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Strange Cars from the past...



  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,116
    ...but I think my high school's driver's ed car was a beige 1981 Chevrolet Malibu Classic.
  • bhill2bhill2 Posts: 1,330
    When I was in high school in the mid '60s our school decided that it should teach students who were interested how to drive those 'new' 4-on-the-floor transmissions. The local Ford dealer supplied a brand-new Fairlane sport coupe with a 289 and a 4-speed. Sweet Jesus that car was fun to drive. It would have been even more fun if we could have jettisoned the teacher, but he was actually a pretty good guy.

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

  • grbeckgrbeck Posts: 2,361
    ...was a 1978 Dodge Aspen sedan.

    My father took me out for driving lessons in his 1973 AMC Gremlin.

    The late 1970s were not a good time, automotive wise.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,500
    My drivers ed car was a brand new 1993 Dodge Spirit, it had like 1000 miles on it. My school had another drivers ed car as well, a ca. 1980 Ford Fairmont, power blue, and a rep for stalling. I was very glad I got to drive the new car!
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,847
    ...but I think my high school's driver's ed car was a beige 1981 Chevrolet Malibu Classic

    Lemko, you're not getting your past mixed up with that movie "Moving Violation", are you? :P They used beige '81 Malibu sedans as the driver's ed cars in that movie. As I recall, one of them got stalled out at a railroad crossing on the tracks, with a train coming. The students got it pushed off the tracks just in time, only to roll it out into an intersection where it got smacked by a semi...

    As for me, I took driver's ed in a 1986 Cutlass Ciera sedan. I remember making a comment that they should have given us '72 Impalas so that it wouldn't matter as much when we banged them up. My instructor was not amused. :P
  • texasestexases Posts: 5,510
    Our were '74 era 4-door LeSabres - talk about a boat!
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,500
    Moving Violations...hilarious.

    That movie is now on DVD, under $10. It's a good laugh, with lots of interesting old cars in it.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,500
    That's a drivers ed car from lemko-land.

    Around here there is a drivers school with a fleet of new Jettas, and another with xBs. I think school-sponsored programs are less common than in my day
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,847
    those outsided '71-76 Buicks are my favorites of the big cars from that mastodon era. I think part of it may be that some cheaper cars, like Fords, Mercurys, Chevie Pontiacs, and even those Royal Monacos with the hidden headlights were just too pretentious, pretending to be something they really weren't, while the Buicks just had a clean, smooth, understated look to them, and almost a bit sporty, for such a big car. In contrast, an Oldsmobile was a bit too conservative, while something like a Cadillac, Lincoln, or Chrysler/Imperial was almost too pompous and in-your-face with its opulence and status.

    I guess I like the fact that the Buicks were upscale and luxurious, but didn't scream "LOOK AT ME!".

    As for Driver's Ed, I've heard that they dropped the school sponsored programs around these parts years ago. I think I got through it just in time. I remember our instructor was some over-the-hill bodybuilder/gym teacher who was just starting to get man-boobs, and looked like he had been left out in the sun too long.

    One thing I'll never forget in Driver's Ed, was coming up to the stop sign at the exit to our school's parking lot. It let out onto a fairly major road, and the first thing I said was something I picked up from my mother... "Is it clear yet?". Mom tended to say that if she needed to pull out onto a road where she was at a bad angle, where I as a passenger could see better than she could. He just looked at me, a bit perturbed, and said "You tell me!"
  • texasestexases Posts: 5,510
    Jettas and xBs - quite a change. Our teacher's favorite thing with the Buick was to get us on a narrow, winding 2 lane, just to see how we'd do. His claim to fame, other than being the metal/woodshop teacher, was that he went to high school with Pete Rose, back when that was something to brag about...
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 27,621
    Western Hills High in Cincinnati... Don Zimmer also went there..

    I'm full of useless information.. :surprise:

    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • fezofezo Posts: 9,327
    Driver Ed. car - a 68 full size Ford.

    I don't remember as much as I might about that car if for no other reason I had been driving for a year already. The only reason I was taking driver ed was to lower the insurance rates. I figured my folks were footing the car and insurance at that point so it was the least that I could do.
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,116
    I remember looking through my Mom's old high school yearbook and they had a 1962 Chevrolet Impala as a driver's ed car. Imagine if it was an SS with a 409! Anyway, Grandpop taught her to drive on a 1961 Plymouth Valiant. The car in which my Dad taught me to drive was his 1978 Ford Granada coupe with the mighty 250-cid inline six.
  • fezofezo Posts: 9,327
    My older brother learned on a 61 Valiant! Wagon.

    I learned on a 67 Pontiac Tempest wagon.
  • toomanyfumestoomanyfumes S.E. Wisconsin Posts: 894
    Was "Moving Violations" that movie with Bill... No Brian-Doyle...No John Murray in probably his only movie? If that's it I saw it on cable the other night and the kids and I were cracking up.

    I took driver's ed in around 1982. We had all Chevy's. Chevette(yuck), Malibu's, and Caprice Classics. The Caprice's were nice.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,500
    Yep, John Murray - I don't think I have seen him in anything else either. Really, an underrated and pretty harmless movie, with a few really hilarious scenes.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,847
    For some reason, the only name I remember from that movie was Sally Kellerman. She was a "bad guy", either a crooked cop or judge or something like that.

    Oh, and Clara Peller. I loved that scene towards the beginning where her old lady friend who could barely see picked her up from the airport, somehow ends up out on the runway behind a big jet, and starts laying into the horn and hollering about "those damn buses!"

    There was another movie named "Moving Violation", too, that was a more serious movie about a drifter and a waitress who witness the crooked sherriff kill one of his deputies who wanted a bigger part of the graft. The thing was one car chase/smashup after another, and directed by Roger Corman, so it wasn't THAT serious.

    Interestingly, it had some of the same stunts done in Smokey and the Bandit, right down to a copcar running under a tractor trailer and losing its roof, and a '74 or '75 Delta 88 hardtop with an airbag crashing. The scene looked like it was set up specifically TO deploy the airbags, and it worked. In Smokey and the Bandit, they weren't successful. There, they ran a '74 Delta hardtop into a '77 LeMans, and about all it did was turn the LeMans into a pap smear, while the Delta might've gotten a scratch on its bumper! I read that sometime later, that same Delta was used in a crash test video, which DID deploy its airbags.

    I guess a Delta with airbags must've been pretty rare. I thought it was mainly the more expensive cars that used them, like 98's, Electras, and cars further up the totem pole? I wonder if any LeSabres ever got airbags?
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,500
    Yeah she was a crooked judge, in cahoots with a crooked cop (something Keach) who were plotting to auction the driving school students cars and keep the money. The movie also had Nedra Volz (the old lady friend), Jennifer Tilly and the sister from Back to the Future (cast as a hypochondriac who drove a Pinto), among others I can't immediately recall.

    If you recall, the old lady (Volz) drove an immaculate looking '67 Impala 4 door HT, the airport scene is pretty funny - "damn buses, always in the way" as she honks at a jetliner. There's a scene that takes place in an impound lot that is full of weird cars.

    Those airbag cars seem to be kind of haphazard....were they available on all large cars?
  • 210delray210delray Posts: 4,722
    Here are the '74-'76 GM cars with optional frontal airbags:

    Buick LeSabre, Electra, Riviera
    Olds 88, 98, Toronado
    Cadillac Deville, Fleetwood, Eldorado

    These were dual airbags that were designed to protect all 3 front seat occupants (the passenger airbag was huge). The cars did not have shoulder belts, just lap belts. It was thought at the time that airbags could replace shoulder belts.

    IIRC, about 10K cars were equipped with the option -- not a huge number, and you're probably correct in that the more expensive cars were more likely to have them.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    I was in a junkyard in the late seventies when some guys who were trying to remove something from the dash of a wrecked Buick of that vintage accidently set off the air bag.

    These guys had never heard of airbags, and they ran from the car screaming obcenities and shaking their heads which were full of white powder.

    I thought I knew every filthy word in spanish but I heard some new ones that day!
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