The 1969 Camaro RS SS Z11 Indy Pace Car Convertible is legendary because of a combination of sexy styling and pavement-pounding big block power. Not only did Chevrolet give it the most outrageous paint job of the era — Dover white with Hugger orange Z/28 stripes — but it also had an orange Houndstooth interior. Everything about it was eye catching. It was GM’s purpose to make a statement to the world. And the Z11 Indy Pace Car edition Camaro surely did.
This stunning 1969 Camaro RS SS Z11 Indy Pace Car Convertible was built in the Norwood, Ohio plant during the first week of May 1969, one of the last of the production run. It is now for sale at Masterpiece Vintage Cars of Whiteland, Indiana They tell us it is a big block 396 L78 375 horsepower version with a 4-speed. (Click this link to review its history and see dozens of photos.) That is what makes it so special.
Complete with the official Indy 500 identification decals, it comes wearing the classic factory Code 50 Dover White and trim Code 720 Orange Houndstooth Interior. Its wide stance and muscular haunches give it an iconic look that has made the 1969 Camaro one of the most desirable collector cars today.
Masterpiece’s Pace Car is fitted with a Muncie M21 4-speed manual transmission that smoothly shifts through the gears. The Black/Woodgrain panel dash frames the 120 mph Speedometer and AM/FM Radio. This Camaro also has Power Steering, Power Brakes, Rear-deck/body contoured Spoiler and Dual Chrome Mirrors. This Camaro presents extremely well inside, outside and underneath. Without a doubt, this 1969 Camaro RS SS Z11 Indy Pace Car Convertible is a muscle car in its purest and most attractive form.
Click the video window below to watch a Masterpiece video on the 1969 Camaro RS SS Z11 Indy Pace Car:
The Z11 option was announced in the February 4, 1969 Chevrolet Product Bulletin. Chevrolet also stated that “…we plan to build replicas of the Pace Car to be sent to nearly all of the 6400 Chevrolet dealers across the country.” They built 3,675 Z11 Indy Pace Cars, including the Camaros that were provided as courtesy and track vehicles at the race, which they call Festival Cars.
The Z11 option was listed on the window sticker as “Indy 500 Pace Car Accents”. Door decals were included and were shipped in the trunk. The buyer could have them installed by the dealer. No SS stripes were used, but instead were replaced with orange Z/28 hood stripes and deck lid stripes. The Z11 package also added orange D96 fender stripes and had white rocker panels instead of being blacked out. The 396 cars had white sailpanels.
According to the Camaro Research Group* required options with the Z11 package included C05 white convertible top, D80 spoilers, YA1 deluxe seatbelts, ZJ7 Rally wheels, ZL2 special ducted hood, Z22 Rally Sport, Z27 Super Sport, and Z87 custom interior (orange houndstooth, code 720).
The 1969 Camaro RS SS Z11 Indy Pace Cars present at the 1969 Indianapolis 500 race that year included an additional 130 pace car replicas, 16 Impala station wagons, 18 pickups, two Suburbans, and one van. Forty-three pace car replicas, all SS350 automatics, were provided to the “500” Festival Committee for use in the Festival Parade and other events. Seven replicas were provided for use by Speedway officials, and five replicas were for USAC officials. The remaining 75 replicas were for the visiting press and VIP’s. It is believed that all the pace cars at the track were built in February, 1969, and all were built at the Norwood plant.
The two cars built to actually pace the race, the pace car and the backup car, were both ordered with the L89 aluminum head 375 hp 396 engines, automatic transmissions, power steering, sport-styled steering wheels, consoles, gauges, and AM radios. After assembly, they were shipped from the Norwood plant to the GM Tech Center. Both cars were then made race ready by Chevrolet Engineering and the Chevrolet Experimental Department. The engines and transmissions were disassembled, thoroughly inspected, and reassembled. The aluminum heads were replaced with L78 cast iron heads, a special 6-bolt COPO torque converter was installed, and service JL8 four-wheel disc brake axles with 3.31 gears were installed.
*Some of the information in this report was provided by the Camaro Research Group. Click here to see their webpage.