Realrides Of WNY

RealRides of WNY

Second time in a week we’ve run across a car from the seventies which attached the Roman numeral II to its name, this time being this 1971 Pontiac Ventura II. Yes, it looks like a Chevy Nova (which itself started life as… the Chevy II), and that’s because it pretty much is a Chevy Nova with a different grille, taillights, and minor trim changes. Not to be outdone, for MY1973 Buick and Oldsmobile w

RealRides of WNY

Went strawberry picking with some friends a few weeks back, and on our way out we spotted this 1974 VW Beetle resting in the shade. Which is where we all should have been on that hot, humid, sunny afternoon. In 1974 the Beetle’s days were numbered, as the new front-drive Rabbit was introduced for 1975. The Beetle Cabriolet, as the convertible was known, would soldier on into 1980, while 1977 would

RealRides of WNY

It’s the vehicle that never really answered the question, “Is it a car or a truck?” because it’s both. It’s the 1964 Chevy El Camino, the Chevelle-based car/pickup which allowed you to haul stuff in its six-foot long integrated cargo bed. Although, nothing too heavy please, as the El Camino was rated at only about a half-ton cargo capacity. Chevy, in its brochure, called the El Camino both a perso

RealRides of WNY

Nothing says you’ve arrived more than driving up in a 1966 Lincoln Continental. Even a tired-looking example like this black one seen recently in Tonawanda still looks classy. A bear to park? Sure. Can’t pass a gas pump without stopping in? Of course not! But the seats were available upholstered in Madrigal cloth; and… those suicide doors! And for ’66, Lincoln introduced a two-door coupé model to

RealRides of WNY

A lesson in being careful what you wish for. By 1973 Ford’s Pony car had become an oversized, overweight shadow of its former self. So, the following year… Ta-Da! The Pinto-based 1974 Mustang II made its debut. This well-preserved yellow example, seen over the weekend in Tonawanda, is the ritzy Ghia model. Sales were up quite a bit from 1973, but the Mustang available with only four- or six-cylind

RealRides of WNY

From our They Can’t Always Be Pretty files comes this 1987 GMC Suburban. Back in ’87 a Suburban was still pretty much a truck, not a luxury SUV costing 50 grand or so. It was usually used for carrying workers and/or work stuff, and was rarely seen parked in the front row of, say, Santora’s. This white example looks like it’s been around the block a few times, and will probably make many more laps

RealRides of WNY

A Grand Marquis hot rod? Well, not exactly, but this 2003 Mercury Marauder curiously was based on the GM rather than Ford’s Crown Vic. Maybe they were trying for an image change by offering this — yes, hot rod, in a showroom usually filled with pensioned tire-kickers. Under the hood of the Marauder lurked a 32-valve 302-hp V-8, while the interior featured real gauges, and two rather straight exhau

RealRides of WNY

Not often you see a Porsche 928 anymore, let alone two of them parked side-by-side. Yet here these two are, sitting in a Niagara Falls driveway looking not too bad for their age. The 928 was produced from 1977-95; these two look to be from the mid-80s. The blue one is a 928 S which was the faster of the two. When the 928 was first introduced, it is thought that the plan for this front-engined wate

RealRides of WNY

This 1949 Ford Custom Club Coupe was way more popular than the much plainer Standard series model, with sales of 150,254 vs 4,170. The Custom added Ford’s V-8 and fancier trim while the Standard model looked more like something the guy on the bottom rung of the sales force received as his company car. This one also has extra-cost options like full wheel covers and whitewalls, sun visor, fog lights

Real Rides of WNY

Bowtie cars didn’t get much bigger than this 1976 Chevrolet Caprice Sport Sedan. As a matter of fact, it was the full-sized Chevy’s final year of being full-sized, as they (along with GM’s other big cars) were downsized for 1977. Although pretty much a re-hash of the ’75 model, Chevy made sure in their promotional material to point out the new rectangular headlights on the ’76 models. Thank you fe