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Saturday, April 25, 2015

Here’s Proof that the El Camino Never Went Away

BOLD RIDE

Copyright © 2015 Bold Ride LLC.

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Chevrolet may have closed the books on its car-based pickup in 1987 when the El Camino went out of production, but in the hearts of its US fans, it appears its memory didn’t depart with it. 
This, by birth, is not an El Camino. Rather, it’s quite obviously a 2004 Chevrolet Monte Carlo with a large section scooped out of the boot. It goes by the nickname “El Camonte” and allegedly tells a very interesting tale about how GM pushed to put the El Camino back in production. Interested? The current owner is selling the American ute at no reserve.



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The “El Camonte” story begins back in 2004, according to the listing, when the new Monte Carlo was picked up at a dealership and promptly brought straight to a custom shop to receive its pickup truck transformation. The nip-tuck took 11 months from start to finish, to the tune of a $70,000 bill. When all was said and done, the car’s drivetrain was left completely stock with all modifications limited only to the car body, as hinted by the rear struts poking up in the bed.

Here’s where it gets interesting. According to the seller, General Motors representatives took detailed measurements and photos of this custom El Camino concept car, as at the time it was rumored that GM considered bringing the nameplate and body style back. Pontiac even made bold steps toward it with the release of its G8 sport truck concept. The validity of that story remains to be seen, but it does make for a great tale for US El Camino hopefuls.


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A bit of history. Chevrolet launched the El Camino in the US for the 1959 model year, two years after Ford debuted its similar Ranchero. But the car-based pickup was hardly a new idea.

 In Australia, Ford has been building the popular coupe utility vehicles (utes) since the 1930s. In fact, Ford and Holden still do. The El Camino returned in 1964 after a brief hiatus and soldiered on in the US until 1987.
This 2004 Monte Carlo El Camino mashup sold at the Barrett-Jackson auction in 2006 for $21,450 and is said to have remained with its current family ever since, showing just over 11,000 miles on the odometer.

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