Restoring cop cars to their former glory isn’t a common hobby, but as today’s Nice Price or No Dice Camaro demonstrates, the results can be pretty cool for those who make the attempt. Let’s see what this old-school interceptor might bring in today’s dollars.
According to Forbes, Maserati holds the ignominious honor of having the highest depreciation over its first five years of ownership of any marque. That’s an average of 66.4 percent over those first five years, with the Quattroporte dropping a wallet-sucking 72.2 percent after the new has worn off.
It’s a lucky thing, then, that the 1986 Maserati Biturbo Zagato Spyder we looked at yesterday is so old. Its age likely ensures that its downward spiral has reached some sort of plateau. That theoretical mesa was an asking price of $8,950, and for a car with such pedigree — and such a long name — that should have been intriguing at the least. Of course, this was a Maserati, a marque that seems to spend its existence sad-tromboning its owners at every opportunity. That factor played into the comments and the 68 percent No Dice vote the car suffered.
Speaking of suffering, have you ever been out on the highway, turnpike or other multilane road of your choice and suffered a breakdown or minor accident? In such cases, seeing a Highway Patrol or State Trooper car pull up to help can be a major relief.
With their traditional black-and-white paint scheme and familiar state seal badge on the door, the California Highway Patrol car is a recognized symbol of such highway help, even well outside of the Golden State.
California’s Highway Patrol was created back in 1929 through an act of the state legislature. Since then, the CHP’s jurisdiction has grown to cover more than 100,000 miles of interstate, state highways and county roads. The current crop of CHP cars includes the Ford Explorer, Chevy Tahoe and Dodge Charger. Some of those get painted a monochrome white and lack push-bars and external lights. These are denoted as SMPVs or Specially Marked Patrol Vehicles and are used in high-infraction areas. Most other CHP cars are painted in the more traditional black and white motif and carry the state seal and traditional HIGHWAY PATROL signage on the door.
At one time, the CHP used pony cars as interceptor vehicles. The force employed both Mustangs and Camaros. The result was a very cool look, with the traditional color scheme and badging applied to the very nontraditional cars.
This 2002 Chevy Camaro is said to be a retired CHP car and to have been restored to its highway cruiser days. The ad claims the car to be a B4C package car and says that means it has all kinds of special law enforcement-only juju underneath. That’s only sort of accurate. On the fourth-generation Camaro, the B4C package was basically just a Z-28 with the badging omitted and no option of a T-top roof. You can see the full specs in this promotional piece.
Being a Z-28 is not such a bad thing, and with just 119,000 miles under its tires this B4C Camaro obviously didn’t do much in the way of front-line duty.
The engine here is a 310 horsepower LS1 V8, and that’s backed up by a 4LE60 four-speed automatic and 3.23 rear end with a limited-slip differential. The ad says the engine hasn’t been out of the car, but the transmission has, having undergone a rebuild a few miles back.
The car has been repainted in the traditional black and white color scheme and carries the CHP name and star on each door. A light bar rides the roof, completing the illusion. The B4C Camaros didn’t come with push-bars.
The medium gray interior (color code 92B, according to the brochure) looks to be in excellent shape. You won’t find any place to mount a Motorola in here, nor is it immediately evident how you switch on the light bar. Maybe the latter is just for show?
The title is clean and the engine is said to carry a professional tune. The asking price is $20,900, and it’s now time to decide if this homage Highway Patrol car is worth that kind of cash. What do you think, could this Camaro command that much? Or, is that a price that will keep it off the highway?
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