Many times, the history of a Camaro is as interesting as the actual car. This is particularly true in the case of Tom Tomlinson's 1973 Chevy Camaro LT/RS, especially to us magazine guys. As Tom told us, "I bought my Camaro in 2012 from a guy named Bob in California who was selling off his collection of cars, including this '73, which he had owned since 1993. Prior to Bob, Phil Schilling, who was managing editor of Cycle magazine, owned the Camaro. Phil wrote a fascinating article that ran in Classic Auto Restorer in April 1992 about his 20 years of owning the '73 since he bought it new. According to Bob, this was the actual car that Car & Driver tested and reported on when the new '73 models were introduced." The Luxury Touring (LT) Camaro was introduced in 1973 because GM was loosing sales of the Z28 in the hot and humid states since it didn't come with A/C. The LT model was pretty much a Z28 with A/C and a fancier (luxurious?) interior. The emissions-hobbled 350 was a slug and was backed by a lackluster cast-iron Saginaw four-speed. The Camaro had a nice repaint of its original Code 64 Silver paint, so the plan was to rebuild just the mechanical parts of the LT.
Currently, the suspension is getting a makeover with everything from the Detroit Speed (DSE) arsenal, including their hydroformed subframe and QUADRALink rear suspension. JRI double-adjustable shocks dampen the bumps and subframe connectors keep everything in place. Tom even hit up Mark Stielow for his billet axle ends that let him mate C6 ZR1 hubs to the rear axletubes. To motivate the Camaro, the drivetrain consists of a Thomson Automotive LS442 (bored and stroked LS7), which makes 706 hp at the crank. Since Tom is the President of Holley Performance Products, the LS is topped off with a hand-massaged Holley EFI NASCAR throttle body. Controlling the LS will be left to the Holley Terminator EFI ECU, and the pulley setup consists of their new bracket system. A Tremec T56 Magnum will let Tom row the gears while Baer six-piston binders stuffed inside Forgeline GA3 wheels will help the Camaro bleed off speed in a heartbeat. The interior will stay GM "Luxury" stock with the exception of a hidden rollbar and Vintage Air A/C system. Tom's endgame for the car is simple, "I intend to drive it like I stole it at Pro Touring events around the country, including the Holley LS Fest, American Street Car Series and Goodguys events, the Hot Rod Power Tour, and hopefully the Optima Ultimate Street Car Invitational.