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I spotted an (insert obscure car name here) classic car today!

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Comments

  • berriberri Posts: 3,996
    When I was a kid, you actually seemed to see more TR-3's than MG's on the road in the Chicago area. They were actually kind of popular there for awhile.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 32,886
    I am pretty sure my grandpa's car was just a 383. It replaced a 65 with a 383 that he loved - and instantly regretted selling, as the newer car was trouble-prone. He bought the new car on impulse, my grandmother still laughs at some of the issues it had (lots of stalling and hard to start).

    For obscure cars, I stopped to visit the fintail, and parked at the garage was a blue on blue Ferrari 328 GTS - has to be a rare combo.
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,626
    The TRs were faster!
  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 1,540
    Something's not right about that story, Berri. The 413 went out of production in 1965, while the fuselage cars didn't come along until 1969.

    2011 Buick Regal Turbo, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,577
    Maybe he meant the 440? Most of those fuselage Newports used a 383-2bbl, but at some point the 400 replaced the 383.

    I briefly owned a 1967 Newport hardtop with a 383-2bbl. For whatever reason, they screwed with the tuning that year, and it only had something like 270 hp. I think it had 290 the year before, and for '68 it jumped back up, but for whatever reason, the '67 was a bit weak.

    While not very fast, it was adequate, at least.
  • berriberri Posts: 3,996
    edited July 2013
    Yeah, Andre is right. It was a police interceptor 440. That sucker took up a lot of real estate under the Newport's hood. Sorry about my mess up there ab, and thanks Andre! The rest of that story is as his father told us and if you drove by any Mopar plants in the late 60's and 70's you'd often see car production parked all over the place including vacant fields. Another Chrysler story; when I was in business school, one of the professors consulted with them on management efficiencies and NC equipment. They were having a problem where sometimes the NC messed up and a car came off the line with mixed Plymouth and Dodge pieces. Evidently, sometimes it was actually cheaper (or at least easier) to crush it for scrap than mess with all the union rules reworking it. One of the students in that class with me had worked summers in that plant and verified what the professor said. Kind of astounding really.
  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 1,540
    I don't know about the crush-vs-repair story, though it wouldn't surprise me. I know that such "Frankenstein" cars were sometimes donated to vocational schools to let auto mechanics students work on them. But the sales bank story is true. It was devised by Chrysler's Lynn Townsend, an accountant who ran the company through the 1960s into the mid '70s. Under accounting rules, they made the cars, somehow recognized them as sold to artificially fluff up revenues on the books, and then stored them all over Greater Detroit. Naturally, the longer they sat, the more they deteriorated, not a wise move. Allpar has the following story:

    "Possibly the biggest mistake Mr. Townsend made in his career at Chrysler was the “sales bank.” It was created by him, and carried on by his protégé and successor, John J. Ricardo. Both men were accountants and had come to the auto industry convinced that business methods were more important to success in the auto industry than product knowledge.

    The general practice in the auto industry had been to produce cars based on dealer orders. That meant that production would follow demand. However, at Chrysler, “automobiles poured out of the Highland Park and Hamtramck plants like homeless waifs,” according to Brock Yates in his book The Decline and Fall of the Auto Industry.

    During the spring and summer of each model year, vehicles would be overproduced, and then stored for later sales. All over Detroit, at giant parking lots that included the Michigan State Fairgrounds on Woodward Avenue, those cars were stored. By the time later summer arrived, the sales and accounting staffs would be trying to unload surplus automobiles in any way possible. That included fire sales to leasing agencies and rental car fleets, registration transfers to Corporate Zone offices, sales contests and giveaways. But the primary method was to lean on dealers.

    Zone managers would call dealers and demand that they take more cars. They exercised their leverage, according to an interview that Yates had with an anonymous Chrysler-Plymouth dealer, based on fear, coercion, and pressure. Without the zone managers being in the car dealer’s corner, specially ordered cars might get “lost,” warranty claims wouldn’t get processed, parts inventories might slip and truckloads of unwanted and hard-to-sell color combinations and body styles might show up at the store.

    The dealers didn’t want the sales bank cars since many were poor quality or made with poor options choices. But they took them and sold them, as they could."

    2011 Buick Regal Turbo, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,442
    this morning on the way to work I got passed by a black aero Fox body Mustang LX 5.0 and black GN. The GN had some nice paint on it.
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,067
    edited July 2013
    Sad that Lynn Townsend will be remembered for that blunder. His biography reads like a Horatio Alger novel:

    Lynn Townsend

    Can't find much information about his successor John J. Riccardo.
  • berriberri Posts: 3,996
    On the surface this produce all out and sell later concept seems really dumb. I don't really know, but I wonder if Chrysler did this to try and gain manufacturing efficiencies to better compete on cost and price with GM and Ford? They were a considerably smaller company in comparison during the time frame and it was obvious by then what volume disadvantage did to many of the Independents?
  • toomanyfumestoomanyfumes S.E. Wisconsin Posts: 892
    Interesting article, good history.
  • wevkwevk Posts: 178
    I’m behind the wheel of one of the rarest and most desired Porsches ever made, the 550 Spyder. The sensuous curves of the tiny two-seat convertible are unmistakable as the model driven by James Dean when he met his death on a California highway in 1955.
    Only this Spyder is a fake. Or more precisely, a facsimile. Porsche itself has nothing to do with the car. Its maker, Prospect, Connecticut-based Spyder Creations, says that it is officially a kit car, albeit one that costs between $320,000 and $470,000.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-08-01/repro-320-000-porsche-550-spyder-weaves- -through-curves.html
  • jljacjljac Posts: 649
    edited August 2013
    I took this image at the James Dean crash site and spot on the 50th anniversary of his accident, Friday Sept 20, 2005. The image of my 1955 Studebaker Commander taken that day is what led me to this site. link title
    image
  • texasestexases Posts: 5,423
    Neat car, but I'd be putting that $320k-$470k into something else, car-wise.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,442
    edited August 2013
    PT Barnum has a pretty well known saying. He was born in Connecticut. Maybe there is some connection.
    Today, I saw a black MX-3 and a sliver Mark 8.
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,067
    What was the car James Dean's Porsche collided with? I think it was a 1946 Ford.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 32,886
    A 46-48 Ford convertible just drove by, black, lowered, wide whites, sounded mean.

    The James Dean crash was with a 50 Ford.
  • A Porsche 912 engine? Wheezy old thing. For $470K, you'd expect some serious horsepower.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 32,886
    I could get a couple of real Speedsters for the upper end of that - and they'll hold their value and maybe even appreciate.
  • jljacjljac Posts: 649
    edited August 2013
    Here are a few more images from Cholame, CA on September 30, 2005. The Porsche was a stealth car that blended in with the pavement and was hard to see at dusk. There are now warning signs to turn your lights on before the James Dean Memorial Intersection. I post three images but only two show up.
    image

    image
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