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Old 10-02-2011, 07:23 PM   #1
exflirt
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"Lyssa," the build of my tribute Camaro

My interest in Camaros goes back a short ways, to 2001. At the time I had a Japanese 4-door sedan that was due to be serviced for the timing belt and some other items, meaning it would be in the shop for a few days and I would need a rental car. I had a problem paying to rent something that I drove every day (another Japanese 4-door sedan), and so I searched the area for a fun convertible to drive. I rented a red automatic V6 convertible Camaro for a few days, and from that point on I was hooked. I was surprised at how growly even that little six-cylinder engine was! When I went to return the car, the owner of the agency attempted to sell me the car, but I knew if I were to own a Camaro it would not be that exact car.

Fast forward a year and some life changes later, to February 2002. I read on the internet that the Camaro was being discontinued and reputable sources confirmed this information. I went into overdrive, and on March 8th 2002 I placed an order for a red convertible SS, M6, with almost full SLP options. My Monster was delivered to me at the beginning of July that year, and my love affair with Camaros was officially underway. For several years after that, my car garnered tons of attention - from old guys in Corvettes giving me the head nod, from punks in ricers revving their engines at me, and from other Camaro owners with thumbs ups. Due to the car, I was a member of a special club and I loved it.

My girl was babied, no doubt about it. I very rarely let anyone else work on her, preferring instead to work on her at home. Hardly anyone else drove her, as I was pretty particular as to how she was handled. And while I drove her like she was a sports car with an amazing engine under the hood, I took care of her as if she was an irreplaceable, one-of-a-kind automobile.

Exactly eight years after I ordered her, my car was rear-ended at a high rate of speed by a cell phone driver while I was stopped on the freeway. Hit from behind at about 50 mph, she was slammed into a Land Cruiser, which was pushed into a delivery van. That van would have hit the car in front of him had traffic not started to move at that instant. Only the center portion of the car, the passenger cabin, was intact - the front and rear parts of the car had collapsed in on themselves as they were designed to do - and for the severity of the accident, I walked away amazingly unscathed. But my baby was undeniably totaled. Thankfully I was able to prove to my insurance company that my car was indeed a one-of-a-kind car, and I was reimbursed as well as can be expected.

When Chevy finally released the build dates for the 5th generation convertible, I was ecstatic! I had been driving my daily driver for almost a year, and I was ready for some horsepower and a manual transmission! I ordered a convertible with the Synergy package, which as most people know, was not released as expected but was held by Chevy until the very end of the 2011 build out. At Arizona while attending CamaroFest, I saw the 45th and changed my order that day, April 15th. Having owned a 2002 35th Anniversary (not an LE, though) Camaro SS, it was especially "special" to me to replace her, sad though it was, with a 45th Anniversary Camaro SS. The wait was nerve-wracking and seemed to go on forever. I'm sure I drove Becky in the Order thread and all my family and friends crazy in the months before the car arrived.

During the wait, an opportunity arose to send the car to SEMA and after some negotiations, all the details were worked out. While the car was being built, sponsor discussions were underway, parts were being ordered, and as they arrived they were being stockpiled in a warehouse. My car was built and delivered all the way to California in an unbelievable, blistering 9 days. After the car arrived, it was detailed, tinted, and had the clear bra installed before I ever even laid eyes on her. I arrived at Selman's in Southern California on August 19th to sign the papers and take possession of my new baby, Lyssa.

The first order of business was a birthday cruise for ddunerider, where I was one of the fortunate few not to get a ticket! I really liked the car, but I must admit, after driving a full SLP SS for so many years I was a little underwhelmed by a stock Camaro ... I drove Lyssa for two weeks before turning her over to my build coordinator, Rick Andrade, for the build out. I would not see the car for almost two months It was very difficult to leave the car after only a short time, but I knew that she would be amazing the next time I laid eyes on her! Also, I was kind of used to my daily driver by that point

To summarize Lyssa's build, she will be a tribute car to my 35th Anniversary Camaro. My baby was red, with black and silver as accents. Lyssa is black, with red and silver as accents. As her stripes are painted on, they will be painted in the Rally Red paint. As decisions about modifications are made, they will be made with an eye to my 35th. I can't wait to personalize my 45th into an sophisticated yet forceful Camaro.

Stay tuned - more information, details on the mods, and pictures to come very shortly!
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8.26.2014 - Deposit placed with Mike Furman @ Criswell Corvette in MD for 2015 2LZ Laguna Blue Z06 Convertible, navigation, carbon flash gfx, carbon flash stinger stripe, spectra gray wheels, dark gray calipers, gray interior, suede seat inserts. EXCITED is an understatement!
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Old 10-02-2011, 07:42 PM   #2
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Looks great congrats on the new vert
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Old 10-02-2011, 10:02 PM   #3
exflirt
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Shifter swap

Lyssa was ordered with the stock shifter, as Hurst sponsored the car with their competition version with a shorter throw. I gave Rick carte blanche to choose a shift knob that he prefers.

Swapping out the shifter was the first actual mod done on the car, performed on September 8th. After some back and forth, he decided to use a white Hurst shift ball to go with the white 45th panels on the interior. Which do you prefer?
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8.26.2014 - Deposit placed with Mike Furman @ Criswell Corvette in MD for 2015 2LZ Laguna Blue Z06 Convertible, navigation, carbon flash gfx, carbon flash stinger stripe, spectra gray wheels, dark gray calipers, gray interior, suede seat inserts. EXCITED is an understatement!
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Old 10-02-2011, 11:31 PM   #4
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very nice, congrats
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Old 10-04-2011, 12:57 PM   #5
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I think the white shifter looks better.
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Old 10-05-2011, 09:04 PM   #6
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I like the engraving and style of the black, but the white looks better.
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Old 10-11-2011, 01:42 AM   #7
ddunerider
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Black!!
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Old 10-11-2011, 06:59 PM   #8
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I like it.
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Old 10-12-2011, 01:02 PM   #9
colemanvoice
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Remembering the 35th while enjoying the 45th...very nice.
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:19 PM   #10
urr2slo

 
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post up your SEMA pics.
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Old 12-10-2011, 01:08 AM   #11
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Looked amazing at SEMA
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