Davin and Matt from Hagerty are back at the Lingenfelter Collection for a new installment of Generation Gap. This time they have a shoot-out between two unique “truck” offerings from GM. In one corner stands the iconic 1970 El Camino. In the other corner is the modern 2004 SSR. When you really look at these two vehicles you realize how GM attempted to do something bold and different. This particular El Camino isn’t your standard model, it’s equipped with the legendary LS-5 big block measuring in at 454ci.
The General rated this big block at 360 horsepower and 500-ft. lbs. of tire melting torque – impressive numbers even for today’s standards. Putting that power to the ground was the Muncie “Rock Crusher” 4-speed transmission. With those kind of torque numbers you can see where the trans got that nick name and out back a stout 12-bolt rearend with 4.11 gears attempting to put the power to the street. The El Camino was built for the 1/4 mile.
On the other side is a very modern interpretation of the El Camino’s formula. This particular SSR is equipped with a 5.3l LS based V8 and a Magnuson M112 intercooled supercharger. Which is good for 385 horsepower and 395 ft-lbs of torque. The SSR might not be seen in the same light as the El Camino from a styling department, but step on that go pedal and listen to the sweet sounds of the LS supercharged engine open up.
Both “trucks” were sold in limited numbers the El Camino with its big block manual trans option, only 325 were produced. The SSR sold 9000 units in 2004. Matt and Davin will test both vehicles in these categories, performance, collectability, ease of ownership, looks and passion. Both are unique and gorgeous creations by the General, to see which one old school big block or modern boosted LS comes out on top, check out the video and leave your comments and opinions.
Growing up in a household of gearheads, it was only natural that car culture would rub off on Casidy. Being a young writing major, Casidy brings her enthusiastic talents to GM EFI Magazine.