tan leather and custom built by the masters at Recovery Room. The gauges keeping tabs on the monster Mouse under the hood are Auto Meter Pro Comps, and tunes for cruising are supplied by a Kenwood audio system. To beat the summer heat and warm things up in the winter there’s also a full Vintage Air system.

The car was finished in January 2015, and since then Eric has enjoyed driving it to local cruises, car shows, and events. Rarely does the ’67 leave the home range of the Kansas plains, and it’s become well known to everyone. After some miles behind the wheel, about the only thing Eric has considered changing is the car’s TREMEC TKO five-speed, to a more cruising friendly automatic. But those doubts are quickly extinguished when it comes time to row the gears on the manual box and enjoy the pleasure of jamming gears with that Inglese-injected 427 revving toward the moon.

This ’67 Camaro almost joined the ranks of the dead, downtrodden, languishing failed projects that litter America’s garages, shops, and backyards like tombstones for lost dreams and failed ideas. But thanks to the imagination and passion of Eric Torquist, this 50-year-old classic Chevy saw the glory of resurrection and the open highways of cruising enjoyment.

1967 Chevrolet Camaro Taillights 8/23
1967 Chevrolet Camaro Taillights 9/23
1967 Chevrolet Camaro Rear Side View 10/23
1967 Chevrolet Camaro Taillights 11/23

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