Monday, October 17, 2016

Beaters: Lincoln Continental Mark VI

I like the Mark VI. I'm on record. This one was driven by a friendly dude. It seems like a work in progress. What is really striking is how plain this car is without the usual trappings of pinstripes, padded vinyl roofs, thick body moldings, and "chrome" over the rockers. It just looks naked.

Lincoln Continental Mark VI

Beaters: 1972 Cadillac Coupe de Ville

Evidently, Uncle Bob has seen better days.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Rolls-Royce Ghost Drivers: They're Just Like Us!

True story: the Rolls Royce Ghost runs on the depleted souls of your fired servants vanquished competitors gas. So, of course, "Let's go to Costco!"
Guess what? That gas actually DOESN'T pump itself.

1986 Mercury Cougar: It Gets Better

In our last episode of Cars I Found While Ubering, we discussed the 1983-86 Cougars (which I still love). Instead of a beater from east Mesa, here is an XR-7 from near ASU with a turbo and Mustang GT wheels.
1986 Mercury Cougar

1986 Mercury Cougar

This is the last good Cougar - the last one with style and identity. The next year they became caricatures. In 1989, they became flabby, flat and generic. In the 1990s, they stuck the name on the third generation Ford Probe and called it "good."

It's near and dear to my heart for a couple of reasons: redemption from the 1980-82, uh, "experiment." And, I got up close and personal with a 1983 model - deep blue, red velour interior, TRX wheels and tires, and an infamous, overlong test drive with no salesman riding along.

This particular example seems to be holding on for dear life. I don't hate the wheels (unless they're just wheel covers). The tape stripes on the C-pillar and below the rub strip make me think this particular car was whored out marketed as some sort of completely ordinary "Special Edition." Think Escort "Sport" (Yeah, I/m looking at you, Tex Earnhardt.)
1986 Mercury Cougar

1960 Ford Ranch Wagon

My Grandpa would love this. The face of a Starliner; the utility of a Country Squire (mostly*).

Dodge Diplomat

What I would drive, if this were the late 1980s and I had money for the police auction. In between the 1970s full-size cop cars and the "panther"-based Crown Vics was the ironically-named Diplomat. Memorize that humorless face and that light pattern. Your license will thank you. I still clench and check my speed  when I see one.

Dodge Diplomat

Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time

I am a fan of the Mark VII LSC. I am also a fan of convertibles. This car is both together. It's is 100% pure awesome. And also a bit terrifying. On a Mark VII, the air suspension is a nightmare to fix.  IIRC, there are kits to turn it back to a conventional suspension. You would think the parts off a T-Bird would work.

The aftermarket convertible is another concern. This car started out as a pillared coupe. Aftermarket companies like ASC did good work back in the day. It's not clear who did this one.

With that said, this is a perfect car for AZ. It doesn't rain enough to worry too much about whether the top works or seals out the moisture. And, this is a 25+-year-old car. Nobody is going to go push the dynamic limits and expose the adequacy of the structure bolstering.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Public Service Request

Please please PLEASE paint your radiator support cross members black. The blue is beautiful, but seeing it behind the grill (and through those gaping holes under it)  takes away from the beauty of that face and the mystery of what monstrous powerplant lies behind.