The Top 10 Camaros issue of Camaro Performers magazine has become a huge hit on the magazine newsstand. You might say it's the must-have issue of the year for us Camaro guys, and rightfully so. But it's imperative to point out that we don't just go through all nine issues from 2009 and pick out the most expensive, fastest, or prettiest Camaros and slap them on the list. That's hardly the case. As a matter of fact, carefully wadding through over 40 feature cars and trying to justify why one Camaro makes the list and another does not, is no easy task. It's also 100 percent subjective. With that said, it's our parameters and our ball, so we get to choose.
Now, we're aware that at least half of the cars featured in Camaro Performers magazine deserve to be considered as a top 10 contender; and believe us when we say, "They were considered." Some discussions within the staff on choosing cars were civil, while some, on the other hand, were a bit heated. But that's how it works when science takes a back seat to good old-fashioned editorial subjectivity.
So if we're going to decide which cars make it onto our top 10, then there better be a good reason why one car makes it, and another of equal, or sometimes better build quality does not. Well, that's where the story behind the car comes into play. For example, just because a '69 Camaro carries a build price of over $100K doesn't automatically make the car worthy of the list. But a car that was built for a fraction of that can carry a whole lot of weight if it was homebuilt, or if the car has a history of being beat on at the track, and proudly wears a garnish of rock chips or cone rash.
Take Cody Lebo's '71. It sports a leaf-spring rear suspension and mostly stock underpinnings. The car has a wicked stance and killer paint, and for the most part, was a homebuilt project. A top 10 Camaro of 2009? You betcha! Now, by the same token, let's look at Kyle Tucker's '70. It has been armed with one of Detroit Speed's most elaborate suspensions in all of Camaroland, but the paint looks to be as old as the car itself. A top 10 Camaro? Hell yes! With the way Kyle beats on this second-gen, it's only fitting this car finds its way onto our Top 10 Camaros of the Year.
So after weeks of sifting through Camaros for this list, then changing our minds, and changing them once more, we've painstakingly come up with what we feel to be an honorable group of Camaros that make up the Top 10 Camaros of 2009. We're sure you'll agree that many of the cars we've chosen are deserving of a spot, while a number of you will have something to say about our picks, so don't hesitate to let us know how you feel. In fact, we welcome you to compile your own list just to see how in touch we are with you readers.
With that said, we hope you enjoy this ensemble of Camaro eye candy. Oh, and just like last year, we couldn't narrow it down to just 10, so our Top 10 list actually consists of 11. Blame it on the movie This is Spinal Tap and the famous quote from Nigel Tufnel. "These go to 11."
Here is a prime example of a homebuilt goodie that didn't break the bank, yet still oozes with plenty of style. The car has amazing paint and a vicious stance-one that most second-gen owners tend to miss by a mile. Needles to say, Cody nailed it. This is a prime example of a budget build that can stand up to most any Camaro at any given show. Cody runs a stout 387ci mill with Eagle-forged stroker kit that puts out about 456 hp at 6,300. A beefy turbo 400 sends off the twist to a 12-bolt rearend fitted with 3.73:1 gears and a limited-slip differential. Hotchkis handled the 2-inch drop springs up front, and Cody matched the rear drop with lowering blocks. He bolted up beefy sway bars, and a set of QA1 12-way adjustable shocks smooth the road. We can't wait to see the latest additions as they materialize on Cody's tidy second-gen.