September 2012 Readers' Rides

Unintended Consequences

Camp 1209 05 Z September 2012 Readers Rides 2/5

In 2008, Matt Wasserman was minding his own business and checking out cars in the latest Autotrader magazine when it happened. He spied an ’02 Sunset Orange SS Camaro. Now, Matt had zero intentions of buying a new car, but the stunning color, along with some unusually low odometer numbers, were enough to entice him into visiting the dealer where the car was listed. “It was at a Dodge dealership, so I checked out the lot and couldn’t find the Camaro,” remembers Matt. “I just figured they sold it, but I was wrong. I walked inside and smack in the middle of the showroom was this beautiful Camaro with only 15k miles on it! It was so clean you could eat off the motor. I instantly fell in love with it, and to make a long story short, I left a deposit the same day and picked it up the next.” The SS had all the SLP options (car number 8,670) and Matt has installed quite a few “must haves,” including American Racing long-tubes, a GMMG catback exhaust, lowering springs, B&M tranny cooler, drilled/slotted rotors with Hawk pads, and some stunning split-five-spoke wheels. The car is a weekend warrior, and as such, the mileage is still a very low 24,000 miles.

It’s great to know Matt still loves the car that he never even intended to buy.

Speed Trap

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As a retired LAPD officer, Tony Foti loves all things black and white, especially his race cars. His previous ride was a ’92 Pro Mod that ran over 170 mph, but this time he decided to kick it old school by working over a first-gen. As Tony described the car, “It’s a ’68 SS Camaro I got from a fellow racer in Maryland named Charlie Harrison. The Camaro has a year-correct 30-over 427 on alcohol with Brodix heads and Arias 15:1 pistons. The Rat motor was built by Jim Shewbert Racing Engines and has an 1,150 Dominator, T&D shaft rocker setup with an all-Isky valvetrain. The rear is a Dana 60 series with 4.88s, Alston ladder bar setup, Strange axles, Cragar wheels, and a complete Wilwood brake system. As always, the drivetrain is an A-1 Automatic two-speed with one of Marv Ripes’ trick converters. The car is all glass except the quarters and roof, which have been lightened and reinforced. The entire safety system is by Deist Safety, right down to the parachute.”

With the support of Tony’s wife, Bernadette, LAPD’s Racing Team, Classic Industries, and Mark Vogt, Tony has been able to get the dragstrip brawler ready for the track in record time. On one of the early shakedown passes, the Camaro clocked an 8.89 at 154 mph, which was better than Tony expected. Still not quick enough though, so he plans on tweaking and tuning the Camaro to be even quicker.

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