When it comes to considering whether or not a car has any collectability, demand is usually a strong consideration. Take for instance the first-gen Camaro. There is no arguing the car has a huge following that makes it such a sought-after classic. That also means they cost a lot of money. But what about the last years of the second-gen Camaro? These cars are not considered a true muscle car by many, and the advent of smog restrictions and the bludgeoning of horsepower that occurred a few years earlier, only add to the car’s non-perceived collectability. Although these cars have typically not been on many people’s radar as collectibles, they have seen a recent surge in popularity over the last several years. Need an example? Just ask Holden Webster.
Holden, like many younger enthusiasts, was not around when the cars of the ’60s and ’70s were roaming the streets. His memories revolve around the cars that were coming out of Detroit beginning in the late ’70s and early ’80s. So, it would stand to reason that many of these younger enthusiasts have an interest in those cars. For many of us, mid-to-early ’70s muscle cars are what fill our memories. For the generation before us, it is the cars that are now built into street rods – It’s a vicious cycle.
Holden was more than happy to tell us, “I’m 28 years old, and have been working on cars and classics since I was 13 years old. This 1979 Berlinetta caught my attention right away, and since I’m from Indiana, finding a good project car to start with is hard.” Maybe that is because most cars end up either rusted beyond repair or have been turned into a dirt track racer at some point.
Holden found the car while perusing the Internet, and since the car was apparently to nice to cut up, it never became a racecar. We also think that since it is not a Z/28, no one thought it very collectible, and therefore didn’t express an interest. Luckily for Holden, that was a good thing, as that was reflected in the purchase price. According to Holden, “The car was in great shape. The body had no rust, and the frame was perfect. It truly amazed me that this car was actually in Indiana. It was the closest thing to a true barn find that I had seen, so I bought it.”
His initial plans were to remove the original, smog-laden 305 cubic-inch small-block, give it a quick detailing, clean up the engine bay, reinstall everything, and then simply enjoy the car. But, as many times happens, “The mechanic in me took control, and this is what I ended up with two months later,” said Holden with a grin on his face.
The 305ci small-block is still under the hood but has been upgraded with goodies like a Comp Cams Mutha Thumper camshaft, An Edelbrock Performer intake with a Holley carburetor spraying the go-go juice. A set of long-tube headers and an MSD distributor finish the mighty, albeit small, power maker.
Holden finished by stating, “Yes it’s a driver. I built it to enjoy. It is also relatively quick for what it is, and is an absolute fun car to drive and enjoy.”
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