Remembering the Fourth-Generation Camaro—1993-2002
As the fifth-generation Camaro bows out to make way for the all-new six-gen, Chevrolet has asked some of its top designers (and biggest Camaro fans) to look back at the classic American muscle car’s past five generations.
After giving the first, second, and third-gen Camaros their due, it’s time to take a closer look at the fourth-generation Camaro, which ran from 1993 to 2002. None other than Chevy Camaro exterior design manager (and 1993 Camaro Z28 owner) Kirk Bennion was tabbed for the task of discussing fourth-gen model.
“More than 20 years after its debut, the fourth-generation Camaro still looks as sleek as anything on showroom floors today,” says Bennion. “It was a very aggressive design intended to evolve the proportion from the third-generation car with a provocative exterior and greater aerodynamic performance. It has a very sculptural form vocabulary that was definitely all-new for the Camaro.”
A fast-rake windshield and “bottom-breathing” engine-cooling arrangement were among the dramatic changes to the fourth-gen Camaro.
“Having a low front end was important to the design,” Bennion says. “It really worked with the high deck lid rear spoiler to enhance the appearance of motion. All these years later, it still looks contemporary – and fast!”
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Bennion’s a fan of the higher-performance 1996 Camaro SS’ bold, aggressive good looks, and chose that model to highlight the fourth-generation’s distinctive design elements:
- Four, mini-halogen headlamps were new during design development and helped achieve the goal for the low front end
- Super-fast 68-degree windshield was one of the most radical of its day, and was a primary element of the car’s sleek proportion
- Smooth body sides with integrated wheel flares were a first for Camaro
- Black upper section on Z28 and SS models reinforced sleekness
- Integrated, wraparound rear wing was another first and its shape was ultimately determined by numerous wind-tunnel tests
- SS-specific hood scoop looked appropriately aggressive and contributed to performance.
- Seventeen-inch five-spoke wheels were a new, coveted feature on the 1996 SS models.
Up next—the fifth and final installment of our series gives the current fifth-gen Camaro one last look.