20k: Not A Studebaker: 2002 Avanti LS1

The Italian word “Avanti” means “go ahead,” “forward” or even “after you” and is an expression you could use when letting someone in a door ahead of you. You could also use it when letting someone else bid first on a hideously odd looking re-bodied Chevy Camaro. This design harkens back to the original 1962-63 fiberglass bodied Studebaker Avanti, which was unique for its time and soldiered on as an independent marque after being orphaned by Studebaker Corporation’s collapse. Find this 2002 Avanti with LS1 power for sale in Miami, FL currently bidding for $20,088 with 2 days to go.

Recently the Avanti name came up in our research, but in relation to the Lister replica design that was started by Chuck Beck and sold to Avanti Motorcar Company.  The story doesn’t end there, because in 2006 Michael Kelly, the Avanti CEO, was indicted in a huge real estate ponzi scheme bust, accused of bilking money from seniors and Señores alike.  Regardless this Avanti is immediately recognizable as a 4th generation F-body Camaro from its sloping windscreen and highly positive wheel offset.  For some reason GM was stuck producing cars with 1950s era wheel-fender gaps for 50 years while the rest of the world figured out how to properly stack-up suspension tolerances and create proper wheel-fender alignment. GM has finally caught on in the past few years, but even the C5 has fender-wheel offset that would make an Japanese economy car owner laugh.

Pop the hood and you’ll find the Camaro LS1 V8, an all-alloy 5.7 liter pushrod engine that puts out 325 horsepower.  The Avanti uses a Camaro donor car and as such maintains the original engine, trans, suspension, pretty much everything except fenders, hood, trunk and bumpers.

Inside, the folks at Avanti do a good job trying to convince everyone that this isn’t a Camaro by adding embroidered Avanti  logos on the stock Camaro seats, airbag cover, dash, door cards…very convincing…

If you are surprised at the current bidding price, you aren’t alone.  However, this is a rare car (production numbers aren’t clear, but less than 100 per year) and the Avanti has generated a small but faithful following.  Lastly, this is a very low mile example and looks to be in excellent shape.  So…go ahead…it’s yours…

See another F-body based “not a kit car.” email us here: tips@dailyturismo.com