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Double Take: 2002 Corvette Identifies As A 1969 Camaro

Meet CamVette, a beautiful build that takes the Restomod concept to a whole new level, and she's for sale!

Well over a decade ago, Jim I. from Reedley, California, had a vision to combine the best of both worlds—classic old-school Chevy muscle with modern Corvette underpinnings. This Restomod recipe is not necessarily new, but Jim’s approach certainly was. As he stated when the project started to blossom in his mind, “The build concept was a plan which I thought might significantly reduce labor time and cost by body working a ’69 Camaro over a complete, running, operating 2002 Corvette chassis.

While I appreciate his enthusiastic approach to budgetary efficiency, after looking at some of the build logs and receipts, I believe Jim may be wondering if a traditional approach would have been easier on his pocketbook. After all, one of the documents in his detailed Bring a Trailer listing uses the wording “first business model to be sold,” which seems to indicate this build was intended as a flip. Nevertheless, the first piece of this unique Restomod puzzle came to fruition when Jim acquired a “parts Camaro” in late 2013. Then, shortly after, Jim found a salvaged 2002 Corvette at a Copart auction, and the rest, as they say, was history.

First, meet the end result, named CamVette. Then, we’ll dive into some of the more interesting aspects of this build.

Bring a Trailer Snapshot:

  • Current Bid: $30,333
  • Auction Ends: April 5, 2024
  • Auction Views: 7,992
  • Auction Watchers: 1,130
  • Link to listing here

I calculated the labor hours from the first section of Jim’s detailed build book, and they totaled a whopping 346 hours. And this was before a second builder took over!

There are many more receipts close to this.

Jim explains the salvage Corvette:

When I bought the Corvette at auction, I selected this particular one to buy because the damage was limited to the rear body panels and wiring caused by a rear end collision. There was no frame or running gear damage which made this chassis perfect for our use as a complete running and operating chassis. After removal of the rest of the body panels, we could start and drive the chassis around.”

CamVette has the proper number of pedals.

How Jim made it work:

“The Camaro bodywork was shortened and fabricated to accommodate the C5 chassis with revisions to the cowl, fenders, quarter panels, and rear decklid. Features include an integrated rear spoiler, Ringbrothers side mirror, and side-exit exhaust outlets, and the car has been finished in the House of Kolor shade of Brandywine. In preparation for the sale, the windshield wiper motor was fabricated to fit the shortened cowl, the wipers were installed, and wiring repairs were made to the keyless entry system.”

The interior color has raised some concerns from the BaT community, but Jim swears it’s more brown than orange.

The LS1 is tucked nicely under that Camaro body.

Yep, looks like a C5 underneath, except for that Camaro gas tank.

A few pictures from the build (I wish Jim had provided more!).

So, CorvSport readers, what do you think of this creation? What do you think it will take to own her? If you want to keep up to date with all the fresh Corvette news and maintain a pulse on the lifestyle and culture of this exciting, iconic brand, CorvSport has the fastest-growing Corvette community on our Facebook page, with over 173,000 followers (54,000 since January 2023!). Come join other hardcore enthusiasts and say hello, Douglas B.