In many enthusiasts’ minds, the name Yenko is synonymous with all things muscular and high-performance, and this 1969 Yenko Camaro is definitely the epitome of that. Don Yenko, a legend in the world of road racing and high-performance Chevys, built 198 Camaros in 1969 enlisting the power of a 425-horsepower L27 427 big-block engine. These 427 Camaros showed no mercy on the strip and on the street in their younger years, and now many of them have retired into high-performance collections. The 1969 Yenko Camaro you see here is hitting the block at the Russo and Steele Scottsdale auction, which begins Wednesday, January 15th.
The 1969 Yenko Camaros came from the factory with Chevy’s COPO 9561 in high-performance applications and 9737 Sports Car Conversion packages. Chevy’s incredibly brutal 427 cubic-inch 425-horsepower L72 came with heavy-duty suspension and cooling, a ZL2 Cowl Induction hood, power front disc brakes, 4.10:1 Positraction rear axle, 15x7 wheels wrapped in E70x15 tires, and a 140mph speedometer, Front and rear spoilers and a larger front sway bar were also added. Once the cars were delivered to Yenko, a Stewart-Warner tachometer, custom wheels, and Yenko graphics, stripes, and seats were added. The air-cleaner lid was also relabeled to show a more accurate power rating of 450 horsepower. The Yenko Camaros were made in six colors, with Daytona Yellow being arguably one of the more desirable.
This beautiful example retains its original factory-installed 427 paired with an unoriginal (but correct) Muncie M-21 four-speed manual transmission. It is estimated that only one-quarter of all remaining examples are still powered by their original engines, and even fewer are equipped with four-speeds. Though the Camaro is fully restored, it retains most of its original sheet metal and correct date-coded components. It is being sold due to space constraints at the California private collection in which it resides. The ownership history of the Camaro is well-documented. It has also been featured in many high-profile media ventures including 2005 coverage on the History Channel’s Automaniacs television show with then-owner Greg Joseph and pro-wrestler and car enthusiast Bill Goldberg, and was chosen as one of 23 cars to attend the “Muscle Cars at the Mansion” car show at the Playboy Mansion. Photographs of the Camaro by Ron Kimball have landed in several calendars.
Included with sale is a copy of the original Yenko Chevrolet Inventory Sheet, a 1991 COPO Connection report by Chevy muscle car expert Ed Cuneen, and inclusion within the Yenko Registry. To learn more or to bid on this fine example of Chevrolet muscle, visit www.russoandsteele.com.