Kevin Kessler's '69 Camaro

By: Todd Veney | 08/21/2018 < Back to Motor Life Home

Everybody has that car they always wanted, but for MSD's Kevin Kessler, it wasn't a matter of nearly wanting it. He had to have it. As a high school kid in the mid-1980s, he kept inquiring about a '69 Camaro owned by a family of local racers, and, told that they would eventually sell it to him, methodically wore them down until they finally relented.

That was more than 30 years ago, in 1986. The car was already 17 years old then, but Kessler has had it almost twice that long now. "They were going to sell me the shell, and I was going to buy their engine when they were finished with it," he said. "It never happened." Instead, he and his friends started piecing the car together on their own, eventually deciding on a 383 stroker with a BorgWarner T5 5-speed transmission that have long since been replaced by the current 327 and Muncie 4-speed.

"I think the car originally came with a big block," Kessler said. "Once I didn't have the original motor, I got one from a racer here in town, a guy who did circle track and drag stuff." Today, the 327 small-block has a limited-edition 40th anniversary MSD 6AL ignition box, MSD Atomic TBI fuel-injection system, MSD 85557 Pro Billet Distributor, MSD Super Conductor black spark plug wires and separators, and an MSD 8222 high-vibration canister coil.

Kessler, 48, was born and raised in MSD's hometown of El Paso, Texas, graduated from Texas A&M University, and, after stints in Austin and Houston, returned to his native El Paso to work at MSD, where's been for the past nine years. "I love seeing all the new products that the engineering group across all the brands comes up with," said Kessler, an Account Manager who handles national retail accounts. "It's really nice to see something that started out a little baby become a giant that people really want to buy."

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