Anywhere else, these cars might be “thin on the ground.” But in the Pacific Northwest, there are still some around. Whether it’s because of our relative lack of road-salting, or our sky high cost of living, PNWers hold onto old cars. I drive a rust-free ’92 Honda Accord because I have to, but others here drive the same car because they can. What follows is random look at some rare cars that populate my dog-walking route. There is absolutely no rhyme or reason here, just like the crazy-ass times we are living through.
The sobering look on this ’67 Chevelle captures the defiance we all have for the coming apocalypse. This rat-rod 2-door has British Columbia plates and is missing some teeth, but was capable of conveying its owner from one country to another. At least it was a few weeks ago when the borders were still open. The “250” badge on the front fender means it has an inline 6, which will live forever if treated right. My first car was a ’66 Chevelle Malibu, so this one made me all misty.
Let’s go back to the future with this Z-car Delorean look-alike. No longer a fair lady, this old Datsun is in rough shape. Someone has stripped out the interior and then stacked all the loose parts inside. Time (travel) has not been kind to this T-Top.
The lime-green rims could be a nod to the Seattle Seahawks, whose licensing rights might be baked into the $2300 asking price. Any takers?
Affectionately known as the “Deuce and a Quarter,” this 1965 Buick Electra 225 has been parked in the same spot for years. Said to be 18-feet long and only capable of 10 mpg, this top-of-the-line beauty probably came equipped with the 401 V-8. This lovely specimen deserves better than to sit out in the rain!
When was the last time you saw a solid 6- or 7-gen Toyota Corolla wagon? Up here they all seem to be owned by retired schoolteachers with an earthy, liberal bent. Most of these wagons feature earnest bumper stickers relating to the arts, the environment, or Eastern forms of self-improvement.
This sporty blue wagon has the 5-speed transmission and a roof rack. It is parked at a house I lived in 35 years ago, in the same spot where I used to put my ’67 VW van.
This little red wagon skews more toward the end of 7-gens, with a slightly more rounded, bulbous look. I think a Hawaiian food restaurant uses it for deliveries.
You hardly ever see old Toyota wagons this nice, even though this one appears to have wheel-covers from J.C. Whitney.
Here’s one I had never seen on the ground: a mid-’80s Chevy Sprint 3-door hatchback. This little thrasher was parked in front of our downtown post office.
Something makes me think this little Sprint is used for delivering mail on a rural route. Based on the Suzuki Cultus, it sports a 1.0 L 3-cylinder engine.
I have a soft-spot for old Mazda pickups, having once owned an ’86 B-2000. My old Sundowner was tough as nails and fun to drive. Looks like this early ’90s B-2200 extended cab is still earning its keep.
For the life of me, I can’t understand why car-makers abandoned this segment of the market. Seems like if there was a newer equivalent to the small pickup, people would be all over it.
Lastly we have a mid-’80s Volkswagen Jetta, all the way down from Alaska. By the looks of the license plate, it must be a diesel. This rig was not on my regular dog-walking route, but in Old Town near the Antique Mall.
In the background you can see our old City Hall, built in 1892 and now home to the Whatcom County Museum. So, once we all make it through the apocalypse, come on up and visit Bellingham, Washington, where old cars are never thin on the ground.