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Not too many people actually posting pics of their cars..



My Ford Crown Victoria. It's an LX sport, with the HO engine and dual exhausts, it's lowered by two inches. It's nice, but not spectacular. The same platform underpins one of the FAW Hong-Qi cars, so that's how large it is (quite).



My 1978 Fiat 128, built in 9/77, a 1.3 liter car in excellent shape. No options, this is a rare example of a factory-direct base model. At the time it was common for dealers and manufacturers to advertise a low-price car but not actually build any of them - they'd simply make everything "optional" even when it was required to be purchased. So you had to special order one of the low-cost cars if you wanted one, and that's what happened here.



My old 128 4-door sedan was a deluxe, with all the options. This car had a serious rust problem. You can't see it in the pictures because it was mostly under the car. The floors were fine, but the front suspension mounts were distinctly not. Eventually the car became unsafe to drive, so I swapped it for a Mk1 VW Rabbit. The friend who took the 128 stripped and scrapped it, and some of it's parts live on in my current 128 (the 2-door).

The 1981 Volkswagen:



Perhaps the best car I've ever owned, though certainly not the fastest or the most glamorous. No, it did what it did and it did it very well. It ran like a perpetual motion machine, never needed any maintenance, and got nearly 50 mpg (better than a prius..). The downside was that it was a very slow car - it could do perhaps 65 mph with the pedal to the floor on a downhill decline. 1.6 liters and five gears, but only 52 bhp and 74 lbs/ft. 0-60 was somewhere in the 20-25 second range. But it ran so well, and it handled wonderfully, and the cavernous hatch could handle any load. Another downside was poor ventilation - fixed by adding those flip-out ventipanes you see in the picture. The wheels were another upgrade I did, they came from an '82 Jetta. The earlier wheels (which are still sitting in my garage) were steels that were horribly rusty and pitted, these aluminum turbines were much nicer and they were lighter, too. I sold this car in 2005 at a considerable profit.
 

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Yes, "civilian" Crown Vics are relatively rare. The VAST, VAST majority of Crown Victorias are used for one of two purposes - Police Cars or Taxis.



You can see both uses in this photo, which features the Police Interceptor P71 and the Taxicab P72 model. The basic civilian package (P73) is for fleet use mostly - municipal cars, government issue sedans, etc. My car is the LX, the P74 with most of the Interceptor options but a very high-end interior. It's not a Mercedes S-class, but it's a nice car, and reasonably quick.

My Crown Victoria actually replaced another, similar car:



My old 1979 Chevrolet Impala was originally a fleet car built for Avis rent-a-car. I found old "Property of AVIS" stickers on the radio and other parts that were hidden from view. It was the opposite of the CV - it had few if any options, though it did have the base 305 (5-liter) V8. A fun car for awhile but I got bored.

Long before that I had another car on that GM "B-body" platform, a 1979 Oldsmobile Delta 88 Holiday hardtop, although it wasn't a real "hardtop." The Delta 88 was a trooper - 245,000 miles before it finally developed a stress crack in the frame.

 

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Compared to the average Chinese mini, it's awful. Compared to an American SUV, it's really not that bad. 16/21, but it prefers the highway.

The 128, on the other hand, gets around 35 mpg, more on the highway but I don't usually use it on the highway.

I have, of course, had many cars that get better gas mileage:



My 1974 MG B/GT (sold, 2001)



My 1983 Fiat-Bertone X1/9 VS (sold, 2005)



My 1964 Renault R4L (sold, 2000)



..And my old 1981 Fiat 131/Brava 2000ie (sold, 2002)
 

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No, these are just cars that have come and gone.

I consider all of these vehicles, except the Renault, to be modern cars - I mean, they're not "modern" but they're newer than the cars I'm really interested in - stuff from the 1920's and 1930's.

 

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You've really never heard of Opel?

They're the German arm of GM, since the 1920's. They're huge all over Europe, for some time Europe's largest maker, although I don't think they still occupy that spot.

Vauxhall is the British arm, Holden the Australian. Though they were all once unique, today they share many models (Vauxhalls are 100% Opels, Holden has several models of it's own for the locals, plus Holden makes many of the world-market Chevrolets).

The BBS-style rims on the Crown Victoria are actually stock. They were not invented for the Crown Victoria but for the Lincoln MKVII LSC, some 16 years ago. They just recycled them for use on the P74 "LX" package Crown Victoria.

I'm thinking about changing them for some of those new 16" Mustang "retro" wheels with the fake "Knock off" caps.
 

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Cool stuff, Raul. I love those Röhr photos from the museum in Espoo. H.G. Röhr is one of my favorite personalities from that era, although he died tragically young of a lung infection in 1937. He'd already been the chief engineer of his own company (Röhr before he lost control of it), Adler (where he designed the fwd Trumpf and Trumpf Junior), and Mercedes-Benz (500/540K, 770K, 320, 230, etc.) by that time.
 
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