To analyze Chevrolet’s second-generation Camaro, introduced for the 1970 model year, the bowtie called upon the executive director of GM design for Chevrolet trucks and global architecture, Ken Parkinson. Chevrolet awarded the Camaro with its own dedicated architecture for its second iteration, giving General Motors designers “freedom to create pure expression,” Parkinson says.
As Ken explains, the second-generation Camaro’s styling evolved heavily throughout its long 12 model years. For his design analysis, Parkinson focused on the 1970-73 model years for their “pure expression and original design.” He says the second-gen car is “pure Camaro,” with a “dramatic proportion and lean, muscular form.”
Similar to the first-gen car, the horizontal crease that runs to and from each wheel opening creates “strong tension and forward motion in the body.” Just below the crease, the Camaro’s body begins to sharply tuck in, “exposing the tires for a more muscular appearance and great stance,” Parkinson notes. Out front, the split-bumper design seen on RS models “gave the car an aggressive and contemporary design,” and “arguably one of the greatest fronts on any car.”
Other notable design features on the second-gen Camaro include the hood design, which Parkinson says helped to exaggerate the power of the V8 engine and the “simple” and “beautiful” Chevrolet signature dual taillights. The design of the Camaro would begin to change dramatically after 1974, appearing more and more modern until the third-generation of the car was introduced in 1982.