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(MSN)   A sampling of American cars, back when size mattered. The 200-inch club   (msn.com) divider line
    More: Giggity, Rear wheel drive vehicles, Chevrolet Caprice, Chevrolet Impala, Coupes, Lincoln Continental, Sedans, 1970s automobiles, Cadillac  
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5209 clicks; posted to Main » on 24 Nov 2021 at 3:20 PM (2 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



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2021-11-24 3:05:18 PM  
I think I can say I love every one of these.  1980 Plymouth Gran Fury is a little "meh" but otherwise... yes!

Even station wagons I don't care what anyone thinks.
 
2021-11-24 3:11:47 PM  
I learned to drive in a 1976 T-Bird, in a town where parallel parking was essential.  I can parallel park anything.

And I miss land yachts to this day.
 
2021-11-24 3:26:03 PM  

downstairs: I think I can say I love every one of these.  1980 Plymouth Gran Fury is a little "meh" but otherwise... yes!

Even station wagons I don't care what anyone thinks.


station wagons rule.
 
2021-11-24 3:28:23 PM  
Americans like big vehicles.
CAFE mileage standards forced cars to become smaller.
Americans accepted this as necessary starting buying big trucks.
 
2021-11-24 3:28:47 PM  
I still remember driving my grandma's old giant car down to the corner store in small town Saskatchewan to buy myself ice cream and .22 bullets when I was around 9 or 10. The adults knew I couldn't see over the steering wheel and reach the gas pedal at the same time, so my speed was governed by my desire to see out the windows.
 
2021-11-24 3:30:06 PM  

Benevolent Misanthrope: I learned to drive in a 1976 T-Bird, in a town where parallel parking was essential.  I can parallel park anything.

And I miss land yachts to this day.


I learned to drive in a 66 Ford Galaxy 500, and took my driving test in a 76 Ford Caprice, just like the one in the slideshow.  Nailed the parallel parking on the first try.

I can't believe my parents turned me loose on the world in a V8, not once but twice.
 
2021-11-24 3:30:07 PM  
My first car was a '78 Continental MkV.  Farkin thing had doors bigger than my wife's Hyundai.  Four barrel carbureted 460, gas shocks.  It went from 0-60 in about a minute and a half, and from 60 to Hoooooolllleeeee Shiiiiiiiaaaaat in about three seconds.  8MPG if I was lucky.

My first job had me in a massive station wagon.  I loved that thing, too.

Big comfortable cars are something I like, and rarely even see, let alone own these days.
 
2021-11-24 3:30:12 PM  
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Everything old is new again. An Escalade starts at 6" longer.
 
TWX
2021-11-24 3:30:30 PM  
That Charger shares the late B-platform with the Chysler Cordoba.  They're nearly identical, just some superficial exterior trim and some interior options differ.  The Cordoba was sold as:

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2021-11-24 3:30:53 PM  
We need these to come back.  Just without the big gas-guzzling engines.  You can pack a whoooooole lot of battery into the floor of a land yacht.  Big car with poor aero only affects range - which you can overcome with big battery.  The time is right for a return of the American Boat.
 
2021-11-24 3:32:32 PM  
1970 Mercury Monterey Convertible
221.8 inches
390 V8
It was my first car. You can fit six adults in it easily without touching. It's been sitting in my sisters barn in Georgia for the last 20 years waiting for somebody to bring it back to its glory
 
2021-11-24 3:32:50 PM  
My dad still says this was the best car he ever owned.  1984 Ford Crown Vic Wagon.

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we hauled lumber, pulled boats, trailers, used it as scaffolding, all three of us boys learned to drive with it and dad ran it for years after, until the body literately started falling off. seriously, at the end when he would shut the door a rust and paint would fall off and leave a body outline on the ground.  the power train and frame were still in excellent shape.
 
TWX
2021-11-24 3:33:23 PM  

Erebus1954: Americans like big vehicles.
CAFE mileage standards forced cars to become smaller.
Americans accepted this as necessary starting buying big trucks.


I do own a truck, but my car is 214" long and it was made in 1995.
 
2021-11-24 3:34:29 PM  
I owned a 1971 Plymouth Fury Gran Coupe 4 door, you could land F-16s on the hood and it had a trunk which could hold five bodies with ease.  Ugly, huge, lousy MPG, yet quite useful for taking a young lady out for the evening.
 
2021-11-24 3:35:39 PM  

Erebus1954: Americans like big vehicles.
CAFE mileage standards forced cars to become smaller.
Americans accepted this as necessary starting buying big trucks.


F150 has been the best selling vehicle for like 30 years
 
2021-11-24 3:36:02 PM  
static.wikia.nocookie.netView Full Size
 
2021-11-24 3:39:43 PM  
Americans have also liked smaller, reliable, better-performing vehicles that got more than 12 mpg. Just look at the success of the Japanese and now Korean makers. Some of these look OK, but that's a hot mess of malaise-era sadness. I learned how to drive in that crap. I bet every single one of them still left has a sagging headliner.
 
2021-11-24 3:40:10 PM  
Passed my drivers test including parallel parking in a massive station wagon.  Had a '72 Le Sabre in the 80's.  It was great for running down obnoxious teens in the Burger King parking lot.  Everything happened waaaay down there at the end of the hood.
 
2021-11-24 3:40:38 PM  
Friend of mine had one of those:

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I went with his family on vacation in it when I first came to Canada.

The car I drove immediately before that:

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The contrast was... interesting.
 
2021-11-24 3:41:04 PM  
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2021-11-24 3:41:47 PM  

downstairs: I think I can say I love every one of these.  1980 Plymouth Gran Fury is a little "meh" but otherwise... yes!

Even station wagons I don't care what anyone thinks.


1980 Plymouth Gran Fury: 220.2"

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1977 Buick LeSabre: 218.2"
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Same car? Gran fury engine was smaller than the LeSabre. But the latter was my first. It was great for piling 8 or so people in the front and back bench seats for going around town. Also great for 2 for drive-in movies i never watched (cough).
 
2021-11-24 3:43:08 PM  
Drove one of these for a while in high school.

cdn.carbuzz.comView Full Size
 
2021-11-24 3:43:55 PM  
Size doesn't matter anymore? Oh thank God! Hey ladies.......
 
2021-11-24 3:44:19 PM  

drjekel_mrhyde: [Fark user image image 784x408]


Is the top speed enough to break wind, though?

/what a god awful guilty pleasure movie as a youngin
 
2021-11-24 3:44:37 PM  
The bench seats in those cars were great for napping while you waited for the tow-truck to arrive.

'What seems to be the problem?'

'It rained - and this is a Plymouth.'

'Say no more.'
 
2021-11-24 3:44:54 PM  
I rode on the hood of a Lincoln Continental Mark IV of a guy tried to shake me off when he tried to get away.  It was quite roomy and had good hands holds.
 
2021-11-24 3:46:15 PM  

downstairs: I think I can say I love every one of these.  1980 Plymouth Gran Fury is a little "meh" but otherwise... yes!

Even station wagons I don't care what anyone thinks.


The one old car I would love to restore and drive would be our old Vista Cruiser station wagon.
 
2021-11-24 3:47:47 PM  
My grandfather had a 1974 (?) Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham, which he proudly reminded everyone was the longest production car ever made.*

I learned to drive in that thing, including parallel park.  (I was disappointed when parallel parking was NOT on the driving test.)

That thing had so much interior space, you could add furniture into it.  The trunk was the size of a small apartment.

__
*Take that claim with a grain of salt -- this was the same man who bought us beer during driving lessons, telling us "If you can't drive drunk, you can't drive."
 
2021-11-24 3:48:16 PM  
deslided
Well, they do their best.
 
2021-11-24 3:52:50 PM  

2wolves: I owned a 1971 Plymouth Fury Gran Coupe 4 door, you could land F-16s on the hood and it had a trunk which could hold five bodies with ease.  Ugly, huge, lousy MPG, yet quite useful for taking a young lady out for the evening.


I had a 75 Gran Fury. Looked just like the Bluesmobile from the Blues Brothers, just without the Cop Engine.

First car was a 71 Plymouth Satellite. Those were fun cars but they sure didn't have a lot of muscle. Good on the freeway, though.
 
2021-11-24 3:54:48 PM  
Dad had an ivory 1966 Catalina that I got to occasionally appropriate for weekend use before I owned a car.  I nicknamed it "The Boat" for obvious reasons.  214.80 inches of wee!

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2021-11-24 3:55:35 PM  
My first car was a 1966 Buick Elektra. It was a monstrous piece of crap but was a comfortable ride on the highway. The first time I parked it in the small garage at my first house I was initially horrified to find out that I couldn't close the garage door with the car in there. By carefully centering the car I found I actually could shut the door, with about five inches between front bumper and wall and back bumper and door. The beast was good for hauling though, I brought home all the shingles to re-shingle the garage by piling the bundles in the back and trunk. The rear end of the car was riding so low that the headlights were shining on trees instead of the highway on my way home from the lumber yard and I had to drive slowly on the side of the highway because I couldn't go at normal speed like that. The thing got me where I wanted or needed to go but I did not miss the car after I moved on to a different one.
 
2021-11-24 4:00:40 PM  
My grandfather was a LeSabre man...

'76
'83
'89
'97
'93 (after he totaled the '97 running a red light age 89 or so)

That first one, though...what a boat.
 
TWX
2021-11-24 4:02:40 PM  

Petey4335: downstairs: I think I can say I love every one of these.  1980 Plymouth Gran Fury is a little "meh" but otherwise... yes!

Even station wagons I don't care what anyone thinks.

1980 Plymouth Gran Fury: 220.2"

[Fark user image 425x239]

1977 Buick LeSabre: 218.2"
[Fark user image 425x318]

Same car? Gran fury engine was smaller than the LeSabre. But the latter was my first. It was great for piling 8 or so people in the front and back bench seats for going around town. Also great for 2 for drive-in movies i never watched (cough).


Not same cars.

Both do happen to follow a design mentality that originated with what Cadillac did with the 1975 Seville, but was probably well underway in design from the other car companies before Cadillac got theirs out first.

That Plymouth shares its underpinnings with the Charger.  Same torsion bars, sway bars, front subframes, and box-structure "rails".  Sheet metal doesn't really interchange but just about everything mechanical does.
 
2021-11-24 4:04:01 PM  

TWX: That Charger shares the late B-platform with the Chysler Cordoba.  They're nearly identical, just some superficial exterior trim and some interior options differ.  The Cordoba was sold as:

[Fark user image image 850x1151]


KHAAAAN!!!!
 
TWX
2021-11-24 4:07:59 PM  

I just lurk here: TWX: That Charger shares the late B-platform with the Chysler Cordoba.  They're nearly identical, just some superficial exterior trim and some interior options differ.  The Cordoba was sold as:

[Fark user image image 850x1151]

KHAAAAN!!!!


First time I pulled up at a meeting of the Star Trek club I used to be in after getting my Cordoba, I kept getting jokes made that I had no idea about.  Dad had found the car for me, on his advice I'd only had liability on the truck that was stolen from me.  At this point I had basically zero mechanical interest in cars, I liked them but I didn't know anything about them mechanically.
 
2021-11-24 4:10:28 PM  

Benevolent Misanthrope: I learned to drive in a 1976 T-Bird, in a town where parallel parking was essential.  I can parallel park anything.

And I miss land yachts to this day.


Yep.  I learned on a 1969 Custom 500 2-door.  213.9 inches long, from what I can find on line.  Never had/drove a regular car that big again.  Can parallel park anything, too.
 
2021-11-24 4:12:38 PM  
And here it is.  Note the studded snow tires.

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2021-11-24 4:16:15 PM  

cherryl taggart: Benevolent Misanthrope: I learned to drive in a 1976 T-Bird, in a town where parallel parking was essential.  I can parallel park anything.

And I miss land yachts to this day.

I learned to drive in a 66 Ford Galaxy 500, and took my driving test in a 76 Ford Caprice, just like the one in the slideshow.  Nailed the parallel parking on the first try.

I can't believe my parents turned me loose on the world in a V8, not once but twice.


76 Ford Caprice

76 Ford Caprice

Ford...  CAPRICE...   Yo say whut?
 
2021-11-24 4:18:04 PM  
First car I was able to drive: Dad's 1974 Merc station wagon

First car that was "mine": 1962 Falcon station wagon.

Go figure.
 
TWX
2021-11-24 4:18:18 PM  
This is my daily driver when I'm not driving my pickup truck:

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2021-11-24 4:18:50 PM  

hammettman: Dad had an ivory 1966 Catalina that I got to occasionally appropriate for weekend use before I owned a car.  I nicknamed it "The Boat" for obvious reasons.  214.80 inches of wee!

[Fark user image 767x417]


Lovely!
 
2021-11-24 4:19:45 PM  
Holy hell the mid to late 70's and very early 80's was a grim period for American car design.
 
2021-11-24 4:20:08 PM  
1971 Buick Riviera:
A 'Full-Flo' ventilation system, with a habit of sucking exhaust fumes and rain water into the cabin, probably didn't endear the Rivera to customers either
.

I LOL'd.
 
2021-11-24 4:21:22 PM  
225", and far more flamboyant than anything on that slideshow:

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2021-11-24 4:21:32 PM  
americandreamcars.comView Full Size


My first car was this one although mine was yellow with a brown vinyl top. It was 209" I cant belive AMC didnt get any love in TFA. Damn I wish I could find one again it would be my mid-life crisis mobile.
 
TWX
2021-11-24 4:21:34 PM  

AntonChigger: Holy hell the mid to late 70's and very early 80's was a grim period for American car design.


Yes.  Many refer to it as the Malaise Era.

my Cordoba had something like 150 horsepower out of a 360ci engine, it was so detuned and low compression.  When it was new.  By the time I got it, it was much lower than that.
 
2021-11-24 4:25:12 PM  
A lot of these cars we pieces of shiat under the skin but the styling was amazing on some. Especially the Pontiacs.
 
TWX
2021-11-24 4:25:35 PM  

Joe Peanut: 225", and far more flamboyant than anything on that slideshow:

[Fark user image 850x566]
[Fark user image 850x566]
[Fark user image 850x566]


Yes, but I think TFA implies the last gasp of the large cars.  This was made when that size was not considered especially abnormal.

Don't forget that Cadillac and other brands had commercial chassis models, usually sold as ambulances and hearses, that some chassis builders converted into station wagons.
 
2021-11-24 4:29:17 PM  
I'm confused. I was always told that the early 70s was the peak for Big Car; the gas crisis plus federal regulations caused cars to shrink drastically in the second half of the 70s. But a good chunk of the land yachts on that list are mid-late 70s. Could someone explain?
 
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