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The Chevrolet El Camino, meaning "the road” in Spanish, was introduced in 1959 based on that year's Chevrolet Impala. It was Chevy's response to Ford's Ranchero but not nearly as successful and was discontinued in 1960 after only two years of production. Four years later in 1964 however, the El Camino was back and based on the new Chevrolet Chevelle platform. It offered two six cylinder engines or a V8 with either 195 or 220 horsepower. Another V8 option with more horsepower was eventually offered. The El Camino tended to follow the design trends of the Chevelle that dominated the mid-sized car field. As the Chevelle was periodically restyled, so was the El Camino. Models included SS, Classic, Royal Knight and Conquista. These were essentially trim options but allowed a customer to order an El Camino that was tailored to suit them. In 1971 the Chevy El Camino became a cousin – the GMC Sprint. The only difference between the El Camino and the GMC Sprint/Caballero, were the nameplates and some minor cosmetic trim. The GMC Sprint/Caballero had the same seven engine-options as the El Camino. 1973 saw a restyle of the front end and the largest generation of El Camino but otherwise it was the same car up to 1978 when it became smaller with more sharp-edged styling. It now shared components with the Chevy Malibu and the Chevy Monte Carlo since Chevelle was no longer produced. In 1978 the El Camino/GMC was based on the Chevy Malibu and for the first time it had a unique chassis that was shared with no other Chevrolet. GMC also renamed the Sprint, calling it the Cabellero, and produced it through the 1987 model year which is also when Chevrolet dropped the El Camino and its sister, the Cabellero, from its line due to low sales.
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