Welcome to Down On The Street, where we admire old vehicles found parked on the streets of the Island That Rust Forgot: Alameda, California. Can you believe, with all the first-generation Camaros built, that we're on the 327th Alameda DOTS car and we're seeing our very first one? Are they just too valuable to be allowed on the street? Or did they all go out in blazes of hoonic glory back in the day? If either is true, why do we see so many early Mustangs still on the street? Note: Yes, I was off by a year on this one, which is what sometimes happens with cars I assume I know well enough to allow me to skip the reference books. Apologies to all you first-gen Camaro fans outraged by my mistake.
I found this car parked at a meter in front of Jim's Coffee House downtown. Realizing I didn't have time to run home and get my good camera, I decided to make do with the camera in my cellphone.
The General made 230,799 Camaros for the '69 model year, compared to Ford's 299,824 Mustangs that year. A V8-equipped Camaro hardtop went for $2,727, versus $2,723 for a V8 Mustang hardtop. With both cars offering roughly similar performance (i.e., terrible handling and braking, decent acceleration), the choice for car buyers probably came down to style and/or brand preference.
This one is a bit rough, but it's purple! Good to see a Camaro that's not afraid to venture away from car shows and cruise nights.