Best era for cars? Now!


Remember that song they used on the 1960’s All in the Family tv show? “Gee our old LaSalle ran great” … lol … I happened to see a vintage LaSalle, I think it was a 1938 model, at a place that sells classic cars a month or two ago. It’s a pretty good looking car. And seems to be very roomy . Looked a lot like this one.



Can you imagine what it took to form those body panels like that back in the day?


Speaking of uggos. Yesterday a faded red Pontiac Aztec pulled into the parking lot. I quickly looked away lest I turn to stone.


One of my all time favorites. Of course, in fairness it should be noted that this was not exactly a common sight even back in 1937. :wink: In fact the one you posted is a one-off 135 MS Special Roadster that was modified specifically for a '37 car expo.

Here’s another period one-off that always draws a crowd; the 1938 Phantom Corsair:

One of the earliest cars to have shaved door handles with electrically-actuated latches. Also one of the first cars to have a “door ajar” warning. And one of the only cars to have ever come with an altimeter. :smiley: I suppose that’s apropos because Lycoming built the engine.

Seats 6 in a 4+2 configuration. The back seat is so narrow because the booze cabinets take up the extra room. :wink:


A wooden buck, a lotta hammers, and English wheel and welders to close up the panel wraps. That takes very skilled hand work!


Yes it is! Good catch. Built for the 1936 Paris Auto Salon. Sold to the ambassador from Brazil to France as a daily driver.

It is on display at the Rev’s Institute in Naples Florida. I get to see it every time I volunteer. :grinning:


That’s all metal and formed to perfection. No epoxy body fillers to get those graceful curves.
Yes, they were craftsmen back then. Now they are assemblers…


Do they ever work the retractable windshield? I’d love to see that mechanism in action.


In addition to great skill, from what I hear/read, a LOT of lead was also used


I have not seen the windsheild in action. Top up and down but not with the windsheild retracted. If I see it down, I will post a picture. It fits the cowl so tightly you would never guess it retracts!


Solder was used to fill in joints on body panels so that the joint was invisible. Cars with modified steel bodies are often called lead sleds. Chopping, channeling, and frenching require lead to make the joints invisible after the work is done, hence the name.


Re: Unexpectedly high traffic accident death rate in 2015 and 2016

The reason stated in the Fortune article above is texting and speeding. But people were texting and speeding in 2014 too. I doubt those activities explain the reason for the substantial increase in traffic related deaths. There must be other factors.


Don’t discount the role of drugs and alcohol. In the aftermath of the bloodbath in Times Square yesterday, it appears that the driver (previously twice-arrested for DWI) had smoked PCP before he decided to drive at high speed along the sidewalk, and mow-down pedestrians.



Drugs and booze were a problem decades before texting came along.


I would add the proliferation of infotainment systems as a recent cause of distracted driving.


Looks a little like my neighbors chopped 51 Ford back in the 50’s. I remember as a kid reading the Hot Rod magazines and seeing all the how to articles on customizing. Lead, lead, lead. Then 3M got the hot idea to make body filler (maybe Dupont beat them to it). A lot better than that old Black Magic junk and you didn’t go nuts like a mad hatter from the lead fumes.


I leased cars my wifes last car because I am not convinced the 10 year window of no expensive car repairs these days does not seem probable, many expensive electronics,cvt, sealed transmissions etc. Double standard my next car will be a used purchase but not a new fangled machine, crown vic or whatever.


I’ve never been in favor of leasing for personal use, but that 2017 Malibu boat I had for a loaner leases for something like $159 a month with maybe $3000 down. I don’t know what the warranty is but they are starting to get smart and extend the 36 months to 60. Even my 86 Park Ave. had a 50K warranty. I know its a trap but still pretty cheap if you don’t drive more than 10K a year.


I am always thinking against the wind in the cars I found appealing in a certain time period. When I was eight years old, the year was 1949. The manufacturers introduced their new post war designs. My favorite car was the Nash with its Airflyte® design. My choice of cars when I was driving age was the 1957-58 Studebaker Scotsman. I had begun working on cars and the Scotsman was very serviceable​. Also, a Scotsman with the Borg-Warner overdrive could get 30 mpg on the highway.
When I was in a position to buy a new car in the mid 1960s, I really liked the shape of the 1965-66 full size Ford. Unfortunately, I couldn’t make a deal with the Ford agency.
Now that I am a geezer, I have given up on cars. I like sitting upright, so I stick with minivans and SUVs. Consumer Reports ran a test back in 1992 comparing the Oldsmobile​ 88, the Mercury Grand Marquis, the Buick Roadmaster and a 1952 Buick Roadmaster. While the 40 year old.Buick didn’t handle, brake, or accelerate as well as the under test, CR said that the 40 year old Buick had the most comfortable seats and driving position and the most back seat room.
I think we have lost something in comfort in today’s cars.