CCs in Israel: July-August 2022: Returnees & MOT(ee)s

Pontiac Trans-Am, Mercedes-Benz W201, Willys Pickup, Lincoln Convertible

Welcome to another edition of this series, in which I capture CCs and the like that roam the roads of Israel. These being summer months, not that many were found, so I’ll add an update on my personal fleet- yes, MOT test videos are here.


As usual, we start with the video:

First car captured was a 3rd gen Trans-Am, although I couldn’t give you exact model year, because the license plate just isn’t visible enough. I do see a “55” at the end, which makes this a recent import into Israel- very few examples were imported when new anyway. These are now becoming more common in the local classic commune, as more 3rd gen Firebirds arrive in the country. Previously it was the (very much coveted) 2nd gen that was to be found in any classic car meetups. Here are two 3rd gen examples, one of which appears to be a project:

Maroon Pontiac Firebird

1985 Maroon Gold Pontiac Firebird Trans Am

Next in the video you get a well-used 1962 Willys Pickup, one of the assembled locally units. I’ve already portrayed a Willys pickup here, and discussed the Israeli JEEP production here, so let’s continue to the next car.

You know, in various posts I keep saying that in my view, the best cars Mercedes-Benz ever produced were the W126 S-class and the two W123 & W124 E-class(es). Well, there’s also a fourth car, very similar and of the same era; the “baby Benz” W201 190E (or in this case, 190D). Like its bigger siblings, the 190 was also build like a rock, and used many engineering and safety features that would be MB’s templates in the 1980s, especially in the W124, that virtually looked like an enlarged W201. The featured car in the video is a late, 1990 model, and a Diesel at that, being a 190D. Once again this is a recent classic import, and looks great. At some point in the video it looked as if it’s a police car, having a blinking red & blue lights bar- but no, Israeli police cars aren’t that old. It’s just a Corolla police car driving behind the Benz. See two more randomly parked W201s, pictured previously:

Silver Mercedes-Benz W201 190D

1989 Silver Mercedes-Benz W201 190D

Onward in the video we come to our first “been here before” CC. I’ve captured this 1981 Chevy Blazer K5 2WD on dash-cam some five years ago. As said before- in a small classic car market that is Israel, you’re bound to stumble upon the same cars from time to time, which personally I’m glad about- it just means yet another classic is still roaming the streets and not off to the crusher. See this link for more.

Next up we have another returnee, from a recent “Car Show Classics” post. That Israeli assembled, special local market edition 1962 Willys Compact (as it was named in Israel) is apparently a well known participant at that event, so no wonder it’s visible- I captured it very near the meeting point discussed in that linked post (where more details regarding the Willys Compact are available).

And the last car of the video, is yet another returnee. This 1979 Lincoln Town Coupe Convertible was captured at the exact same spot as the previous time. But now it’s much more visible, as the last time was a murky day in March and now I’ve found it in late August. Plus the top was down. Anyway- had to include it, so there…

No still captures in this post, but by now I know some of you enjoy updates regarding my personal fleet; the Opel Astra and the Honda Civic Tourer, who, very inconveniently, had had their MOT tests done in July and August. Inconvenient, because it places some financial strain during those two months (what with the annual service both cars undergo besides the MOT tax). Add ‘orrible August, when the kids are on holiday (which means spending more money than usual), and you get the idea.

Still, if you must than you must, so on July, I duly went with the Astra for its MOT test:

This went on just like any other year, so I’ve kept the video short. The Audi ahead of me was included for a reason; as I was told by the tester, the owner replaced its engine but didn’t bother telling anyone about it or get the proper documents/permissions. Simply went in the line to have the Audi’s MOT test done. When the tester told him this involved more than just a regular run, the owner simply drove off (as you can see in the video). As the tester put it, that guy wasn’t really “with us”…

Now for the Honda’s MOT test. Because I’m also carrying a rear-facing dash-cam, I decided to include more, so you’ll get better view of what’s going on:

After checking the wipers and turn signals/headlights/break lights, the first tester opens the fifth door in search of the hazard triangle. Afterwards he went checking the engine number. The second tester is checking emissions, and you can see how it’s done on the car in front of me. I didn’t include the part where you’re supposed to keep constant 2500-3000 rpm- just say that the tester himself sat in the car and operated the gas pedal (apparently this is faster as the personnel are more accustomed in this procedure). Also, that’s me closing the bonnet (hood), because eventually they did not need to connect the OBD reader inside the engine bay, just used the one in the cabin. I decided it was better practice to have it closed shut.

Next up was front, rear and hand-brake tests, after which the Honda went over the pit to check for steering play. For some odd reason, they didn’t check for ball-joint’s play (you can see them do that on the Astra’s MOT video, when they lift the car up). Maybe they forgot, maybe they didn’t think it was necessary.

Anyway, on it went for headlights’ test, and as you can see the left low beam needed adjusting (you can see the tester coming to check in the cabin that the headlights’ height adjustment knob is set to zero, which it was). They do this free of charge, and that was the end of the test. I passed. Well, not me- the Honda. Isn’t it like having your children getting a good score on their GCSEs?

And that’s it for this post.