Al Oppenheiser was named the Vehicle Chief Engineer for the Chevrolet Camaro on November 1, 2007. He is responsible for bringing the 5th Generation Chevrolet Camaro into production, in addition to the Pontiac G8. He joined the Global Rear Wheel Drive team after spending 4 years as the Director of Concept & Vehicle Integration for the GM Performance Division.
He began his career with General Motors in 1985 at the GM Technical Center in Warren, Michigan as a test engineer, and subsequently held several positions within engineering including Development and Validation manager on the Corvette platform.
In 1991, he moved to the International Joint Venture Programs as a design release engineer responsible for the GM content on GM’s Joint Venture Vehicles with Toyota, Suzuki, Isuzu and Daewoo. In 1993, he was promoted to Product Engineering Manager for the Geo Metro, and helped develop a global Gamma program in 1996 with Opel by facilitating the relationship between Opel and Suzuki for the global Agila program while in Germany.
Promoted to vehicle chief engineer in 2001, Al led the engineering development and launch of the Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon Midsize Truck program.
In 2004, Al became the Director of Concept & Vehicle Integration for the GM Performance Division. In that role, Al was responsible for the engineering and build of all of GM’s Concept Vehicle, including both the Camaro Coupe and Camaro Convertible. He also ran GM’s Bonneville Salt Flats racing team, as well as directing Hot Rod builds for celebrities such as Jay Leno and Reggie Jackson.
When Al is not spending time on the Camaro program, he enjoys spending time in the 1968 Camaro Convertible he restored from the ground-up, riding his Harley, and is on the lookout for a ‘30’s Hot Rod to build next.