I'm about halfway through building the CC/Rambler. It's a '67 AMC Rambler American that is probably the closest thing to a dedicated drag car I have ever owned. While it is way cool to work on, I don't know how many more builds I have left in me. Looking back on some of my personal car history, it's easy to see why. You know what I'm talking about? See if any of this sounds like you.
'74 Dodge Dart Sport
This was my first car. By the time I was old enough to drive, all the cool V-8 stuff was getting expensive, so I ended up with a Slant Six. It was black with a white vinyl top and the hand-crank sunroof that would spill water on the passenger when you hit the brakes in the rain. A woman in a '72 Mustang Grande ended the Dart's life while I was making a right turn.
'77 Ford LTD II
This was the replacement for the Dart, courtesy of my dad and State Farm Insurance, after getting a couple of tickets and the wreck on my record. It was slow but probably the nicest car I've ever owned. It was a light-blue two-door with a silver stripe, a 302, and about 30,000 miles on it.
'74 Olds Omega
I secretly bought this car for $800 while working at a Chevy dealership in the summer, and it was the first car I modified. The first install was a B&M MegaShifter, then I painted a set of stripes on the hood. It was also the first and only car I wrecked badly, in a rainstorm in 1989.
'77 Chevy Camaro
I had it for two weeks before it was run over by an 18-wheeler. Really! Dead.
'68 Chevy El Camino
I was about to leave for college and had to decide between the LTD II and the freshly purchased, $1,800 Elco. Of course the El Camino won easily with its four-speed and 327-inch engine. It was my first car to drag race and add too much cam to, and it was my first engine rebuild that featured the short-block from my roommate's IMCA dirt-oval car. I made every mistake possible and went into the 13s. The LTD II money went to books or something.
'66 Ford Falcon
A very cool two-door sedan, the car was red on red with a six-cylinder engine and three on the tree. I dreamed of Cleveland power and a four-speed, then realized I was still in school. Got $300 for it.
'72 Datsun (Nissan) 240Z
I was curious about a car with factory sidedrafts. What can I say? It was small and fun to drive.
'78 Ford Bronco
After I was lured into the 4x4 scene, I bought a big, green-and-white truck with 33-inch tires, a 400-inch V-8, and an auto. It represented my first and only attempt at off-roading. It used a lot of gas, and once I got it stuck while crossing a swamp forcing me to swim through the guck with a 40-pound chain. I never figured out what the big deal was about off-roading, so I sold it.
'83 VW Scirocco
My friends were into the import scene early and made this one low and quick. I bought it totaled and learned paint and body firsthand. Sold it for books or something.
'66 Chevy Corvair Corsa convertible
This corpse never did anything but sit and look cool. It had four carbs and a four-speed with Corsa parts rusted to it. It was only worth something to a hard-core Corvair guy. He towed it away for me.
'74 Mercedes 240D
My second paint-and-body project. Guess how much Benzo parts cost. A lot.
'85 Chevy Corvette
I've told this story already. Let me recap: expensive Tuned Port car that landed me a wife and likely this here job.
'91 Chevy Camaro Z28
My first crack at real performance with nitrous, then a blower, then a 383. Then I put it all together and made 525 hp and 600 lb-ft at the wheel with smog-compliant exhaust gas numbers.
'67 AMC Rambler American
(the CC/Rambler) So here I am. The Rambler is the only thing cooler than the '69 Road Runner that I am going to buy next. Anyone got one? -Douglas R. Glad
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