Tuesday, June 30, 2009
The 98's story began in 1941 with the introduction of Oldsmobile's premium full-size model, the Series 90. The two models in the 90 series were the 96 (straight-six powered) and 98 (straight-eight powered). As V8 engines became more popular in the postwar years, the 98 continued production with a V8.
This '61 Ninety-Eight appears to be the Luxury Sedan body style, which has a roofline similar to a Cadillac six-window sedan of the same era. But there, the similarities to the Cadillac end. The Olds has an entirely differently sculpted and styled body devoid of exaggerated fins. Instead, the 98 has a pointed rear end with small round taillights and a body design that resembles a rocket. Nearly everything on the car is inspired by rockets, fighter jets, turbines, air intakes, what have you. This was the sixties, after all.
Monday, June 29, 2009
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Monday, June 22, 2009
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Friday, June 19, 2009
This Lark Cruiser really is nice. Studebaker gave the Lark a faux Mercedes grille that lasted until 1963 (1964 models had an entirely different front-end treatment with a trapezoidal grille that, in my opinion, wasn't as attractive). This car may have some extra trim on it, since I've never seen another Lark that had both a chrome hood ornament and chrome spears on top of the front fenders. This car is also equipped with the 289 cubic-inch "R-1" V8 from the Avanti sports car, producing 240 horsepower. To put things in perspective, a standard 289-powered '64 1/2 Mustang produced 210-220 hp. A relatively small sedan like the Lark Cruiser coupled with that kind of power could scoot to 60 mph in 10 seconds. That's a tick quicker than a 1967 Camaro with the 327 V8. Not too shabby.
Thursday, June 18, 2009
The Plymouth Horizon and its twin, the Dodge Omni, were introduced in 1978 as two of Chrysler's entries into the bustling compact car market. Like most compacts of the time, they weren't the best-built cars. But they were pioneers in their market segment, as some of the first successful domestic front-wheel-drive small cars in the US and an important step in returning Chrysler to profitability in the '80s.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
What's cool about a car like this is it gets driven regularly. And because it gets driven, it isn't concours, but it still looks really nice from about 20 feet away. And it's a Mercedes, too, so its 50-year-old straight-six is probably bulletproof mechanically.
Eagle-eyed viewers will notice that the front license plate changed between photo shoots, which were several months apart. The custom-painted California front plate was replaced with what appears to be an actual 2004 Aruba license plate. One happy island indeed.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
This Corolla has had a rough life. I've seen some old Toyotas in the city that looked really clean for their age. This isn't one of them. It has body damage and rust from decades in SF traffic and living in salt air. What makes it notable though, is the fact that it's a mid-70s Toyota that's still running. San Francisco isn't kind to old cars, so most drivers would have junked a '76 Corolla and bought a new car by now. I suppose for some people, it's worth more to have a cheap and relatively efficient old car that can be bumped and scraped without much fear of decreasing its value than it is to have the green cred of a shiny new Prius.
pink Pacer. It's a 1978 AMC Pacer wagon. And even if it weren't pink it would still get noticed like a ... giant wide pregnant roller skate fishbowl thing.