'69 Camaro
NASA Rocket
A.J. Meade started his motor-driven hobby on two wheels, riding motocross bikes until he was 16 years old. That's when his focus shifted to the four-wheeled kind. He was immediately drawn to Camaros, and started with a few third-gens. He really wanted a car he could participate in NASA (National Auto Sport Association) road racing events and autocross events, so he sold the third-gen he had at the time. A.J. had been working as an ASE-certified master tech at the local Chevy dealer, so when he had the opportunity to pick up an '01 Corvette Z06, he snatched it up. This reinforced his love of running on racetracks, and for the GM LS-series engine.

In March of 2010, A.J. sold the Corvette to buy the first-gen Camaro he always wanted. He planned to build the Camaro with the intention to drive it harder and faster than the Vette. He bought a donor '01 Camaro for its drivetrain and interior pieces. This was a great package to work with because it just plain worked right off the bat and anything he needed he could buy at any GM dealership. The car itself wasn't as trouble-free, however. Nearly all of the sheetmetal was unusable. The roof and inner structure was sound, but A.J. replaced everything else to be sure he started with a clean, rust-free car. To make the Camaro handle even better, he mounted the engine almost 7 inches rearward to aid in better weight distribution for the track. Everything he could replace with aluminum or carbon fiber, he has. The original plan didn't include that much metalwork, but things change! A.J. hopes to get the car buttoned up by the summer of 2011.

A.J. Meade, 27 • Reynoldsburg, OH
400 rear-wheel horsepower
Type: '01 GM LS1
Block: aluminum
Oiling: factory
Rotating assembly: factory
Cylinder heads: aluminum
Camshaft: mild aftermarket hydraulic roller
Valvetrain: COMP pushrods and adjustable rockers
Induction: LS6 intake
Ignition: GM coil-on-plug
Cooling: Jegs double-pass radiator
Exhaust: tri-Y stainless headers, 3-inch stainless exhaust, and Borla mufflers
Fasteners: Grade 8 and stainless
Transmission/shifter: '01 T56 six-speed, Pro 5.0 shifter
Driveshaft: Inland Empire
Rear axle: Ford 9-inch
Front suspension: Speed Tech full subframe, ATS tall spindles, DSE subframe connectors
Rear suspension: Lateral Dynamics three-link, QA1 coilovers
Brakes: six- and four-piston calipers with ABS and traction control, Tilton floor-mounted pedals
Body: AMD sheetmetal, aluminum front clip and trunk lid, smoothed firewall, Anvil carbon/glass wheelwells
Paint: Electron Blue
Wheels: 18x10 and 18x12 Forgeline WC3R satin center, polished lip
Tires: 295/35R18 and 335/30R18 BFG KDW