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slusher

What do you miss about classic cars or cars of the past?

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Posted (edited)

I miss the variety and the ability to change appearance/performance to make "my" car unique.  in the tiny town I grew up in-pop 1492- in the 70's the town had the following:

62 chevy II  jacked way up in rear with gas tank painted in red, white and blue stripes

71 ls6 chevelle with cragar super tricks

70ish tbird with chrome rims n 4 doors

65 mustang coupe w/cragars

66 Shelby mustang-guy STILL has it

68 coronet with high rise intake/dual carbs and no second gear

60 chevy 2 door belair w/cragars

66 289 stang jacked up and the widest cheater slicks available

pinto with a 460 shoehorned into it

69 buick skylark

customized 65 chevy truck

67 camaro

2 67 impalas

62 convertible impala

70 gto

numerous 70s short bed trucks-all 3 makes-with rims,headers, exhaust cutouts

my 67 cutlass drop top n one of the ta's

76 lt camaro

70 cuda

69 corvair

73 trans am w/455 n powerglide

numerous late z-28s and trans ams

2 65 red/white ford trucks

27 steel bodied t bucket w/454 n high rise w/2 big holleys

we all had jobs and we all worked on them to the extent of our ability and we drove them in the rain. we had a shell statio that offered high octane gas but we ran lots of aviation gas-a couple of farmers owned airplanes for crop dusting so though illegal it could be had

now I own an 07 triple black vet convertible  w/16k, borla exhaust, k n n filter, a little massaging of the software but theres not much I can do under the hood...its very easy to drive, col ac, probably faster than all the above cars, better made but there was just something bout that ta with the 455 that spoke to my soul.  I  also have a 40 chevy pu rat rod on a tube frame with a bored 40 over 350, aftermarket heads, etc...worn out rear shocks, a mixture of 40 chevy/70s front suspension, no ac or heat and its way more fun to drive than the vet unless im playing with mustangs...he he

the cars/trucks today are what the people want...the majority like the tech doodads and don't care at all how fast their car goes.

if I win the lottery im buying a hemi superbird at barrett-jackson and ROASTING the tires in the parking lot, then driving it back to Missouri and will smile every time I pass a new plastic cookie cutter car.

 

 

 

Edited by jeffdeoranut
forgot stuff

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The way New cars USED to smell.

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58 minutes ago, Snake45 said:

Really? The new Challeger's wheelbase is 6" longer than the original. That means its wheelbase is longer than a (full size) '55-'57 Chevy or '64-''67 GM A-body [Chevelle, GTO, etc], and is the same as a '68-'72 GM A-body station wagon or El Camino. (And most of the real first-gen ponycars were on 108" wheelbase; Cougar and Challenger were longer.)  It's 6" taller and 500 pounds heavier than the '70. It's not a ponycar anymore, it's a midsize car (today it might even be considered a "big" car) dressed up with some 1970 Challenger styling cues. 

Not that I'd have a free one towed out of my driveway.....:lol:

Fun fact, the Challenger/Charger/300 platform was designed around Mercedes components from the mid-90s. Yup, even the mighty Hellcat and Demon are based on a mid-90s sedan.

I've been saying this for a while, that new cars are porky. As I said above, it's why I sold my Challenger. My thoughts to make it better? Remove the bulky plush seats and replace with a lightweight Recaro style bucket, simplify the rear seat too, ditch the massive stereo, make AC optional, no sunroof, thinner glass and sound deadening, replace some body panels with composites or aluminum, lighter weight wheels, no foglights, no power windows/mirrors/locks, no alarm, no remote start, no cruise. I think it would be fairly simple to shave 500lb of weight out of that car. Do all of that, keep the SRT drivetrain and suspension, and I'd buy one again. 

It worked for Porsche with the GT3.

:)

 

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24 minutes ago, Oldcarfan27 said:

2 door hardtops.

Round headlights, that made the car seem as if it was looking at you.

15 inch wheels, with 60 series white letter tires.

Wheels with a deep offset.

Engines that looked good when you opened the hood.

Multi-carb setups.

Cubic Inches - not Liters.

Car chase movies!

PREACH IT, Brother Oldcarfan! Can I get a AY-MEN from the choir?!B):lol:

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33 minutes ago, Oldcarfan27 said:

2 door hardtops.

You can blame the Safety Nazis for the demise of that style. They won't make those, but convertibles are still around?? Same goes for the four door hardtop. The cars looked SO MUCH BETTER without that ungainly center post!

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Ok, I'll jump into this topic.  First off, has anyone defined "classic" yet?  I know it depends on your age.  I've owned a 1948 Chevy pickup, that at the time was 48 years old.  Fast forward to now, and my 1969 Chevy pickup is ... 49 years old, and youngsters call it a classic, but I consider it just old, but it does have a historical plate.  I need to have a paradigm shift when I drive it, such a huge difference from my 2016 electronic device with wheels (Honda Civic).

What to miss:
1. Windshield wipers that are one speed, and slow at that.  RainX is great stuff.
2. Defroster that is like mouse's breath.  I got caught in a gullywasher, just about used up the Kleenex wiping the inside of the windshield.
3. Smell of gas and exhaust, coming through the holes in the firewall.
4. Watching the gas gauge drop like a rock.
5. Sounds like a jet fighter taking off, when going into a headwind, at freeway speed.
6. Having to plan way ahead for braking.  Even though this pickup has a 1 ton brake booster, the drum brakes have no ABS.
7. The sound of the power steering pump, I shouldn't turn when not moving.
8. Waving at other owners who are enthusiasts.  Those who consider it just another old truck don't.
9. Steel, no plastic door panels, trim, etc.
10. Ordering parts, and then finding out they got the wrong one, even though you double checked part numbers and took pictures and.....
11. Finding out many parts are reproductions made in China.  If you were to totally restore an American vehicle nowadays, it would end up being about 1/3 Made In China.  But I'm digressing, not staying on topic.
12. Wanting to get a model kit, and finding out they are collectible and expensive from those who know this.  Nothing to miss here.

Today you need a mortgage to buy a brand new pickup.  No such thing as a 'stripper' anymore.  Bet everyone would agree the low cost is what we miss.

IMG_8054.JPG

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22 hours ago, Snake45 said:

The new Challenger isn't bad looking...until you compare it side by side with an original "real" Challenger and you see that the new one is bigger, fatter, and doesn't really have the classic ponycar proportions at all.

They look more like "crossover vehicles/ SUV's"....lol

 

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My whole issue is with the look of cars now days. The performance is great!!, but I can throw a brick pretty fast too...…..its still just an UGLY brick.

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50 minutes ago, 89AKurt said:

 No such thing as a 'stripper' anymore. 

Yes, there is. You just have to resist adding options, trim packages, etc.

$28,295.00 in 2018 had the same buying power as $4,074.54 in 1969

Annual inflation over this period was about 4.03%

image.png.d37fc4ca05d90223c47ccb54b8a3e441.png

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I'm not mechanically inclined so I can't speak to the simplicity of maintenance, but it does seem that mile for mile most of todays cars are pretty reliable. What bugs me the most? They all look the same to me! They all seem to look like the result of the same wind tunnel test for aerodynamic efficiency....no individual style whatsoever. And most cars these days seem to have made up names that don't relate to anything ...they just sound exotic...or foreign. There used to be Tempests, Mustangs, Stingrays, Barracudas, Wildcats, Cougars....now we have...Elantras? Or letters and numbers.

 

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Posted (edited)
On 8/27/2018 at 7:18 PM, Bucky said:

I bought a new Dodge Avenger in '95. It seemed like those cars were everywhere, along with the Chrysler Sebring cousin to the Avenger. Now, they don't seem to be around.

*cough* Chevy Vega *cough*

I miss the "character" of the 60's/early 70's cars.  Every year's styling was distinct and different.   But what I miss in character I don't miss in tuneups, crappy tires, crappy brakes, gas mileage.  I wanted a Grabber Blue Mustang since I saw my first one, 1970 Boss 302.  I finally have a Grabber Blue Mustang.  Infinitely safer, more comfortable, just as stylish.  Had I had that 1970 Mustang I would have had 335hp (supposedly) and got 8-10 mpg if I feathered the gas.  Now I have 420hp and without trying or thought I get just under 23 mpg.  I've seen 29 mpg on a trip from Reno to Bend, OR.  300+ miles, two lane hwy the whole route, kept it below 65mph.  I miss character but that's all.

Edited by The Junkman

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2 hours ago, Casey said:

Yes, there is. You just have to resist adding options, trim packages, etc.

$28,295.00 in 2018 had the same buying power as $4,074.54 in 1969

Annual inflation over this period was about 4.03%

Thanks for taking the time to prove me wrong.  <_<  The list price for my truck was $2,150.

Look at all that plastic....

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One cool thing about some of today's cars is that fuel efficient engines can have good horsepower. My V-6 Chrysler has 300 HP, and is plenty peppy.

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I miss the fact that a "regular guy" like myself could afford a "HOT" ride back in the day. Most of the new stuff is out of my reach.

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21 hours ago, BeakDoc said:

I miss the ease with which an older car could be worked on. You didn’t need a Masters in engineering with a Bachelors in computer science or some nine gajillion dollar specialized tool. I miss the leaded gas smelled. I miss the way a big block V8 sounded without being siphoned through a catalytic converter. But most of all, the two things I miss the most, are vent windows and having the dimmer switch in the floor.

This!

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The first car I encountered with the dimmer switch on the stalk was a 1974 Pontiac Grand Prix.  The car was very nice, but the dimmer switch threw me off for a bit!! LOL

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I miss doing my own work.

Time was, you could tune an engine with a screwdriver and a timing light. And sometimes you didn't need the timing light.

Now that I have a dead-reliable car, I've gotten out of the habit of car working on.

As everyone probably knows, it's a different world now. Cars are smoother, faster, safer and more fuel-efficient.

But I do miss the sensation of being pinned back in the seat when you floored it.

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OPTIONS !  Yes , options . Not stupid packages ( which are a separate entity from axle packages of the old days ) . 

Ever attempt to order a vehicle to your (reasonable) specs ? Impossible !  When I bought my 2013 Civic , I wanted leather interior . Why ? MUCH easier to keep clean than cloth ! So , I wanted a Civic coupe in Alabaster Silver with the beige / buckskin leather interior ( trust me , you want lighter-coloured interior in the southwest U.S. ! ) ; but , alas , that interior was only available with dime-a-dozen white ! STUPID ! So , I had to settle for cloth charcoal / black / grey interior with the silver exterior .

Additionally , I positively HATE tyre pressure monitors !!!! Just another obnoxious warning light on the already too-busy instrument clustre .  

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11 hours ago, Snake45 said:

PREACH IT, Brother Oldcarfan! Can I get a AY-MEN from the choir?!B):lol:

That's why it's my post name, Love 'em and drive 'em!

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Posted (edited)

I felt old when my first car was a well used/abused 1973 Plymouth Duster for $450.  Now that buys two tires on the Pontiac G8.

At a recent car show with a new Lexus LC.......$11,000 buys you an option package?????

Lexus window sticker.JPG

Edited by HomerS

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Posted (edited)
24 minutes ago, HomerS said:

I felt old when my first car was a well used/abused 1973 Plymouth Duster for $450.  Now that buys two tires on the Pontiac G8.

At a recent car show with a new Lexus LC.......$11,000 buys you an option package?????

Lexus window sticker.JPG

Quite a bit more than the $28k adjustment for inflation quoted previously. But at least it ain't charcoal grey!

But I think I'd rather spend 110 large on something that's done depreciating - like a GTO or a Boss 302. I'd get more looks in those anyway.

Edited by Oldcarfan27

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This is a tough room. 

I don't miss floor mounted dimmer switches at all. Had a 68 Mustang from 1977-2001. Was a 302-4v with a toploader. 67-68 Mustangs also had a foot pump windshield washer. Back in the early days when this car was a daily driver, there were many times that my left foot had too much to do. Couldn't reach the parking brake with the shoulder harness on either.

Also owned a 67 Fairlane GTA, 68 Cougar XR-7, 70 Cutlass convertible. First new car was a "POS" Fox body Mustang that I put 180k fairly trouble free miles on before selling it and buying an E30 BMW.

My current daily is one of the import brands that gets hatred here. It is comfortable to drive and has a nice stereo for my commute. It is a 6MT. It is a hoot to drive on a twisty road. Car and Driver has it on their 10 best several times. Their test cars have turned mid 15 second quarter mile times. My trip computer is stuck at 34.2 mpg average. A good commute to work shows 40 mpg for the mostly freeway trip. Occasionally it is over 42. Has a timing chain. Needs nothing but oil service,  cabin and air filters until spark plugs at 75k. Probably wouldn't offer Bill G a ride because it is a bit small inside for anyone over 6'2" that is larger frame. No car is one size fits all.

Like most of us here, I love looking at and driving older cars. I have a soft spot for Mustangs, Novas, and GM A-bodies. Strangely, one of the reasons I like the A body is because with the right modifications they drive a lot "newer" than they really are. 

 

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I miss the ability to personalize your car for a minimum of cash, and the ease of doing so.  You could go to K-Mart and buy a set of chrome wheels for under $50.  Do that now and you'd probably void your warranty.

I also miss all the hoopla of introducing new cars in the fall.  Where I grew up all the dealerships were on the main drag, and in September they'd all rent huge searchlights and shine them into the night sky to advertise the new year's cars.  It was a big deal--lots of people in the show rooms, going from one to another, snagging brochures...it was an EVENT.  Now the only way you know the next year's cars are coming is when they start advertising sales on last years inventory.  Then they sneak in the new year's cars like they're ashamed of 'em.

I wouldn't want to drive a, say, '55 Chevy as a daily driver anymore, but nothing makes me turn my head almost completely around like spotting a classic car!!

 

 

 

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As my current (31 year old) daily driver is a bit on the low side compared to the plethora of taller SUV / crossover things roaming around now, I miss how the old cars did not have HID headlights that could just as easily double as aircraft landing lights. I can't remember a night within the last five or more years when I didn't have to flip my rear view mirror into the "save yourself from the brights" position at all.

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8 hours ago, Bucky said:

One cool thing about some of today's cars is that fuel efficient engines can have good horsepower. My V-6 Chrysler has 300 HP, and is plenty peppy.

That little 3.6l is a great engine, while it's a touch soft on off idle torque, once you get past 1500rpm, it's got torque everywhere and happily pulls to 7000rpm. My 200 has one in the same 283hp/260lb/ft tune and 6 speed auto transaxle as the Caravan/T&C and Journey but it only weighs around 3600lbs. Best part,  I was able to get a lower trim, low option car (Touring trim is just above the base LX, then had the optional 18"  rims and basic uConnect head unit), so it's on the lighter end of the spectrum for V-6 JS body 200 sedans.

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