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  • parmparm Posts: 723
    Careful! The '67 Colony Park station we had when I was kid had the fake wood paneling. So, I have a soft spot in my heart for that particular feature. ;) Hey, we were at the epitome of style . . . . . . . . . . . in 1967.

    BTW, today I saw a photo of '67 S-55 fastback coupe. Pretty cool car. The article I read on this car said that in '67, they quit making them about as soon as the production line started. The result? If you have one, it's a rather rare car.
  • grbeckgrbeck Posts: 2,361
    What I've noticed is that with GM cars, as you went up the totem pole in price and prestige, workmanship and build quality improved. Not so much with Fords (except for Lincolns) or Chrysler products. In the 1960s, anyway, there was still a visible difference between a Buick or an Oldsmobile and a Chevrolet.

    If anything, at Chrysler, the Valiant and Dart were probably the best products!

    It also seems as though Chevrolets after 1964 show a decline in build quality.

    As for how Chryslers compare to Fords - in the old Popular Mechanics "Owners' Reports," it seems as though a larger percentage of Mopar owners complained about sloppy workmanship and build quality than Ford owners did, especially after 1965.
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,120
    ...looking at 1960s Pontiacs show there was a big leap in quality from Chevrolet. Too bad more recent Pontiacs don't exhibit this quality. Some Pontiac interiors look worse than those of Chevies. A Grand Am I rented two years ago exhibited abominable quality and made me wonder why one would prefer it over a Chevy.

    Per the 1965-66 Chevrolets, didn't they have some kind of problem with the motor mounts? I seem to recall my Uncle Charlie having some kind of front suspension problems with his 1965 Impala. Still, the 1965 full-size Chevrolets were beautiful cars. My favorite Chevrolet is the 1970 Impala/Caprice which uses the same platform as the 1965 model.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,416
    Oh, you just brought up my FAVORITE factory defect!

    Yes, the Chevy V-8 motor mount defect was DIABOLICAL.

    If the mount broke "just right", the engine would fall slightly to the right, yanking out out the power brake vacuum hose, resulting in the feeling of a very hard pedal and hardly any brakes; THEN (wait, it gets better!) if the engine fell further, it would lay on the steering arm, resulting in locked steering.

    THEN (yeah, it gets better than that!) as the engine was falling to bind the steering arm, it would PULL THE THROTTLE OPEN....

    So you had no brakes, no steering and a floored gas pedal.

    Is that sweet or what? You couldn't PLAN to kill anyone better than that. :P


  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,849
    You could still throw the thing into neutral and turn off the ignition, right? Small consolation if you're headed towards a brick wall, I guess. It'd be REALLY scary though, if it took all that out, too! I remember some bad Fox made for tv movie awhile back, called "Runaway Car" or something like that, where that happened to a girl in a Ford Maverick. It was so bad it was funny! There was also an episode of "CHiPs", where some guys in a '64 Olds or something like that got an attitude because a nerd in a little Japanese car blew past them and shouted "Get a skateboard, you'll go faster!" They went after him and, conveniently, the throttle stuck, the brakes went out, the gearshift locked in drive, etc, and they went on a path of carnage that took out a whole slew of then-worthless 60's cars.

    would the engine mount on the '65 Chevy tend to fail catastrophically right away, taking out the steering, brakes, and throttle at the same time, or would it be a gradual thing? So perhaps, if you knew what to look for, you could catch it before it got scary?

    My '68 Dart crushed the engine mount on the passenger side twice. The first time, the engine dropped far enough that it interfered with the steering, and one of the grease nozzles actually ripped the exhaust pipe off. It fell down onto the steering, and made it bind up a bit. It's been ages now so my memory's a bit fuzzy, but I think I was still able to turn left normally, but it really hindered my ability to make a sharp right turn.

    The second time it did it, I caught it before it got too bad. It was just starting to scrape.

    **Edit: turns out that Olds 88 was a '63. I guess you really can find everything on the internet!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,416
    I think the mount failure was pretty much all at once, but it didn't always result in all three component failures, no. Sometimes the throttle would just feel funny and that was your tip off, or sometimes the engine would just jump up and smash the hood.

    The "fix" was a clamp over the mount, so that WHEN it broke, the engine couldn't move too far.


  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,603
    It wasn't often that all three of those things happened at the same time but it was certainly a bad design. the "fix" was a cable that strapped the engine into the engine bay. 1965 wasn't the best year for Chevrolet. Besides broken motor mounts, they handled like crap, wore out ball joints and rusted under the vinyl tops that were so popular at the time.

    Even in California, they would rust out by the rear windows.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,849
    IIRC, 1965 ended up being a record sales year for the auto industry as a whole, so no doubt quality was slipping as they rushed the cars out the factory door as quickly as they could. Ironically, quality was the marketing buzzword of the day in 1965, with manufacturers touting "we're going all out to win you over this year. All out", et. al. Consumer Reports, in their 1965 auto issue, took each brand to task with their slogans, by printing them and then listing all the sample defects that CR found in their test cars. As I recall, Pontiac came up one of the worst with regards to defects.

    It seems like GM tended to roll their sheetmetal thinner with each redesign back in those days, so perhaps that made the '65's more rust-prone than the earlier models? I guess '65 was also a rough year in general for quality, since there was so much out there that was all-new. With the exception of Imperial and perhaps Lincoln, all the Big Three standard sized cars were all-new. Plus, there was the Mustang, Gen II Corvair, and a heavily revised line of Mopar intermediates. It must have been really exciting at the time, seeing that much all-new stuff appear at once. I don't think there's ever been as much of an "All New" year since then.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,416
    Well the Mustang and the GTO were exciting, the Riviera was still getting some buzz...I don't think Mopar was yet in its prime---that would be a few years down the road. The focus was definitely on the intermediates and sporty coupes that's for sure. Lincolns were the same odd-balls then as they are now and Cadillac was just putting along in a bit of a rut.

    The gen II Corvair was a lovely car, but it was already doomed.

    Then of course there was the fabulous E-Type Jaguar, which was THE car to own, and which was really top dog in the eyeball department in 1965.


  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,849
    Yeah, but in 1965, big cars were where it was at. That was the bread and butter of the market, and anything else was a niche product in comparison. Heck, Chevy probably sold more Impalas that year than anybody else save Ford division sold in their entire car lineup! And that's JUST Impalas. There was the Caprice, Bel Air, and Biscayne on top of that.

    1965 was also the year that Mopar got serious about offering big cars again, and they definitely benefitted from it. Chrysler finally got off that small 122" wheelbase which was where a Dodge really belonged, while Plymouth offered its first full-sized car since 1961, while Dodge greatly expanded their full-sized lineup.

    About the closest thing we'd get these days to another 1965 would probably be if the Big 2.5 all redesigned their full-sized trucks and a new Camry and Accord all got released in the same year.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,416
    Perhaps but if there was great variety, it was the variety of mediocrity. Once you took away the a) horsepower and b) the chrome from an American car in 1965, all you had was basically a 1935 car that was bigger and went faster.

    Very few cars of that time were technically interesting. Just the same old ladder frames, pushrods, under-braked and over-steered.

    This is why muscle cars were so appealing. It was all about the engines. Those big blocks brought some excitement to domestic cars.


  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,849
    Perhaps but if there was great variety, it was the variety of mediocrity. Once you took away the a) horsepower and b) the chrome from an American car in 1965, all you had was basically a 1935 car that was bigger and went faster.

    Well, you're trying to look at it from a modern day technical/engineering perspective, rather than a mass-market, mindset of the typical person ready to buy a car perspective of the time. If you tried to tell someone in the market for a new car in 1965 that there was really nothing new there, they'd look at you like you done lost yer mind!

    Name one domestic car, other than Imperial, that still used a ladder frame in 1965. Okay, maybe Studebaker as well. Weren't the Larks and Daytonas basically just 1953-vintage Studes underneath those boxier bodies? Just about everything else by that time was either unit-bodied or perimeter-framed. Ladder frames just weren't well suited to the more low-slung cars that the public demanded in the 60's. Oddly though, with the fattening and aging of the driving population, ladder-framed vehicles would be more suitable these days! As upright as most modern cars are, you could slip a ladder frame up under there and probably nobody would even notice!

    How many 1935-era cars had automatic transmissions, power steering, power brakes, air conditioning, etc? Hell, how many of them even had oil filters!

    As for the chrome, again, you're looking back through modern eyes. To the eyes of the typical 1965 car buyer, those new cars WERE chrome free compared to what came before!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,416
    yes but "mass market appeal" is not what collectibles and classics are all about.

    The Model T had a planetary transmission, just about one torque converter away from being an automatic transmission---VERY close in design. Power steering was on trucks in the 1930s (late) and A/C in 1941.

    This is not new stuff.

    I think it is the very simplicity of American iron that makes it so appealing today in the collector car market.

    Not only can you overpay at Barrett-Jackson, but you have the consolation of being able to fix it yourself once you get it home and notice all the things you failed to notice on the auction block.


  • merckxmerckx Posts: 565
    One sold for about $27,000...usually,i have zero interest in cloned cars...But this little "Porsche" looked perfect...really pretty silver paint. The commentators went on about vw versus porsche power.....Would a vw engine give it a much more "putt-putt' nature? Even the porsche would be pretty low power.....Would engive choice matter that much(other than value,of course)?

    Has anyone driven one of these cloned Speedsters?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,416
    They are okay---you can build up a VW engine to be much more powerful than a Porsche 4 cylinder---but it doesn't have the durability. VW engines are very cheaply made and when you stress them, they hand-grenade.

    The cloned Speedsters drive fine and are pleasant but they feel and sound nothing like the original IMO....for one thing, the interiors feel all wrong and look all wrong--but they do come with lots of amenities.

    Certainly fun for the money, but don't ever expect them to appreciate and you can plan on 60,000 mile engine rebuilds.


  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,603
    " They are ok"

    That's how I feel about them. Nothing like the real thing but they do look nice and are, no doubt more sensible to own.

    The worst ones are the Model A Shay Mickey Mouse cars with the Pinto engines. I guess they have their fans too.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,416
    Sure, there's a fan for every car. At least VW and Porsche have a shared history and, way back when, even a shared parts bin, so a replica using VW power makes a certain amount of sense. But make a front-engined American flathead automobile into a rear-engine VW is pretty strange. You lose configuration, history, sound, power, behavior--the entire concept is violated. It makes no sense to me. It's almost like putting a cardboard cutout in front of your car.


  • gussguss Posts: 1,181
    A Porsche Speedster will still look good a hundred years from now. Even a replica can still be a handsome car if done right.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,416
    True but so few are done right, and those are always the most expensive. Replicas seem to be like car models. The less you pay, the less accuracy you get. Also it seems the more noble the car they try to replicate, the more awful the result.


  • Some bonehead just paid 98 k for a '57 Vette. Add 10% and transport to it. These guys buy high then need money and sell at a loss. B-J is a total ripoff and who is the Steve "Mr. Cool" with the sunglasses? Is he blind?
This discussion has been closed.