While the 1973 Dodge Polara is arguably the scene stealer here, this shot by tbm3fan captures a scene that could have been found in countless places in North America – in the 1970s.
Here’s a cropped version to better ingest all this goodness.
Well then. This must be an occurrence comparable to finding a perfectly formed pearl inside of an oyster. My personal favorite is the 1968-1970 Mercury Monterey in the very back, as that is the sort of car my grandfather would own.
The Mercury is a 1967 – it has a slightly curved beltline while displaying the fake front fender vents.
Well *almost* anywhere in America. In my upper midwestern climate there would have been some brown splotches along the lower parts of the back three by the time the 73 Dodge was in service.
As an aside, I was always fascinated by the styling of that final fuselage Dodge. The lower character line that ended in the upward kink in the rear door was something I found attractive. Or maybe just distinctive. I wonder how many people back then noticed that none of the body sheetmetal was shared between the Dodge and Plymouth. It seems like that unique fuselage shape made them all look alike.
And aren’t those Dodge wheel covers from an earlier model?
Yup- my ’69 Polara had those.
Here in southern Indiana the Mustang, and especially the Ford pickup, would have sprouted at least some surface rust by 1973 or so. I too have always had a soft spot in my heart for the fuselage Chryslers, even knowing that the build quality on them was spotty at best. I keep a mental Power Ball list of cars I would buy if I ever won a bunch of money in a lottery; a fuselage Chrysler is currently in second place, right behind a 1965-66 GM ‘B’ body two door hardtop.
As much as I love the Fuselage Dodges, especially the Polaras, for me the “scene stealer” is that ’65 Ford Pickup. What a great color combination!
Was this a test?
Although this picture is positively dripping with CC goodness, I call BS on 1974. What’s that silver CamCord looking thing with the aero mirror in the driveway behind the Mercury? 😉
Now darn it you were supposed to be so enamored with the front four you wouldn’t see that silver lump in the background.
Ha! I knew you were up to no good, but it was great fun!
As my prize, may I have a ride in that Mercury? 🙂
Not the suburbia that I grew up in, for sure. In suburban NYC, I would have never, EVER seen a pickup truck of any sort. Period.
Pickup trucks were for farmers, not suburbanites. The closest thing I saw to a pickup in my neighborhood were F-350 stake side flatbeds, owned and driven by people who maintained the lovely suburban lawns.
Tradesmen – plumbers, carpenters, painters, etc. all drove Econolines. Never a pickup.
Times may not have changed that much. Several years ago I was walking through a parking lot with me then-10-year-old niece. Her family lived in the Northern New Jersey suburbs, and were down here visiting.
I mentioned to her something like “I’m parked over there next to that pickup truck” — to which she responded “What’s a pickup truck?” I found that the be hilarious.
I grew up in a working class neighborhood in a small town in Kentucky. I was born in 1951 and up through the sixties people just did not use trucks as personal transportation. The only pickup I can remember on our block belonged to Mr. Gish across the street. He was a painting contractor and had an early fifties Ford truck he used to haul his compressor, ladders and whatever else he needed. Mr. Gish painted a lot of barns and there were dozens, if not hundreds, of coats of barn red paint on the Ford covering up the rust. The truck was strictly for work, he bought a new Chevy every two or three years and that was his vehicle of choice for everything but work.
Does a collector live nearby?
House I lived in from ’62-’67. I drove by in the mid 2000’s and took this snapshot. Looks like it was taken back in the day.
Hey, tbm3fan, it’s great to see a photo of the fleet! I’m still hoping to see the Polara in person some day, especially the interior.
And…is that “silver lump” in the background your Focus?
The Mustang looks like a twin to my grandfathers ‘67 Mustang when I was a kid. I was crushed when he traded it in for a ‘72 Mercury Comet.
Those four cars span an acquisition range from 1984-2009. They have always been covered and the Mustang is only outside as I am trying to diagnose an engine in a 1998 Sable in the garage. Consequently they have never been all uncovered at one time ever much less seen like this. They are like this because two trees in the front yard were being trimmed and the driveway had to be clear for two days. I could barely handle two days uncovered on the street.
When I came home the second evening and turned the corner I saw what is seen above. It hit me that I might not see this again because it is a PIA getting them all out at once so I took the shot. The only absentee is the 68 Cougar in the garage.
To be noted the Mercury is a Park Lane where I have been working on replacing the entire front suspension. Might do an article on how that work went. The car has cornering lights instead of fake vents. Oh, the Park Lane with 410 drives very nice. New tires coming next week.
The Polara is wearing 1969 Polara wheel covers. One, they are far more sporty looking than the 1973 flat dish covers which had black centers. This being a Spring Special Dodge meant the centers were red instead and are extremely rare. After popping on off on the freeway, and seeing it roll across three lanes of traffic missing everything I decided to store them. The one that flew off I found two days later by driving back and forth over the stretch looking for them. After six tries I located it against the center divider, drove the car slowly in the #1 lane at 2 am in the morning, opened the door, leaned out, and grabbed the cover with my free hand.
No, Dennis, that is a gold Corolla in the background with the standard Toyota large dent in the corner of the bumper cover.
Thank you for taking this picture. Like you, seeing this picture on the cohort was simply too good to not allow more people to see it.
All look great, but the Polara really speaks the loudest – and that is coming from a die-hard full-sized Mercury fan.
Those 72-73 Dodge wheelcovers were runners. A friend’s dad bought a new 73 Royal Sportsman van that came with the same wheelcovers used on Polaras. The first one flew off within weeks (as I recall it). After 3 or 4 months he gave up trying to keep them on the van and bought some slotted aluminum wheels and a set of white letter Goodrich T/As for it.
Should note that on the morning of the third day, which I had off, I had to wash all four cars. During those hours numerous neighbors, from around the corner who only saw covers, stopped by to talk about the cars and what they once had. Most were between 70-85 and so I learned about their hotrods back in the 50’s. They were indeed all reminiscing.
I did learn that four blocks away that there was a 1961 Caddy under a cover parked in the driveway. Then just last week the car was uncovered and was it ever gorgeous and pristine. The husband died with three Cadillacs and his wife saved just the one which she has refused to sell despite numerous offers.
Similar to Eric 703’s comment: In ’92 I went from northwest Indiana to Wyoming in a 1979 Bronco. My cousin, who was 3 or 4, saw the Bronco, and with a horrified look on her face said, “What’s wrong with it?” She had never seen rust before. Thought it had a contagious disease or something. On that 1500 mile drive I was always with a bunch of motorcycles going to Sturgis. Fun drive back in the day, except for the 10 mpg gas use!
Fun scene of your cars on display, but not anything like my neighborhood in the 1970’s. Los Angeles beach suburbs were full of imports and vans. The Mustang and pickup would be there, but definitely not the Merc. The Polara might be a ratty surplus CHP car. There would be a Toyota in the driveway, probably a Corolla wagon.
It’s interesting how much popular white was for a car color back then. Now they would all be a shade of gray.
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