For the Love Of Cars

February 8, 2023 –

In the early 60s, introducing new model cars was an event. Local auto dealers revealed the new models with great fanfare. They covered showrooms with paper, creating a mystique about the design of the new models. It was showtime. Balloons, popcorn and sodas, and pencils. In 1967, the USA had 80 million registered automobiles. Playing cool, I bought a Ford Thunderbird produced that year.

I was married for less than two years. One evening my wife and were sitting on our small apartment porch looking at our dirty Ford car when I said, “There must be an easier way to get a clean car.” She jokingly replied, “We can go buy a new car.”

The Ford Dealership was only four miles away. We bought a new Thunderbird. We didn’t know the color because the sun had set, and the dealership lot wasn’t well-lit. After we signed the papers, we drove to a K-Mart store and parked, closely facing the building. Our headlights reflected from the store windows. We bought a green car.

In 1967, we paid around $14,000. Today the selling price of a non-collection Landau is $4,800. Had we held on to that car and taken good care of it, we would have an old green Thunderbird worth more than our current 2022 car.