OSHAWA -- Dale Oldham is already the proud owner of seven Chevy Camaros -- but that doesn't mean he isn't in the market for another.
"The last one came out in 2002, so this new one has seven years of new technology," he said, speaking reverently of the new 2010 model. "I was afraid it wasn't going to keep up with the history and the attitude, but I'm really impressed with it."
The president of the Ontario Camaro Club was among a crowd of car enthusiasts who descended on the Oshawa General Motors plant Monday morning, to watch as the first 2010 Camaro rolled off the line.
A few test models have been spotted across Durham in recent weeks, but the first "official" model -- complete with VIN number 001 -- was driven off the line by its new owner, Rick Hendrick, of Hendrick Motor Sports, an American car buff who owns several NASCAR teams and a large automotive chain.
The North Carolina native stepped out of his new wheels to a burst of applause and told the crowd he wished he could drive the sleek black Camaro back home, but was opting to fly, joking that he didn't think he could get it through customs.
Many of the Camaro enthusiasts gathered for the event were itching to get behind the wheel of the new model, including Livio DiCenso, another Ontario Camaro Club member.
"This one is light years ahead of the other Camaro generations," he said. "All the flaws have been eliminated, the fuel economy is improved and the performance has increased."
Not to mention the eye candy aspect.
Mr. DiCenso said he'll definitely be picking one up to add to the 1992 and 1996 Camaros he already has at home, but said he'll have trouble choosing a colour from the rainbow of glossy options available, and is also torn between the coupe and convertible.
GM officials said there have already been about 14,000 orders for the 2010 Camaro and they expect the car to start appearing at dealerships in early April.
Until then, enthusiasts will have to make do with sneaking a peak at the handful already on the road.
"Anywhere you go in this car, you turn heads," said George Saraltic, who works in product communications for GM Canada. "You park outside a coffee shop and come back out and there's a crowd of people around the car
for the story and VIDEO of #001 and Rick Hendrick