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 CageYear BoughtAfter making the motorcycle list I thought I'd give a try at doing the same thing for my cars. This is going to be much harder since my memory of my cars isn't quite as vivid as that of my bikes. A work in progress..
1'48 Chrysler Windsor 1963 My first car! I bought this blue monster for $75 from my neighbor who had quite a used car business going on out of his garage. I didn't even have a drivers license at the time since I was only 16 and you had to be 17 in New Jersey. This one had the Spitfire 6 engine with Fluid Drive. The drive consisted of a traditional clutch hooked to a fluid coupling. The trans had a low and high range with two gears each for a total of 4. You didn't need to use the clutch at all. It would idle in gear but was really slow taking off due to the fact that the fluid coupling didn't have any of the torque multiplication a more modern torque converter had. Once you got going you would let off of the gas pedal and it would shift gears automatically via solenoids. For highway speeds you would need to shift manually to high range and it would shift automatically between the 2 high range speeds. I used to keep it parked on the street around the corner from my house. When my parents weren't looking I'd take it out for a spin. I put a lot of miles on this car even without the license :-) I ended up selling it for a small profit as I remember.
2'55 Oldsmobile 98 Convertible 1964 This was another $75 car from my neighbor. It had a bad starter so I had to park it on a hill and hope for the best. Mine was two tone green and white and smelled of dry rot inside :-) It had the Rocket V8 engine which was pretty fast for its day and burned gas like it was going out of style. I barely remember selling this one but do remember that I made something like $50 on it. I still don't think I had a license yet either :-)
3'57 Mercury Turnpike Cruiser1964 I bought this one based on a used car ad for something like $200. It was a real beauty in two tone blue and white as I remember. This thing actually burned more gas than the Olds did but its worst feature was the fact that it didn't have power steering! What were they thinking? You can't imagine trying to park it. I think I had a license by now. I remember selling it to an Armenian guy in Fort Lee, NJ. He subsequently decided he didn't want it and started harassing me by phone. He made the mistake of getting my Father on the phone one time which was the last time he called. You wouldn't have wanted to mess with my Dad!
4'60 Fiat 500 Binanchina1965 This was like going from one extreme to the other. Here we have a 500cc 2 cylinder engine putting out something like 20 hp and getting nearly 50 mpg. I always describe this car as the one the clowns pile out of at the circus. It was really small! I had a blast with it, though. My friends and I would pile 4 of us in there and going screaming around. It had a 4 speed and independent suspension. Not bad handling at all. One day I revved it up and popped the clutch which resulted in a snapped axle. The clutch also wore out not surprisingly which required removing the engine to replace it. During the winter if it got too cold out I would have to push it to get it started. The starter just wasn't strong enough to crank it over when the oil was like molasses. It sure was a lot of fun.
5'51 Mercedes 170Va1965 Now this one has a good story. I was riding my Puch motorcycle with my buddy Dick Toomayan in a deserted quarry in Englewood Cliffs, NJ one afternoon. We were riding two-up on dirt trails and crashed after missing a turn. Upon getting up we noticed a car that was kind of hidden among some trees. It had been there quite some time based on the vegetation boxing it in. We checked it out and the first thing we noticed was the MB star on the radiator cowl! WOW! It was in really good shape. Someone had applied Simonize paste wax but never buffed it out so the paint was protected. The interior was two-tone green and white leather in very good condition since whoever stashed it up there had coated the interior with what looked to be petroleum jelly. The wood door trim was a bit rough and the tires were dried out and flat but overall it wasn't too bad. We had to have it. It turned out the land was owned by a bus company who couldn't care less what happened to the car. So we dug it out and had it towed to my garage. I spent untold hours working on it. Just getting the wax off was a major project. I went to Mercedes Benz of North America to see if they would help me get parts for it. They were pretty intrigued by the car and offered to help. They found me a gasket set and rings plus everything else I needed to get it running again. With my Uncle's help I rebuilt the engine and actually got it going. Of course it didn't have any plates since I didn't have title to it so I just drove it up and down my driveway until that eventful day.. I couldn't stand it anymore so I slapped a couple of unmatched plates on it I had laying around the garage and started on it's maiden voyage around the block. I barely got to the end of my street and there was the local punk cop, Georgie Kirshbaum. "I've got you now, Parnes. Pull it over there.." I was busted! To make a long story short both me and the car got arrested. For the next few months the car stayed parked in the Police impound lot. I would go up after school and work on it. Chief van Wik got sick of looking at it and threaten to have it disposed of if I didn't come up with a title which I had no chance of actually doing. One day I took out the rear seats for some reason and there attached to the back of the seat cushion was a paper with the name and address of the owner. Unbelievable! I turned the info over to the Chief and about 2 weeks later he called my Dad and I along with Dick and his parents for a meeting at the Police Station. Once we all got settled he started telling us this convoluted story and out of his desk drawer comes the title, all neat and legal. He had been a busy Dutchman! We thanked him profusely and promised to get the car out of there immediately. I made a deal with Dick to buy out his share so it was all mine now. I drove that car for a year or so but it wasn't very reliable. I did love it, though. I eventually sold it to my neighbor for $450 and used the money to buy the Corvair pictured below. Who knows how much its worth now or where it ended up but I'll bet you its worth more than $450.
6'61 Corvair Monza1966 This was my first "nice" car. It had a 4 speed and dual carbs. I added a white racing strip down the middle and a Holly four barrel with an aftermarket intake manifold. I had quite a few problems with this one. The head gaskets blew which they tended to do and the clutch had to be replaced which was a major job. I drove it down to Florida for Spring Break and the engine seized outside of Jacksonville. My friend and I continued to Fort Lauderdale by bus while the 'Vair got a "new" engine installed. We picked it up on the way back but it didn't have the power the original one did. During that year I crashed my Ducati on the way to school which screwed my feet up pretty bad. I couldn't drive the 'Vair anymore so I traded it to my neighbor for a...
7'60 Plymouth Wagon1967 Well, there isn't much to say about this one. I modified the gas pedal so I could use my left foot since the right one was pretty screwed up after the motorcycle crash. 
8Fiberfab Avenger1967 In 1967 I went with my cousin Alan to the New York Auto Show. The one car that caught my attention more than any other was a blue Fiberfab Valkyrie kit car with a tube chassis and a big block V8. It was a close copy of a Ford GT40. Spectacular! Alan and I decided to visit the local distributor in Mamaroneck, New York. I ended up ordering an Avenger derivative which looked just like the Valkyrie but was built on a VW floor pan. I spent the entire summer of 1967 building my car on a 1500 VW Variant floor pan that featured a ball joint front end and increased power compared to a normal Beatle. I doubt it weighed more than 1200 lbs and as result, went like hell. It was the most fun summer I've ever had. I ended up painting it Pontiac GTO blue with a white stripe down the middle and added Mag wheels. I did all the work myself except painting. I made the wiring harnesses, mounted all the bodywork, hung the doors, finished the interior and even glued the front and rear windows in place. I learned more about cars as a result of this project than I ever could have. I ended up selling it a few years later but to be honest I can't remember who ended up with it. 
9'59 Porsche 356A1967Big story about this one but I have to get in the mood to write it :-)
10'63 MBG1968
11'68 Porsche 9121968
12'69-70 Porsche Company Cars 
13'70 Super Beatle1970
14'68 Dodge Van1971
15'71 Super Beatle1971
16'67 Porsche 9121971
17'72-74 Mazda Company Cars 
18'72 BMW 2002Tii1972
19'68 MGB1974
21'67 Datsun Pickup1974
22'71 Jaguar XKE1975
23'74 Toyota Corolla1976
24'77 Honda Accord1977
25'73 Jaguar XJ61977
26'59 Fiat 5001978
27'70 VW Bug1980
 '68 Datsun Pickup1981 
28'80 BMW 320I1981
29Porsche 9281981
30Porsche 9281982 
31Porsche 928S21983 
32'86 BMW 735i1986 
33'90 Mazda Miata1990 
34'90 Lexus LS4001990 
35'92 Lexus LS4001992 
36'96 Porsche 9111996 
37'97 Toyota Landcruiser1997 
38'00 Porsche 9112000 
39'01 BMW X52001 
40'02 BMW 330i2002 
41'02 Porsche 911 C42002 
42'03 Toyota Tundra2003 
43'07 BMW 335i2007 
44'07 Ford Taurus2007 
45'12 BMW 328i2012 
46'13 Hyundai Sonata2013 

 

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                                              Last modified: 03/20/2017