Eric Pardo tells his story best: “I’ve loved Camaros all my life, and my first was a ’77 Type LT. I got it used in 1992 and spent a lot of time and money on it over the years. In 2007, I finally sold the car due to not being able to keep up on the maintenance. It was a pretty sad day to see my car being taken away since I had a lot of great memories of it with my family. I remember working on it with my son and daughter, especially the time my daughter got so excited to hear the roar of the engine at a car show.”
The car may have been gone, but Eric’s love of Camaros was still burning. In 2009, he got a call from a local Chevy dealer. As Eric told us, “he knew my story and called to ask if I was still interested in the Camaro. I had looked at a 35th Anniversary edition model a while ago, but things just didn’t work out. I wasn’t really thinking about it, but I had heard about the comeback of the Camaro so I decided to go into the dealership to talk. After my visit and doing some checking online, I was hooked. This time, things were all in alignment. I had just come into some extra cash and was in the process of selling a vehicle that was nothing but trouble.”
Eric liked all of the colors offered, so picking one was a challenge, but the powertrain options really left his head spinning. “I wasn’t sure about the V-6 until I saw the performance numbers of 304 hp and 273 lb-ft of torque,” said Eric. “Wow! My ’77 had 170 hp and 270 lb-ft, so this was a huge jump. Yeah, the new V-8 has over 400 hp, but I wasn’t planning on racing.”
Since then Eric has been enjoying the new RS and has even hit a few car shows. The biggest mods so far have been the Sinister Ram-Air hood and matching spoiler, but he’s also done a Roto-Fab cold-air kit and worked over the exterior lighting. But most importantly, he’s back in a Camaro.
For most of us our first car was something way less than cool, but not so for New Jersey’s Matt Plotkin. You see, at the tender age of 18, Matt managed to work his butt off to afford a ’94 Z28. Mark stated, “It’s my first car and I worked a long time to be able to buy it!” The Patriot Red Metallic ride was bone stock when Matt picked it up and he’s been steadily building it up. The LT1 got a set of Pacesetter long-tubes, a better exhaust, and a tune. On motor he’s ran 12.92 at 106.5 mph. There’s a Nitrous Outlet LT1 plate kit sitting on the bench that will surely drop those e.t.’s even further.
Backing up the LT1 is a Stage II Tremec T56 with an MGW shifter along with a beefier clutch, and the diff was upgraded to 3.73 gears for snappier launches. To help drop the 60-foot times, he bolted on some Eibach Drag Launch springs, Competition Engineering three-way adjustable drag shocks, UMI adjustable torque arm, UMI LCAs with relocation brackets, and UMI’s Panhard rod. After all, a good launch is one key element to a low e.t. For looks, he tossed on some black ZR1 wheels and a late fourth-gen SS spoiler. It all gels for one cool “first car” any of us would be happy to own.