What is the Chevrolet Camaro Berlinetta?

Berlinetta? What? Does this guy mean the z28? IROC? No, you read that right, the Berlinetta. I had recently posted a Deal Find for one of these I stumbled upon in Canada and have since been receiving feedback on what the heck a Berlinetta is.

Source: General Motors

For the third generation of the Chevrolet Camaro, GM offered the “Berlinetta” edition from 1982-1986. It was an attempt from GM and Chevrolet to expand the Camaro brand to other buyers, specifically more upscale clientele and women. I’m not kidding, they really wanted to target females with this thing.

In order to do this, Chevrolet made sure to package a special interior trim, with lots of power equipment, a fancy stereo and the legendary “starship” dashboard. This dashboard was mostly digital, with a couple things that for the 80s just couldn’t be digitalized. It came with control pods on both sides for things like turn signals and headlight options. The stereo was higher end for the 80s as well, more power with fancy controls. The control panel could also swivel so you could set it up for easier access. The interior was better insulated for noise too which made for a more comfortable drive.

Source: General Motors

On the outside, the Camaro Berlinetta also featured some upgrades over the other Camaros. There were special Berlinetta graphics that designated it as such and a two tone bumper treatment to identify a Berlinetta from a mile away. It came with different alloys that were gold accent (probably to push the “luxury” look), than the z28 and IROC models as well. The taillights were also treated to a gold and black horizontal divider bar.

For performance, the 2.8LC1 V6 was standard on the Camaro Berlinetta, producing an underwhelming (even for the 80s) 102 horsepower and 145 lb-ft of torque. However, buyers had the option to upgrade to the 5.0 LG4 V8, also known as the 305 Chevy small block which produced 150 horsepower and 240lb-ft of torque. The suspension was upgraded to softer springs to make the ride more comfortable rather than spirited.

Unfortunately, for Chevrolet and the Camaro Berlinetta, the car just didn’t sell as well as the IROC or z28 and failed to attract the market they were after. It is estimated only 27,295 out of 173,000 Camaros sold from 1982-1986 were Camaro Berlinettas.

About Nick

Nick resides on the West Coast and lives for cars. He has a unique passion for old American FWD V-8 vehicles and his current daily is a 2004 Buick Century. He does also have a 2003 Porsche 996 Turbo, and a 2018 Kawasaki ZX-10R.

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