Journal: Which Classic Car Is Surprisingly Great?

Which Classic Car Is Surprisingly Great?

Michael Banovsky By Michael Banovsky
June 17, 2016
13 comments

If you’d have told 10-year-old me that one day I’d have the keys to a 29 horsepower Citroën 2CV, he would have politely asked, “Why?” “Because I realized it was unexpectedly amazing,” I’d reply. A huge number of classic cars will also be amazing, for different reasons—but have you been surprised to like a certain vehicle?

I’d count the horsepower ratings of supercars, log their 0-60 mph times in a notebook, and endlessly sketch the Ferrari Testarossa’s side strakes during class as if my life depended on it. The car magazines I read had mentioned the 2CV, though more as a punchline and not as viable transportation. Then I drove it and, well, enjoyed it enough to find one of my own a few months later.

Which classic vehicle have you been surprised with?

Photo Sources: Afshin Behnia, Low Tech MagazineFlickr

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CharlieMike PartinJanels KatlapsRay HoughtonCameron S Recent comment authors
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Charlie
Charlie

Trabant 601…

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Mike Partin
Mike Partin

1970 Fiat 500

Janels Katlaps
Janels Katlaps

Saab 900 Turbo.

Ray Houghton
Ray Houghton

It would be my 73 fiat spider. Not the fastest, primitive suspension, but that inline 4 dual overhead cam engine, and the five speed gearbox. I live in a remote area of Northern California, so that measure a lot of windy roads. It’s been a joy to drive. Parts are easily accessible, and there are even many upgrades still available. When I grew up many of my high school friends had Fiats, I was never very impressed. I wanted something with a big American V8, but there is something to said for small, light, and high revs. I’ve loved it… Read more »

CJ_Madson
CJ_Madson

’63 Mercury Meteor. Small 260 V-8 and two on the tree, but bronze over black, no B pillar and tons of chrome made for a cool ride during high school days and no danger of going way too fast. I even passed a guy once (slingshot move). Plus we could put the raft on top and tubes in the back for the lake. RIP, old girl — she got hit by a crazed moto rider but kept my sisters from getting hurt. I saved the chrome script from the trunk. Perfect car for teenage dude.

Steve Harris
Steve Harris

Austin Healey Sprite. Slow, no power, very crude suspension, but a great drive.

KevinCamp
KevinCamp

I had a 65 Sprite. Felt a hell of a lot faster than it really was. Close ratio gearbox meant it was pulling about 4500rpm at 60mph. Fun car.

Alberto Lemus
Alberto Lemus

Surprisingly great: old VW Bug. I drove one for about 6 months while I had it with me. It was a ’71.

By all means, the car is not special in anyway, but when you’re swarmed with electronic everything cars, it just felt incredibly satisfying to drive a mechanic-everything car.

Not very dependable, but incredibly easy to fix, not power to get you in any sort of trouble with the authority, and it actually felt torquey for a 1600 cc engine.

Maxime Veilleux
Maxime Veilleux

One of my personal favorite car along with the Mini for the adage : Slow car to drive fast.

Also its pretty polyvalent for a 30+ years old car.

Don’t expect to move furniture with it but a surprising number of boxes will fit in it.

Nicolas Moss
Nicolas Moss

Not exactly a classic, but I fell in love with our ’91 Toyota Previa. Dang, I miss that thing…

Darel Matthews
Darel Matthews

Seriously?

Cameron S
Cameron S

Nicolas, that’s cool. I actually sort of had something similar in mind – a Toyota Crown.

To the car fascists, look, it his opinion, not yours. Drive tastefully and act tastefully.