@Ad-absurdum-per-aspera the guy would vacuum his yard and driveway almost daily, and he kept a pair of loafers in the front seat - everyday after work, he'd pull in the driveway, get a vacuum out of thr garage, vacuum out the interior, change shoes in the driver seat, then pull in. Today we'd call it OCD, back then it was anal retentive. Also pulled a gun on the neighbor's Golden Retriever a couple times, told them it was dead if it ever set foot on his property
@Ad-absurdum-per-aspera The way it's parked by the curb makes me wonder if this is supposed to be a RHD model... It's hard to see a steering wheel, but I think I see a dashboard bulge on the curb side. If this is indeed a LHD, then this is a one-way street, or she parked wrong. Maybe someone forgot to include the "closed course, do not attempt" disclaimer.
@facw for its time, the Monza was an OK car, not as good as an AMC Spirit at $4,320 (which came with standard air conditioning and fully galvanized body panels) or a Corolla (which you might buy if your last name was Helmsley, Kerkorian, or Trump, but what about the average Joe 24-Pack?)
@Highlander — Well, sure! Simple to work on, timeless good looks, great parts availability, and like many classics-to-be, they were going through their years in the wilderness when they were just a cheap used car.
A driving experience that should get you comp time in purgatory for some sins big enough to be really fun. In its defense, though, when this car came out, a lot of companies were betting on diesels for the US market (even BMW got in on the act, albeit with a turbo that spiced things up a bit) as people looked apprehensively to a future of expensive and at times hard-to-get fuel.
Then OPEC decided to bicker among themselves in various ways (most notably, Iraq decided to conquer Iran and neither side achieved much except a lengthy blood-soaked stalemate) rather than continue hoovering our wallets, so in the mid-80s, oil prices descended to a long low plateau. Car makers then mostly hung up this particular hairshirt.
Here's a modern story on driving a Chevette diesel (tl;dr: like driving a regular Chevette, only with more time to savor the experience). The upside of anhedonia: even with automatic transmission, they saw high-thirties MPG in thick city traffic, and an easy 40+ with some hope of hypermiling well into the 50s at illegal-when-new modern freeway speeds (which, yes, it will eventually reach and sustain).
@KAC They're actually Indestructable, (redline 5200, dumop clutch at 7200, repeat) and they handle with just some decent rubber but are the most uncool car ever to exist that's the primary thing wrong with them, and being brutally underpowered.
@RacinBob One last note. Do not confuse the early '06 uplander with the "07 and '08. The '06 had the crappy underpowered and unreliable 3.4 V6 and the 5 bolt hubs with what were described as potato chip thin front disks.
GM in its grand tradition finally got everything right with the '07 uplander just in time to close the plant down in '08!
@Highlander These cars were utter crap when new. No intensity of GM apologist can claim they stack up favorably against a contemporary Explorer except for perhaps very niche use cases involving towing.
@pip-bip 56mpg highway as I recall, the most fuel efficient car on the market at the time, and one of the cheapest (like $800 more than a Yugo, but even closer than that, since no dealers actually stocked base Yugos)
@ranwhenparked I feel like especially with the widespread acceptance of crossovers and SUVs, the bare gray plastic bumpers of the '90s should make a comeback. Not quite 5mph bumpers, but able to gracefully take scratches and resist dings.
In related news, I've finally scheduled my car to go to a body shop. I'm expecting it to need a new bumper and new headlight lens at least. We'll see how it goes...
The car-like vehicles don't have the profit margin that the bigger trucks have.
There are also very few passenger car platforms anymore that lend themselves to this kind of thing. It's been some years since GM made a body-on-frame passenger car, as opposed to pickups. (The SSR was based on a pickup, so there was no need to keep a car platform on artificial life support just to build it, and it was both expensive and kind of a sales disappointment.) And even if they were still offering, say, a body-on-frame Caprice, today's need to re-do safety approval if you change much more than the paint scheme would be another obstacle.
Circling back to @SilentbutnotreallyDeadly's proposition that people don't want this: The other awkward fact about the El Camino is that it never did sell all that well in the US market. Only in the 1970s did they consistently move 50,000 a year, and by the mid-late 80s it was deep into "lions don't hunt mice" territory for a company as big as GM.
@pip-bip -- Wow, I've never seen one of those, only the Checker equivalent, the Aerobus. Turns out, though, that there's a long tradition of making things like this out of both Chevy cars and (somewhat more sensibly) Suburbans.
I gather that a company called Armbruster-Stageway (whose origins date back to when they made actual stagecoaches) usually did the deed. They're still around, but more focused these days on your last ride.
@pip-bip These were all pretty trim by modern standards
'64 Impala: 209.9 inches long, vs '22 Suburban at 225.7
'64 Chevelle: 197 inches vs '22 Malibu at 193.8 (only one downsized)
'64 Nova: 182.9 inches vs '22 Blazer at 191.4
'64 Corvair: 180 inches vs '22 Equinox at 187.8
'64 Corvette: 175.2 inches vs '22 Corvette at 182.3
The Aerostar had a better Cd than a fox Mustang and some (rare!) came with a 2.3, so an SVO Aerostar is possible. Drop it using minitruck parts to lower the frontal area, and the later AWD ones had an aluminum driveshaft that was effectively the SVO part for a Fox. Plus I just like that era Ford even if the V6s sucked ass. Super clean box Ranger in brown near me. Same house has an SSR and a Vehicross.
The Astro is an S10 which means V8 swaps are EZPZ, if you're lame. If you're cool, you know the AWD versions used a Syclone/Typhoon transfer case (slightly different and I can't remember which specific one is shared with the Astro). So slam a turbo on the thing and you have a Monsoon. Even better, swap all that into an early cargo variant, which weighs like 2800lbs or something.
You have a fair point.
My threshold for stupid or idiotic people or behaviour has worn thinner.
The other day I saw a runner, run into traffic, as in head on, to run around a fence (red arrow),
Castle Way 1 - Copy (2).JPG
which was put there so people don't cross there. He'd ran past a subway underpass, a pedestrian crossing and a bridge, not only that but the direction he was running, there was another crossing a 100 metres down the road.