Frequently asked questions

1. What is my El Camino worth?
Check here: VMR Auto Guides

2. Where can I get parts for my El Camino?
Check here: El Camino parts vendors

3. What is the towing capacity of a 78-88 El Camino?
(Author: Ernie G. from
According to the Chevy Recreation and Trailering Guide there are three possible trailering configurations for an El Camino. All require a deadweight hitch bolted to the frame through pre-punched holes. Equalizing and antisway assemblies were also required and were available through outside sources.

Light towing (class 1 hitch):
An El Camino equipped with a 3.8L (LC3/LD5) motor, automatic transmission, and a 2.73 rear can pull up to a gross weight of 2000 pounds with 200 pounds tongue load.

Medium towing (class 2 hitch):
An El Camino equipped with a 5.0L (LG4) motor, automatic transmission, and a 2.41 rear can pull up to a gross weight of 4000 pounds with 500 pounds tongue load.

Heavy towing (class 3 hitch):
An El Camino equipped with a 5.0L (LG4) motor, automatic transmission, and a 2.73 rear can pull up to a gross weight of 5000 pounds with 600 pounds tongue load.

Medium and Heavy towing also require a heavy duty battery and heavy duty radiator.

4. What is the bed size of a 78-88 El Camino?
79.5" at longest point, front bulkhead to tailgate
45" between wheel wells
59.1" between side builkheads
53.1" tailgate width

"The El Camino/Caballero pickup box features double-wall construction on the side panels and a ribbed all-steel floor. The tailgate, featuring easy one-hand operation and grain-tight seal, also has double-wall construction and forms a continuation of the ribbed floor when lowered. The pickup box has a capacity of approximately 35.5 cubic feet.

All El Camino/Caballero models have a bright metal molding at the top of the box and tailgate to prevent paint chipping when loading or unloading."

5. How do I position the motor mounts when replacing a V6 with a V8?
For a 5th gen V6 installation, the motor mounts are mounted in the rearmost position on the front crossmember. When installing a V8 (this applies to Chevy smallblocks, since that's all I have direct experience with) the mounts need to be repositioned to the frontmost position on the crossmember.

This can be tedious at best, since there are nuts inside the crossmember that need to be held as the bolts are removed from the top. Several methods have been used to accomplish this. Some people have used a combination of socket extensions and knuckle joints, some have created their own wrench by welding a piece of bar stock onto a box-end wrench, others have used a hole saw to cut a hole in the crossmember to allow access to the nuts. I've also been able to do this by removing the bolt that retains the lower control arm and lowering it with a floor jack, then accessing the nuts from the end of the crossmember.

6. Will the nose from an 83-88 Monte Carlo SS fit my 78-88 El Camino?
The answer to this is, "Yes....but..." There are a few other little things to take into consideration when approaching this. First, the Monte nose is 1 3/4 inches wider than the front of the El Camino. So if you want to use this piece you must also use the Monte's hood, fenders and doors. But since the door glass is different, you must remove the Monte glass and replace it with the El Camino glass so that the B pillar line is correct.

If this is not what you want to do, you can get an SS nose kit from Custom Components or Lauren Engineering. But be prepared to lay out some cash and spend a lot of time on the conversion. Both kits run in the area of $1000 and can take somewhere around 100 hours to install...more or less depending on your skill level.

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