I have always been a car nut which, I guess is a reflection of my generation. My father taught me to drive in 1954 when I was nine years old, and I have been hooked since then.
My high school years were filled with adventures in my parents' 1955 Buick, 1960 Ford, 1962 Falcon, and 1962 Ford Fairlane.
My college years were spent driving Great White Charger that was an old beat up 1960 Ford, Burgandy Brute that was a 1962 Buick convertible, and my mother's 1966 Thunderbird.
Below you'll see pictures of most of the cars I have owned.
This is a 1961 Buick LaSabre convertible. My mother bought me this car my senior year in college. It had rusted out floorboards and needed a new top. I repaired the floorboards and replaced the carpet with a high quality wool carpet that I found at a remnant store. Those old Buicks were great cars.
This 1967 MGB was the first car I bought and paid for with my own money. The 1967 was the last model that was issued before all of the federal safety regulations changed the MGB from a true English sports car with all the necessary foibles to the padded-up, impotent car it became.
It was a great car for a young, single man in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, and I really enjoyed it.
In 1969, I somehow got the idea that I needed more luxury - especially air conditioning as I was living in Southern Florida - so that caused the purchase of this Chevelle Malibu. It was a really nice car, very fast, but it could sure guzzle the gasoline. It was the car that pulled my little rental trailer of possesions when I moved to Maryland.
My strange desire to economize and simplify my life was reflected in this 1971 Ford Pinto. It was actually a pretty good car that gave me no trouble. I was even rear-ended in it on the way to work, but the collision wasn't very big so it did not explode. Its engine did catch on fire one time, but that was because a mechanic connected a gasoline line incorrectly.
I kept my Pinto until 1975 when I bought this Audi Fox. It was very comfortable and handled really well and would go forever on a tank of gas. Its biggest problem was the "factory" air conditioning that just happened to be installed by the dealer. I'm sure they knew how to do it better at the actual factory.
The mid 70's was my disco period. I enjoyed living the "high life" so decided to purchase a car that would better suit my lifestyle. Thus, the arrival of my 1976 Fiat Spyder. It was definitely a Fiat! All of the dashboard wiring caught on fire shortly after I bought it. This "headache" was the most fun to drive of any car I have ever owned.
After three years, just about everything possible broke or fell off of my Fiat, so I decided to go American. This 1979 Pontiac Grand Prix was a beautiful car but just about as much hassle as the Fiat. I made the mistake of getting four-on-the-floor that caused the thing to lurch and jerk because of all of the emission controls on the car. It had a T-Top which was great except the car would fill up with water whenever it rained, and I was parked on a hill.
In the early 80's, Chrysler Corporation brought back the great American convertible, and I just had to have one. You cannot believe all of the stares and comments I got when driving this 1982 Dodge 400 convertible. It was a very well built car but extremely under-powered. This was the only car I have ever owned that had trouble going up hills, but the fact that the top went down made up for a lot of weaknesses.
My friend, Dinah, and I were out and about one fine day in 1984 when I saw this Dodge Conquest and fell in love. I bought it on the spot. It was the fastest car I have ever owned. It really flew. Shortly after I got it, I was sitting at a stoplight next to a Corvette when I noticed the driver was indicating that he wanted to race. I left him in the dust!
I literally outgrew my Conquest when I got my beloved Great Dane, Gideon. He finally got so big that it was beginning to be a problem stuffing him into the back of the car. I purchased a 1988 Oldsmobile Toronado which handled fairly well even thought it was extremely luxurious. It had a fine, big backseat for Gideon. An interesting side note is that the Toronado was the first car I had ever driven before I bought it. For some reason, I never took a picture of that car, but it was black and beautiful.
After Gideon died at a very early age, I was without a dog and decided to try out a Mazda Miata. It only took driving it less than a mile for me to become passionate about it. The one I drove was white, but I really wanted silver which was a fairly rare color for Miatas in 1991. I finally found one at a dealer west of Baltimore. The entire deal including the trade-in of the Toronado was conducted on the phone. All I had to do was drive up there, sign the papers, and drive away in my silver Miata.
I couldn't live without the companionship of a dog but was unwilling to depart with my Miata, so my next two car purchases were "dog cars." I started with a 1990 Mitsubishi Mirage and then moved up to a 1993 Honda Accord station wagon. I don't have a picture of either, but they were both great dog cars.
In 1996, I had a total fit of stupidity and traded my Miata on a Saab 900 SE convertible. The Saab is a really nice car, but I'm really angry with myself for getting rid of that great little Miata - plus it was five years old and only had 25,000 miles!
I figure I'll have this Saab for a long, long time now that I'm retired and don't have the money to throw away on cars.
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My wonderful Saab was getting a bit long in the tooth at thirteen years old and 131,500 miles, so I ventured into the auto shopping world and bought a 2005 Mercedes-Benz CLK 500 Cabriolet - guess I found a little more money to throw away on a car. Below are some pictures from the dealer.
I really enjoyed my CLK 500, but when Christmas 2017 rolled around, I found a great deal on an E 350. I’m not getting any younger so decided to give myself a present. I’m greatly impressed by the handling of this new toy.