Wondering about wild grapes

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Wondering; what was your favorite vehicle?

Think back over the years and the many vehicles that you have owned. Now think about which one you enjoyed the most, and if you could have just one of your vehicles back, which one would it be and why?

That is an easy question for me, although I have had many vehicles that I loved and enjoyed. Of course you never forget your fist car. Mine was a 1955 DeSoto, two tone green and beige. It had been my Dad’s and I took it over when he bought another car. I didn’t turn 16 until early in 1959, so by the time I took it over it was about five years old and had over 150,000 miles on it. My dad was a salesman for H. J. Heinz Company. When I quit driving that car, it had over 200,000 miles on it. I parked it up in my Dad’s back yard and left it there for a couple of years. Even though it had been sitting that long, Dad hooked up a new battery to it and it started and ran long enough to get it out of the yard and down to the driveway where the junk man’s wrecker could get it.

Another of my favorites would be a 1965 Olds 88 convertible. It was white with a blue top and a 425 cubic inch engine. And of course the motorcycle that I had.

But by far, the most favorite was my 1957 Chevy Convertible. I acquired it a year or so before I got married. Paid $400.00 for it. Found out soon enough that the motor was shot. Found a fellow whose car was hit from behind and demolished. He had a souped up 283 Chevy engine in it that had a full race cam, solid lifters, domed pistons, shaved heads, and a huge carburetor. Sounded like a thrashing machine when it was just sitting there idling. Of course I bought it and put it in my “new” car. Now, not only did I have a flashy ’57 Chevy convertible, but a really fast one to boot. That engine would turn 8000 rpms at the drop of a hat. I usually shifted at 6800 rpms. Oh yeah, did I tell you it had a Hurst shifter on the floor?
OK, now I suppose you don’t believe me. It all sounds too good to be true, right? Well, I only found two pictures of it last night and I will gladly show them to you. This first picture is of me, before I was married, getting ready to go for a ride:

Didn’t I look cool? Dang, those where the good old days. I never felt better driving any other car than that one.

The summer before I got married, I took my Mother and she and I drove in my ’57 with the top down from Butler, Pennsylvania to Salem, Virginia to visit her brother and their family. She enjoyed it but got a little dehydrated in all that sun and wind. Had to stop at a restaurant and get her a couple glasses of ice tea and a light lunch. She enjoyed the rest of the trip much more.

Here is a picture of my Mother and my Aunt standing next to my Chevy:

I kept it until just before our first son was born. I had already purchases the 1965 Olds, so decided to sell the Chevy. I originally paid $400.00 for it, put over $2500.00 into it fixing it up, and finally sold it for $400.00. I sure wish that I had kept it. But back then, it was just another old car, yeah, right????!!!! I am still cussing my self out for selling it.

Now, what was your favorite vehicle and why?


  1. Well, we all remember our first "really our own one" and mine was a 1959 Chevy Impala, with that big ole 348 truck motor. Didn't take long
    till it had sucked a valve or two and ruined the motor. Had a bunch of souped up VW's through the years. But I guess the one car I would want
    back was my 1977 International Scout Terra II pickup!! Had a big bad boy 345 V8, automatic tyranny and REAL Warner lock out front hubs.
    Removable fiberglass top. The thing would climb straight up!! Sold it when I went to work for Xerox and got a free company car.
    Wish I had it back

  2. There has never been a car like the '57 Chevy, and you sure had a beautiful one.

    In 1962 I bought a Corvair, and I think that was my all time favorite. Engine in the back meant I had no trouble driving in snow; air cooled engine meant I didn't have to worry about a radiator; stick shift for better mileage; that little car got me 22 mpg in the city! I personally think that the big oil companies paid Ralph Nader to go after any car that got over 8 mpg!

  3. I did have a '57 at one time, but mine was a hardtop convertable and not a rag top!

    I think my favorite was my '63 corvette! Two tops and a whole lot of fun!

  4. My favorite was also my first. A '92 Jeep Cherokee. Like you, it was originally my fathers, and I took it over when I turned 16 in '96. I drove that myself for almost 8 years until it finally gave up the ghost. I treated it very poorly, and it always came back for more. To me, it was the very image of ruggedness.

    It's a shame that Chrysler tried to change their image around 2000, and completely "revamped" the Jeep line. The only other vehicle left world wide which is such a icon of simplicity and ruggedness is the Jeep Wrangler, but those are popular and far to over priced ($30K).

    Of course, I've also grown to have some very green concerns and the 14-18MPG I got with that Jeep would no longer be acceptable to me. So I guess we all change. I wonder if anyone would be interested in making a plug-in hybrid version of the M38 Jeep. Or even a full battery electric.

  5. 1963 Olds F-85..My first car..light little car with a huge engine...

  6. Ben, yep I agree, the first one is special. I also had a few 4x4's and loved them, but the '57 was top on my list.

    Gypsy, I also had a Corvair Spider convertable, but had trouble with it blowing head gaskets. The turbor charger must have been too much for it, so traded it in on the 65 Olds convertable.

    Hey Hermit, Wow, a -63 vet with two tops. Nice ride for sure. I think that beats my chevy.

    Grant, I have had a lot of 4x4's and now I have a Jeep Liberty that I pull behind my RV. It seems to go anywhere I ask it to go. Doesn't have the clearance that my older 4x4s had.

    Frann, you can't beat that combination, I mean you can't BEAT that combination.

  7. I got to say my old 1927 Buick with a rumble seat had to be the funest car I ever owned. Not my first car, but funest. That sucker would go "anywhere"....just like a jeep. In the winter time, one crank...yes crank, it was up an run'n.

  8. BB, I think of those old buick sedans as being gangster cars, but yours must have been a roadster with a rumble seat. Does that mean it was a convertable, too.

  9. My favourite ride I owned was my motorcycle. My Kawasaki ZX6-R. It was a 600cc crotch rocket. But it was comfortable enough to ride around Australia with. And I had many long trips on it from Sydney to Philip Island to watch the Australian motorcycle grand prix.

    Car-wise, I haven't owned much. But my latest car is a FIAT Punto. 1.9 litre, turbo charged. It's a small hatch back, but it goes like a V8. I enjoy driving the car, it's comfortable on long trips, it's small enough to drive around the city and large enough to haul large items.

    My favourite cars are from the 60's. I love the Holden HR Premier. I think because I use to see them being driven around town as newish cars. They look cool. I'd like to own one one day and restore it.

    My brother bought a brand spanking new Ford XY GTHO when they came out. Brand new for $2300. Our mum told him to sell it because it's a gas guzzler. He eventually listened and did so. One of them recently sold at auction for a measly $983,000.00

  10. Howdy Pipsqeek, $983,000.99 WOW, never know what the old classics will go for now-a-days.

    I had a Kawasaki 600-z that I liked a lot. There wasn't an entrance ramp to a freeway that I couldn't get it up to 100 mph before entering the freeway. Fast bike, for sure, red-line 10,000 rpm.

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  12. Hey Dizzy

    Kinda like them fender skirts you had on that 57 Chevy--sweet.

    My first car was a 1968 Dodge Charger. Man, I wish I still had that car parked out front. Got bummed out back in 1971 and swapped it straight across for a 1964 Volkswagen.

  13. My favorite is my current Truck. It has taken me to lots of neat locations and back. Like today on the beach with soft sand I had no business trying to drive through. It got me out with a push of a button (4x4 button) and into more adventures.

  14. Hey Moe, Welcome to my blog. Thanks, those skirts kind of set it off.
    '68 Chargers were really nice. I also liked the Chalenger. MoPar made some good cars.

    Hey Barney, Yes, I bet you do like your truck. It sounds like a really nice one. Since it is a diesel, you have to be more cautous when driving in sand. The diesel motor makes it front heavy.

  15. DD you have that right. That diesel will sink out of sight in an instant. Like at the Fish Pass jetty this morning. Yea on the 4X4 button on the dash.

  16. Hello, DD. I posted a comment earlier but I couldn't get it to go through. So here I will try again... Hoping for no repetition.

    First, I LOVE cars! I could live-eat-breathe cars!! A co-worker and I can often be found perusing cars online during break. It's the single greatest benefit of the internet... being able to lookie-lou at cars. Heh heh.

    Your '57 Chevy Vert was a beauty! That car is amazing! I wish you still had it.

    My first car was a '70 VW Beetle, metallic blue with red interior and an under-dash a/c. My father bought it for my sister. He painted it and added the ac. When I turned 14 and started driving, I inherited it from my sister. It cost me about $5 a month for gas.

    My second car was a midnight blue '69 Pontiac Firebird with a 3-speed Hurst on the floor. My brother GAVE it to me. How lucky was I?? It was quite different than the VW. I loved them both. The Firebird was a speed demon and I got pulled over more than once.

    I'm lucky that my favorite car of all time is my current car, a morea grun '95 BMW 325i Convertible that I've had forever. It started as my daily driver, then got moved to the back of the garage when I updated to a new 330i sedan. When the "money days" ended in 2008, I sold the sedan and the vert became my daily driver again. I'm so grateful that I never got rid of it. I still love this car. Too bad it can't negotiate the ranch roads!

    I lamented on my blog earlier this year about whether or not I should spend the money to fix some mechanicals plus rebuild the front end, and I'm so glad I decided to do it. It still drives like a dream with almost 186,000 miles on it. It has some cosmetic issues, but in due time. The desert sun has not been kind to the paint and the last time I had a new top put on it, the headliner didn't get the proper attention.

    Knocking on wood that it keeps moving down the road. It's paid for and I hope to drive it for another few years. A recent compression test revealed that the motor is in fine shape.

    Well, I could talk about cars forever, but I must tend to a venison stew. Take care! Thanks for a fun post.

  17. Ginger, Keep your car, no matter what. Don't do what I did, cause I have been kicking myself ever since. You don't want to have to kick yourself. Now, I woldn't mind a bowl of that venison stew, for sure.