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El Camino 1964 to 1967—The Second Generation

The second-generation El Camino didn’t reach showroom floors until 1964, and the new model shared the Chevelle platform. Chevy chopped a two-door Chevelle at the B- pillars, which yielded the El Camino, a plain Jane clone of the Chevelle, but it displayed the badging of both vehicles. The available power options of the utility designated El Camino in ’64 were limited to a 194-cubic-inch and a 230-cubic-inch six with a 283-cubic-inch V8 that produced 195 horsepower mounted with a two-barrel as the standard offering. The 283 was upgradable to a four-barrel version producing 220 hp, and this included dual exhaust pipes. The largest engine in a new El Camino is the 327-cubic-inch small-block V8, which produced 250 hp with the two-barrel version or the modified 327 with tighter pistons in the firing chambers that produced the higher compression ratio of 10.5:1 and, mounted with the larger four-barrel, got 300 hp (220 kW). Of course, the dual exhaust pipes were a part of the package.

Chevrolet El Camino 1964 jpg

© Mybaitshop | Dreamstime.com 1964 Chevy El Camino

The El Camino looked good in 1965 and was still on the Chevelle platform, but the power options were more plentiful as well as larger; this was more attractive to many consumers. It had all the same power train options as the previous year, but the horsepower ratings had a boost on the V8 engines with a power 327-cubic-inch now putting out 350 hp (261 kW).

El Camino models in 1966 could have a new 396-cubic-inch (6.5L) V8 and, depending on the accessories added, put out between 325 hp and 375 hp (280kW) with the big one turning in a time of low 15s in the quarter, achieving a top speed of 90 mph plus. In ’66, the choices were the Spartan utility version or  the optional upscale custom model with deep pile carpet, swivel bucket seats, and a console available with an added choice of a tachometer to keep track of your rpm if you liked. The complete Chevelle lineup had a revised dash with the speedometer needle now using a sweep action to track your mph.

Chevrolet El Camino 1966 front

© Mybaitshop | Dreamstime.com 1966 Chevy El Camino front view

For 1967, the El Camino got a new grille, front bumper, and an exterior trim revision. The adjustable air shocks were still a very practical standard feature to have the ability to adjust them for heavier loads in the box. The car now had a collapsible steering column as standard equipment and the option of choosing the front disk brakes.

Chevrolet El Camino 1966

© Mybaitshop | Dreamstime.com 1966 Chevy El Camino

Power train options expanded in ’67 with an SS396 model in the showrooms, and, equipped with the 396-cubic-inch L35 series, the V8 produced 325hp in the base version. Any El Camino model that year could come with a large variety of engine and transmission combinations. The transmission offerings were the Turbo Hydramatic (TH400) three-speed, the two-speed Powerglide, and two versions of a four-speed standard, either the wide ratio M20 for higher speed or the close ratio M21 for quicker pickup, with the column-mounted, three-speed standard remaining as the base transmission.


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