Posts by: Jim Corbran

RealRides of WNY - 1984 300 TD

The Mercedes-Benz 300 TD(this one’s a 1984model) was the first factory-built station wagon from the Stuttgart, Germany-based luxury car manufacturer. Introduced in 1978 as the 240 TD with a 2404cc diesel engine, by MY 1981 it had morphed into the 300 TD Turbo-Diesel like the one seen here, with a 123-hp 2998cc turbocharged engine. A 1984 French ad told us “Plus les années passer

RealRides of WNY - 1958 Ford

This 1958 Ford Custom 300Tudorwas spotted at the 2018 Quaker Days car show in Orchard Park. It’s one of the many classic hunks of iron owned by Gowanda’s Steven Botsford, a regular attendee of area cruise nights/car shows. This two-door features a few items out of Ford’s 1958 accessories brochure: deluxe rear deck antenna, fender shields (skirts), gunsight fender ornaments, and F

RealRides of WNY - 1957 Bel Air

I know what you’re thinking… these things are a dime a dozen. But look a little closer. This is a 1957 Chevy Bel Airsport sedan— a four-door hardtop. This was only the second model year for this body style and yes, Chevy produced 137,672 of them, making it their fifth best seller for the model year, behind the Two-Ten 2-door sedan (160,090) and ahead of the Townsman 4-door wagon

RealRides of WNY - 1964 Cadillac

This 1964 Cadillac Fleetwood Sixty Specialsedan was the almostcrème of the '64 Cadillac crop. That honor would go, I guess, to the two different Fleetwood Seventy-Five models — the sedan and the limousine. The Sixty Special was a bit more exclusive than the much more plebian Series 62 and DeVille models. The Fleetwood had its own distinctive roofline with a smaller rear windscreen for

RealRides of WNY (on the road) - Dyane 6

You’re probably all familiar with the brand, perhaps for no other reason than seeing 1950s DS sedans in old French movies. But how many of you have actually seen a Citroën Dyane 6in person? Or even knew that such a thing existed? Built from 1967 to 1983, the Dyane was based on another quirky, iconic Citroën, the 2CV. The “6” in the name of today’s RealRiderefers t

RealRides of WNY - 1949 Hudson

This 1949 Hudson Commodore Club Coupeis from year two of the marque’s Step-Downstyling cycle, which was meant to be their version of the “longer, lower, wider” mantra which was about to overtake Detroit (see below for Step-Down explanation). And the new Hudsons actually werelonger, lower, and wider than their predecessors. But not quite as muchlonger, lower, and wider as their ad

RealRides of WNY - 1986 Gran Fury

From the Straightedge School of Automotive Designcomes this 1986 Plymouth Gran Fury. The nearly identical 1985 model’s brochure called it “…a lot of car for the money.”Meanwhile, Dodge was telling us that their slightly more upscale version of the car, the Diplomat, “…offers all the traditional comforts and luxuries that make full-sized cars so appealing.&rdqu

RealRides of WNY - 1984 Regal

The subtle two-tone of this 1984 Buick Regal Limited(which from here appears to be the rather unimaginatively named Light Brown and Brown) is a far cry from some of the colors offered back in the 1950s — like the Condor Yellow Roadmaster convertible pictured in the inset… with a red interior! The 1955 models also offered Tri-Tones, easily made possible by the car’s chrome sweep

RealRides of WNY - 1982 T-Bird

Looking again at these 1982 Ford Thunderbirdphotos had me re-reading an article about Thunderbird nicknames on hemmings.comwhich appeared over the summer. The writer told us the cars from this era (1980-82) are known as Box Birds. Can’t say that I’ve heard that before. I amhowever familiar with the Square Birdterm affectionately bestowed upon the 1958-60 models (below), and I think it&

RealRides of WNY - 1980 Avanti II

This 1980 Avanti IIwas spotted back in 2016 at a Studebaker swap meet in Dunkirk. This one of course, isn’t technically a Studebaker, as they stopped building cars after the 1966 model year. The original Avanti (minus the Roman numeral) went out of production after MY 1964, but the tooling was bought by a group of South Bend Studebaker dealers (South Bend being Studebaker’s home). The