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What was your first car? What happened to it?



  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,496
    How much did you get out of the old heap again?

    I still own the first car that was ever registered to me. The first car I regularly drove - a 66 Galaxie, was registered to my parents as I was underage - but it was able to make me broke anyway.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,846
    I still own the first car that was ever registered to me. The first car I regularly drove - a 66 Galaxie, was registered to my parents as I was underage - but it was able to make me broke anyway.

    While it wasn't my first car, I still have one of the vehicles that I first practiced driving Granddad's '85 Silverado pickup. Back in those days, Mom would let me practice with her '80 Malibu, which she ultimately gave me and that became my first car. When she got her '86 Monte Carlo though, she wouldn't let me touch it! Ironically, years later, that car would get totaled under my ownership! :P Grandmom's '85 LeSabre was too "expensive", I guess, so they wouldn't let me drive it much, but Granddad never had a problem letting me drive the Silverado.

    It's funny how back then, the Silverado seemed fast, with its 305 V-8. And compared to the Malibu, my stepdad's '84 Tempo, and most of my friends' cars, it WAS fast! :blush: By today's standards, the thing is kind of a dog though.
  • fezofezo Posts: 9,326
    My dad had a 66 Fairlane 500 at one point so I remember 66 full sized Fords. Wouldn't mind one.

    The Mercedes went for $600 so we actually sold it for $350 more than we bought it for...
  • The first car I owned was a new 1972 Ford Gran Torino, purchased for $2,974.00
    I managed to save $800 towards the down payment. My parents managed the bank loan since I was only seventeen at the time. In 36 mos., I paid off the balance of the $2000 loan @ $61.39 per mo.

    My interest and knowledge of cars at the time was enormous. I managed to perform the majority of its maintenance: engine tune-ups, oil/filter changes, brake pad/shoe replacement, Trans. Service and other fluids etc. This all added up to a tremendous savings over the years in terms of cost of ownership and trouble "free" driving to boot.

    I had two minor accidents with it during the first eight years of ownership and that was it.
    When the Gran Torino was ten years old, I leased 1982 Volvo 240 series (not owned by Ford, then), but kept the Torino, it had a place in my heart and I did not want to sell it.
    From that time forward, I managed to drive it off and on and drove a 1984 Mustang GT during this period too for the next seven years, until 1989. The body on the Gran Torino eventually fell victim of time, mileage, and elements .

    In 1986, I decided to go hunting for another body and found a similar body type in the Ford/Mercury intermediate family, a 1975 Mercury Cougar XR7, paid $300 for basically a body w/blown engine(3512v) and (c4) transmission. Although, the engine/transmission transplant did not take place, until 1989, which was very simple. At this point, the engine and transmission both had about 225,000 miles. I drove the 1975 Cougar for another 90,000 miles or so before a collision in the L/R quarter panel by another Ford vehicle, a F-250 4x4 pick-up truck around 1991. The damage was not worth repairing so once again; I went on a search for another body. This time (with the help of a close friend) I found a 1976 Mercury Cougar XR7, paid $500 for a good body w/blown transmission. This car had about half the mileage of the first Cougar had. Once again, a transplant took place this time w/o original engine (302 2v/5.0L), which was originally from the Gran Torino (was given to a friend), and the original transmission (FMX) kept and rebuilt it to my satisfaction and installed behind the original 351W 2v/ 5.8L in the 1976 Mercury Cougar XR7. When it all boils down, the original transmission from the Gran Torino lived life in THREE vehicles.

    In addition, all, I can say from my experience is when a vehicle is properly maintained it will yield many years of reliable operation.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,496
    66 Fords are decent looking cars. My Galaxie got hit not long after I started driving. My dad knew of a guy who had an identical car, same color and all, tired, but straight, especially for a parts car. It ran and drove, but its 352 had seen better days and the interior was shot. We bought it, bought the wreck back from the insurance company for nothing, and set to putting it back together. The project ended there, as the first car was found to have a bent frame and it wasn't worth the hassle. We then sold the parts car and the wreck to a guy for twice what we had into it (the wreck had a strong 390-4bbl, which I am sure is what he was after). The adventure could have gone a lot worse, I suppose.

    Selling that old MB saved a fortune in the long run.
  • JostJost northeastPosts: 19
    First off, to fintail, that 300B was an incredible first car no matter how rough around the edges, sounds like you and your brother had great times with it! The poor condition and things that did'nt work we're simply personality! My first car as stated previously was the '63 Dodge. That only lasted about 6 months. My second car, and the one of real memory was a '68 Mustang fastback. I bought in 1970 for $1100. It had about 80K on the clock, was candy apple red, black interior, shelby side scoops and black 5 spoke Keystone wheels. It had a 289 V8, 2 bbl.carb and a 3 speed on the floor. I ended up switching in a 4 speed and put on a holley 2 bbbl carb, why I did'nt get manifold from a junk yard and bolt on a 4bbl I don't know. I loved that car, and kept it for several years, selling it and buying a 69 GTO. Of all of them, its the Mustang that I wish I'd kept,, and quite probably the one woth the most today.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,496
    I wish my first car was something as outrageous as a beater Adenauer - mine was a thirsty loud 66 Ford. Fezo had the Mercedes. My second car was an old MB however.

    That Mustang sounds like a looker and a mover.
  • fezofezo Posts: 9,326
    Yep. That was me with the Mercedes and yes it was everything you'd want even in its beater status. We had loads of fun making it look nicer (late 60s version of nicer.... you almost don't want to know...) and it was an absolute hoot. It was also the only four on the tree I've ever had and ever expect to have.

    Funny thing. A mechanic dad knew had this thing. Dad had just realized that with brothers that went to a Catholic high school twenty miles away and just two cars that he'd either have to pick them up more than he wanted to or at least lose a car to the errand. He says, "Steve, I've got a car to look at. If you'll pick up your brothers when they need it and you want this car I'll buy it." I took one look and told him to get out the checkbook. He tells me it's a stick which I knew. He must have known I wasn't good on a stick yet. I said "Trust me. I'll learn." On no time I was better on it than he was. I actually got the manual trans gene from my mom who didn't believe in automatics at all.

    Merry Christmas everyone!
  • fezofezo Posts: 9,326

    Here are some nice shots of one that got restored. It's a 53 rather than a 54 but it's the car! Mercedes Adenauer.

    Meanwhile, here's the one I had for maybe three months just prior to the Mercedes that my dad went and sold on me.... 56 Ford Fairlane. The one we had was exactly this car down to the colors. However by 1968 the paint job on it was shot so you have to imagine it in more pink and rather than red and black. It flew!
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,496
    You had the ultimate beater. A 53 and 54 will be identical. What color was yours?

    That "restored" car looks like a more cosmetic job...I wouldn't bet on that upholstery being accurate and it needs beauty rings, but it's still better than most Adenauers.

    I remember when I was a teenager a local used car lot had a very nice turquoise and white 56 Ford 4 door HT...wanted 4K for it, not an awful deal. The same guy also had an extremely nice 50 Pontiac sedan and a decent bullet nosed Studebaker coupe for the money. This dealer always had lots of oddballs...then he sold the place, and now the lot sells clapped out old police cars and rebuilt heaps :sick:
  • fezofezo Posts: 9,326
    You're right. The upholstery isn't right. When we got that thing it was largely rust but it was a deep red - like burgundy. Now, remember I warned you. This was 1968... We painted it that amazing yellow that Camaros were using at the time. Looked like a giant banana!

    The dealer that had the one I linked to is only about 60 miles from here and has some nice old stuff that I wouldn't mind... but I have to behave myself.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,496
    It was the 60s...people did what they had to do to get by :P

    IIRC Adenauers had two upholstery options - leather, and kind of a cord woolcloth - the latter of which is hard to find and very expensive. I suspect a full interior restoration on one of these, with wood and chrome included, could approach 10 grand in itself if done by a quality shop.
  • fezofezo Posts: 9,326
    I could believe that. What happened to us is we reached the point where it was get serious or give it up because it was eating us up in little mechanical things. Basically the time had come to do a real rebuild on the engine. Oh, well. We had some really fun years with that thing and what, with the coming of the 70s sooner or later we'd have had to pick another color....
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,496
    I'm guessing metalflake orange, puke green, or monkeycrap brown :P

    A good engine rebuild on one of those would probably 15 grand, too.
  • fezofezo Posts: 9,326
    That or maybe harvest gold....
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,116
    Shoot, I thought those 1965-66 full-size Fords were supposed to be "Quieter than a Rolls-Royce!" My girlfriend's first car was a 1966 Ford Galaxie 500 four-door sedan that used to be her Dad's car. It was a medium blue metallic with a black cloth and vinyl interior. Knowing how conservative her father was, it probably had a tepid V-8 - maybe even something like a 289.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,496
    Mine, with its 390-4bbl, dual exhaust with glasspacks, and 16 year old driver who liked to downshift simply for noise, defeated any engineering of the car :shades:

    I do remember it was a smooth cruiser though.
  • bhill2bhill2 Posts: 1,330
    Shoot, I thought those 1965-66 full-size Fords were supposed to be "Quieter than a Rolls-Royce!"

    I think Ford only made that claim for the LTD. Part of positioning that model as a 'premium' car.

    2009 BMW 335i, 2003 Corvette cnv, 2001 Jaguar XK cnv, 1985 MB 380SE (the best of the lot)

  • fezofezo Posts: 9,326
    About 1970 my dad started buying these company cars from State Farm where my uncle worked. They'd be a couple of years old and have about 50K on them. The first one was a 66 Fairlane. The one real memory of that was that there was no play in the wheel at all. If you sneezed you'd probably drive off the road. So just to show me I suppose the next one was a Ford Custom with no power steering. My goodness that took some real effort to turn!

    After that he got a 71 Galaxie 500 that was a nice car for what it was though you still had to steer it like that Fairlane.

    His next car was the best of that crop - a 72 Impala with a 350 in it. It was a god awful brown but a nice car to drive. Got my first speeding ticket in it.
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