The Chevy El Camino first produced for the 1959 model year. El Camino is spanish for “the road” and was created to compete with Ford’s Ranchero. In North America the vehicle is considered a truck and is titled as such. Through the eighties, the El Camino has sold under four main models: the Super Sport, the Royal Knight, the Conquista and the regular El Camino.
Five generations of the El Camino have been produced before finally being discontinued in 1987. The model was briefly shelved from 1960 through 1964. 1959 was the first year of the flamboyant “batwing” full-sized Chevrolet was produced and these extravagant vehicles sold in far fewer numbers thant the conservative Ford Rancheros of the day. A more conservative El Camino was introduced in 1960 but curiously enough did even worse that the 1959 model. It was due to this dismal showing that Chevrolet decided to halt any future production of the El Camino.
By 1964 with the Ranchero still showing strong sales numbers, Chevrolet decided to give the El Camino another chance. This time around Chevrolet market the El Camino as a practical work type vehicle and 1965 saw an upgraded engine and more options. By the 1980′s the most common engine found in El Caminos of this era was Chevy’s 305 cubic-inch small block V8 rated at 150 or 165 horsepower (123 kW).