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Thread: Best Big 3 Land Yacht

  1. #41
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    Rockne10,
    If I remember correctly that Imperial has the distinction of having the first curved side glass. Correct me if I am wrong.
    Bill

  2. #42
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    Any full size station wagon from the 60's, 70's and 80's from the"Big Three" should qualify I would think.

  3. #43
    President Member t walgamuth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by studegary View Post
    In 1963-1964 I owned a 1962 Pontiac Catalina hardtop. It had the convertible top shaped roof. In 1962, Chevrolet had the Impala with the same roof as my Pontiac and they also had the Bel Air Sport Coupe that people now refer to as a bubble top. Please explain your "1962 Pontiac-bubble top".

    EDIT: In 1961, Pontiac did have a roof line that could be referred to as a bubble top.
    I thought that faux convertible was grand prix only.

    - - - Updated - - -

    65 corvair had curved side windows I believe.
    Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

  4. #44
    President Member Noxnabaker's Avatar
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    Buzzard, that Imperial is a -61 & I think the roofline was earlier than that.


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  5. #45
    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buzzard View Post
    Rockne10,
    If I remember correctly that Imperial has the distinction of having the first curved side glass. Correct me if I am wrong.
    For a postwar car, they accept the 1957 Imperial to be the 'first', but a few pre-war examples had curved side glass before that: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...Rauch-amp-Lang

    Craig

  6. #46
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    The first car I ever drove, 1960 Chrysler.

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    Excuse me, I meant to indicate 1961 Pontiac bubble top. I really do know the difference, the 62 would be my second fav full sized Pontiac, though.

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
    I thought that faux convertible was grand prix only.

    - - - Updated - - -

    65 corvair had curved side windows I believe.
    In 1962, the Catalina two door hardtop and the Gran Prix shared the same body (convertible roof lines). The external difference is in the grille and other trim. For 1963, the Gran Prix became a different body.
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  9. #49
    President Member t walgamuth's Avatar
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    You're right. I don't remember ever noticing one before.
    Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
    You're right. I don't remember ever noticing one before.
    Gran Prix production went from 30,195 for 1962 (a low number for '60s GM production and the first year of the GP) to 72,959 for 1963.
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  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blue 15G View Post
    A '68 Mercury! My Mom and Dad had a Colony Park Station Wagon version of that car that they bought from my Great Aunt after her husband died. This was in 1971. It had a 390 V-8 with a 2 barrel carb. I loved the amount of power the car had, and that wasn't even the biggest engine available. Unfortunately, a ride on any secondary road at all made the back seat passengers seasick. Way too much roll and slop. I guess if we had bought heavy duty shocks and/or springs for it, it would have been a much better car to ride in, but we didn't know any better back then.
    Lucky you! I'd love to met these cars in the flesh, but when I was young, the market for US cars was almost extinct in France. Once in a while, I do a research on Hemmings for this very model. Who knows, one day I might be foolish enough to hit the buy button!
    Nice day to all.

  12. #52
    President Member Noxnabaker's Avatar
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    Just go north Christophe, in Sweden you'll see enough US cars to last you a while, google images "Power Meet Sweden" for example.


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  13. #53
    President Member Michidan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by studegary View Post
    In 1962, the Catalina two door hardtop and the Gran Prix shared the same body (convertible roof lines). The external difference is in the grille and other trim. For 1963, the Gran Prix became a different body.
    Yes it did, quite a nice new body with a beautiful concave rear glass shared with its Olds Starfire cousin only.
    The nice green example here currently resides alongside my Studebaker. Love them both.



    I don't think it's fair to lump any GM B body, especially a 2 door, into the land yacht category though. They are big, but there were soooo many bigger.

  14. #54
    President Member t walgamuth's Avatar
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    No not at all, just a land schooner.
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  15. #55
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    For styling in that era, it is hard to beat a 1955 or 1956 DeSoto --- well maybe a '56-'57 Golden Hawk is close. For both quality and looks, I like mid-1960s Chrysler products and AMC Ambassadors.
    Bill Jarvis

  16. #56
    Silver Hawk Member JRoberts's Avatar
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    For me a black 1958 Imperial would do it. But then, so would a 1966 Charger or a 1961 Pontiac bubble top.
    Joe Roberts
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  17. #57
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    I owned a “67 Electra Duce and a Quarter land yacht - 455 Wildcat engine. It was quite a cruiser.

  18. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by JRoberts View Post
    For me a black 1958 Imperial would do it. But then, so would a 1966 Charger or a 1961 Pontiac bubble top.
    I saw the Charger II show car at the World's Fair. I kept pestering dealers because I figured that all that they had to do was lop off some of the rear and they would have a production car. I took delivery of the first one in this area. I kept it nine years and 150K miles. It was a great car, but I would not consider it to be a "Land Yacht", the subject of this thread. I saw a '66-'67 Charger in the staging area at the current Mecum Auction, but I did not see it sold. Also, in the time that I have watched the auction over the past three days, I have not seen any Studebakers.

    The closest that I came to owning your other two was a 1967 Imperial Crown Coupe and a 1962 Pontiac Catalina Ventura hardtop coupe.
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  19. #59
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    The car that my new wife and I were driven away from the church in after our wedding (1991) was my father-in-law's 1978 Olds 98 Regency Brougham 4-door sedan. The family calls it the "funeral car" because thats when they often used it. It still only has about 5000 miles on it now. I'm afraid that the mice on the farm have had their way with it by now, though. My first car was a 1966 Chevy Belair 4-door. I replaced it with a 1966 Olds 88 "Celebrity" 4-door with a 396 v8. My favorite cruiser, though, was my 1962 Chevy Impala 4-door, which was my daily driver 1990-96. I drove it all over the mountains of Wyoming and it never stranded or ditched me, summer or winter.
    John
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  20. #60
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    When our 3 boys were teenagers, one of these was our family car:

    We hauled a lot of kids, bicycles, and related items in that '71 Caddy Fleetwood 75! We also had a Mercury Colony Park station wagon, but the Caddy was a lot more fun. Used funeral car, jump seats, low mileage, well maintained. <G>

    Dave Lester

  21. #61
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    1957, 1958, 1959, 1960, and 1961 Chrysler 300 letter cars, Not any better full sized cars ever built for style and performance. Love those fins!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.



    Bill

  22. #62
    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Studedude View Post
    When our 3 boys were teenagers, one of these was our family car:

    We hauled a lot of kids, bicycles, and related items in that '71 Caddy Fleetwood 75! We also had a Mercury Colony Park station wagon, but the Caddy was a lot more fun. Used funeral car, jump seats, low mileage, well maintained. <G>
    I've always preferred the earlier Fleetwood 75's over the '71 & later models. This '66 8-passenger sedan shows up regularly at the Friday night show'n'shine in the summer months:



    Craig

  23. #63
    President Member Noxnabaker's Avatar
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    About stretched Cadillacs; when Mowitz was just born we were looking for a wagon & the cheapest / best condition & such we found & bought was a -81 Cadillac ex hearse that was already changed & used as a family transport, & with 2 relatively big dogs & all that goes with a baby it was beautifull!
    & on the highway... FAST!
    But the 70's & 80's cars rust more than anything else here so it had its bubbles.


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  24. #64
    President Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    In the late '70s and into the '80s, in an attempt to keep costs down after struggling to meet CAFE, emissions and safety requirements, GM didn't add any type of rustproofing to any car. That's why they rusted so quickly and you don't see as many now as from other time periods.
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  25. #65
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    RE: Craig's post no.62 (referenced the post in order not to repeat the pictures)

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I prefer the '71-'72 over the '65-'66.

    I drove stretched Cadillac limousines, much bigger than the pictured factory models, for tens of thousands of miles over nine years, so I am familiar with them. My favorite was an '89 with a '93 second. The '90 had the most power, but was not good otherwise. I have driven them only a few miles, like for a wedding or funeral, up to round trips to Atlantic City or RI (hundreds of miles in the day).

    What I noticed on the picture that Craig posted ('66), is that the owner was lazy in cleaning his rear whitewalls. He did not rotate the tires, remove the fender skirts or elevate the car in order to clean the entire whitewall.
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  26. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greenstude View Post
    For styling in that era, it is hard to beat a 1955 or 1956 DeSoto --- well maybe a '56-'57 Golden Hawk is close. For both quality and looks, I like mid-1960s Chrysler products and AMC Ambassadors.
    Agree 100% on the '55 DeSoto. I got my Uncle's '55 from him when he bought a new Chrysler Newport in '73. The DeSoto was a 4 door Firedome, 291 Hemi, Powerflite automatic, power steering but no power brakes. The best way I can describe the car is that getting into it and driving it was like putting on your favorite coat or jacket. It was like you were wearing the car instead of driving it. The car was extremely comfortable. Good ergonomics, driving position, ride and handling, room, styling...I loved that car. The only drawbacks were that the brakes weren't the best (Chrysler enlarged them in '56) and the gas mileage was practically nil.

  27. #67
    President Member t walgamuth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gunslinger View Post
    In the late '70s and into the '80s, in an attempt to keep costs down after struggling to meet CAFE, emissions and safety requirements, GM didn't add any type of rustproofing to any car. That's why they rusted so quickly and you don't see as many now as from other time periods.
    Apparently they did not even paint theinside of some body parts. I remember my buddy had a 75(?) Blazer which rusted the tailgate out almost before he got it home. I heard of trucks that rused out while sitting on the dealer's lot prior to sale. I never heard it blamed on CAFE before.
    Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

  28. #68
    President Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    I'm not blaming CAFE in and of itself...it was the enormous costs of meeting CAFE, safety and emissions requirements...the costs were cumulative. GM's response to mitigating those costs was to make the business decision to forgo rustproofing to reduce costs or the price rises would have made them uncompetitive in the market. Whether that was a good decision is open to debate but they made it.
    Poet...Mystic...Soldier of Fortune. As always...self-absorbed, adversarial, cocky and in general a malcontent.

  29. #69
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    As recently as ten years ago, people that ran Demolition Derbies in this area were aware of and enforced the "No Imperials" ban that had to be implemented to be "Fair".

    It will always have my heart, but even though it was at the time "Land Yacht Lite", my 1976 Cordoba was my favorite car. Lasted me 200K miles and only the water pump gasket had to be broken open. Created thirty years of brand loyalty that sadly is destroyed now. B and C Bodies were darn good cars.

  30. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by 556063 View Post
    As recently as ten years ago, people that ran Demolition Derbies in this area were aware of and enforced the "No Imperials" ban that had to be implemented to be "Fair".

    It will always have my heart, but even though it was at the time "Land Yacht Lite", my 1976 Cordoba was my favorite car. Lasted me 200K miles and only the water pump gasket had to be broken open. Created thirty years of brand loyalty that sadly is destroyed now. B and C Bodies were darn good cars.
    I agree with you. Just today, I was thinking about cars of different decades that I have owned. The only ones from the 1970s that I liked and were good cars were my 1972 Sebrings, my 1973 Laguna and my 1975 Cordoba.

    EDIT: Ones that I left out include my 1971 Camaro, my 1974 Dart Swinger and my 1978 Oldsmobile 88 (others must be blocked from my mind).

    EDIT II: I just thought of my 1970 Monte Carlo (just barely in the '70s). It was a good car that I also liked the looks of. I sold it to a guy that I worked with who drove it for many more years.
    Last edited by studegary; 01-20-2018 at 08:47 AM.
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  31. #71
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    Out of all the dozens of cars I've owned, my '71 Satellite Sebring Plus was the most outstanding in every aspect. Equipped with the 383 Magnum, Torque-Flite, and 3:23 posi, it was a Road Runner in disguise. Had that part throttle down-shift that was 'right there' responsive and its high speed highway manners were nothing short of amazing. With its 'fuselage' profile it was like flying a jet fighter plane, and flying along at 90 was as relaxed as at 40. Put over a 100k miles on it and it was still in immaculate condition. Damn how I miss that car. At a time that I 'had too many vehicles', and in a moment of weakness I gave in and sold it to a sister-in-law. Drinking, she crashed it within a week, got it out of the body shop and crashed it again the next week. I damn near cried. But the tale doesn't end there because -someone- bought the still gleaming carcass from the wrecking yard, and I like to think that it was restored and is still out there somewhere.

  32. #72
    President Member Kurt's Avatar
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    My vote would be 1965 Buick Wildcat. Big car that looks cool and has the 425 nailhead. You rarely see them anymore. I believe they were considered the “bankers hot rod”
    1962 Champ

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  33. #73
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    The best land cruiser that I owned was a 1966 4 door Chevy Caprice equipped with a 396 cid 325 hp engine with a three speed automatic. The car had a top end of over 120 mph. I found that out when racing a Buick GS on interstate 80 here in Penna.

    John S.

  34. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jessie J. View Post
    Out of all the dozens of cars I've owned, my '71 Satellite Sebring Plus was the most outstanding in every aspect. Equipped with the 383 Magnum, Torque-Flite, and 3:23 posi, it was a Road Runner in disguise. Had that part throttle down-shift that was 'right there' responsive and its high speed highway manners were nothing short of amazing. With its 'fuselage' profile it was like flying a jet fighter plane, and flying along at 90 was as relaxed as at 40. Put over a 100k miles on it and it was still in immaculate condition. Damn how I miss that car. At a time that I 'had too many vehicles', and in a moment of weakness I gave in and sold it to a sister-in-law. Drinking, she crashed it within a week, got it out of the body shop and crashed it again the next week. I damn near cried. But the tale doesn't end there because -someone- bought the still gleaming carcass from the wrecking yard, and I like to think that it was restored and is still out there somewhere.
    I have owned three cars of that series/body style, but they were all 1972s. One that was my everyday car for many years was a Satellite Sebring with a 318. I also had a Satellite Sebring Plus with a 318 for awhile. Then I had a Road Runner GTX with a 440 and two window stickers to accommodate all of the options.
    I also had 1973 Satellite Sebrings. One was a 318 and the other was a Plus with a 400. Neither was as nice looking or as good a runner as the 1972s due to government requirements.
    Gary L.
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  35. #75
    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by studegary View Post
    I also had 1973 Satellite Sebrings. One was a 318 and the other was a Plus with a 400. Neither was as nice looking or as good a runner as the 1972s due to government requirements.
    With very few exceptions, that was true with the North American market 1973 offerings.

    The 1973 Grand Am, Laguna, Corvette, and the F-body GM's so equipped proved those ghastly 5-mph bumpers that stood out like a sore thumb at each end other 1973 model year cars could be effectively hidden. If I was into third-generation 1973-77 A-body GM's, the 1973 Grand Am (and only 1973) would be my pick.

    Craig

  36. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by 8E45E View Post
    With very few exceptions, that was true with the North American market 1973 offerings.

    The 1973 Grand Am, Laguna, Corvette, and the F-body GM's so equipped proved those ghastly 5-mph bumpers that stood out like a sore thumb at each end other 1973 model year cars could be effectively hidden. If I was into third-generation 1973-77 A-body GM's, the 1973 Grand Am (and only 1973) would be my pick.

    Craig
    I agree. One that I did mention here earlier was my 1973 Laguna. I thought that it looked nice, especially for a 1973. I sold it to another Avanti guy for his daughter's use. Years later, I heard that she still had it.
    Gary L.
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  37. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by studegary View Post
    I have owned three cars of that series/body style, but they were all 1972s. One that was my everyday car for many years was a Satellite Sebring with a 318. I also had a Satellite Sebring Plus with a 318 for awhile. Then I had a Road Runner GTX with a 440 and two window stickers to accommodate all of the options.
    I also had 1973 Satellite Sebrings. One was a 318 and the other was a Plus with a 400. Neither was as nice looking or as good a runner as the 1972s due to government requirements.
    My '71 Satellite was Dark Gold, with the color matching Endura bumper. Almost no chrome other than the window and wheel housing trim.
    I have never seen another one exactly like it, not even in pictures. It was one sleek ride from end to end, had about a dozen guys make offers on it, a couple even seriously approached me wanting to swap their 3 and 4 model year newer, new cars for it even up. Only car I have ever owned that for years elicited that kind of 'want it' enthusiasm. And that's saying something as I owned a '69 Camaro SS 396 and a '70 Cougar Eliminator SCJ 428 Drag Pac, as well as several other highly desirable performance vehicles. Now wish I had let it go to someone who would have appreciated and treated it better than sister-in-law.

  38. #78
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    My everyday driver is a '96 Fleetwood that I bought used many years ago. It had been garaged all it's life and had 36K miles. The original owner advertised it for a month. I was the only looker. Paid 25% of it's original sticker.

    GM LT1 engine. Switch the traction control off, and it will boil the rear tires for a city block.

    20+ MPG on the Interstate. Around town...don't ask.

    It will haul four people in luxury and comfort, even six. And the trunk will swallow all the luggage you care to haul.

    It's been entirely reliable, and parts are generic GM, available everywhere, cheap.

    Best car buy I ever made.


  39. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnormanh View Post
    My everyday driver is a '96 Fleetwood that I bought used many years ago. It had been garaged all it's life and had 36K miles. The original owner advertised it for a month. I was the only looker. Paid 25% of it's original sticker.

    GM LT1 engine. Switch the traction control off, and it will boil the rear tires for a city block.

    20+ MPG on the Interstate. Around town...don't ask.

    It will haul four people in luxury and comfort, even six. And the trunk will swallow all the luggage you care to haul.

    It's been entirely reliable, and parts are generic GM, available everywhere, cheap.

    Best car buy I ever made.

    The livery company that I worked for had stretched limousines made out of that style of Fleetwood. They were nice to drive, held up well, were comfortable and got reasonable highway mileage. One problem with them that comes to mind is that they had a propensity of locking the doors on their own. Late one night I was locked out in a customer's driveway. The local police could not get a door open. A manager had to come from his home to the livery office, pick up a spare key and bring it to me. He didn't seem mad and then I found out that the same thing had happened to him and other chauffeurs. After that, I disassembled the fob from the keys when I went to use the car. That way, I had a quick way in when the car decided to lock its doors.
    Gary L.
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  40. #80
    Silver Hawk Member JRoberts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by studegary View Post
    I saw the Charger II show car at the World's Fair. I kept pestering dealers because I figured that all that they had to do was lop off some of the rear and they would have a production car. I took delivery of the first one in this area. I kept it nine years and 150K miles. It was a great car, but I would not consider it to be a "Land Yacht", the subject of this thread. I saw a '66-'67 Charger in the staging area at the current Mecum Auction, but I did not see it sold. Also, in the time that I have watched the auction over the past three days, I have not seen any Studebakers.

    The closest that I came to owning your other two was a 1967 Imperial Crown Coupe and a 1962 Pontiac Catalina Ventura hardtop coupe.
    Why would the '58 Imperial, the '66 Charger and the '61 Pontiac bubble to not meet subject of this thread? Many cars mentioned here are about the same size. As these three, but not all look as good (In my opinion of course) as they do.
    Joe Roberts
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