CC Outtake: 1966 Chevrolet Corvair Monza Convertible – Things Go Better With Coke

I’ve noted previously that October is really “high convertible season” in the San Francisco Bay Area. As Friday slides into Saturday Brunches and Farmers Markets, the first weekend of October won’t disappoint with forecast highs cracking 90 degrees all the way to the beach. It shouldn’t be surprising that I encountered this soft drink of a soft top beckoning at me from the curbside; begging for one more frolic before the days grow too short to provide much heat.

Even in locales where the sun is setting earlier and there’s the need to pull a light sweater out of the closet for top down motoring, the joys of packing a convertible and taking in a bit of Fall color has plenty of appeal. Maybe it’s time to go picking apples “upstate” and getting fresh cider? Perhaps an excursion to a pumpkin patch? Wherever the destination, let’s put the top down, grab a few bottles of Coke and a map. There’s  somewhere that will be changing from lush green to the rich earthen tones of yellow, orange and red against crisp blue skies.

Truth be told, a Corvair Convertible might not be the most ideal machine for hauling a bunch of people AND pumpkins. If your ambition is apples, they’ll have an interesting tumbling sound as they fall out of bags with every saw of the steering wheel in the front trunk of this Monza. However it would be a more pleasurable, thrilling drive than some more plodding options should you decide to take the country two lane instead of the interstate to and ‘fro on your pleasure drives this autumn.


Some would say that it isn’t the most American of choices to do these most American of Fall activities. I’d retort that there’s a far more diverse reality in regards to what constitutes Americana. Sure, it would be pretty typical to do such journeys in a Mustang, Thunderbird or Cadillac convertible of a similar vintage. Chances are those choices would be far less thrifty, sprightly and well “fizzy” as the well-sorted 2nd Generation Corvair. I’d probably tell you to leave The Beatles off the iPod plugged into the adapter hidden in the glovebox as well. It’s the 50 year anniversary of The Supremes starting their historic run of #1 hits.  For a bit of campy schmaltz, I’d probably point you to one of their endearing Coca-Cola jingles to go alongside your bottle Coke with cane sugar.

Just like the joy bursting to fill you up inside a Coca-Cola bottle, this Corvair can barely contain itself in the parking space it finds itself in. Like an authentic sugar cane bottled coke, Corvairs are still relatively reasonable and accessible 1960’s Classic cars. They’ll (for better and/or worse) will never command the high dollar value or gain as much respect as their peers from the same years.



Are you ready to give in yet? Even I forgot about the joys that can accompany a Coca-Cola and someone cozying up to you at a Fall Football game. Nothing removes the taste of stadium hot dogs and stale popcorn like a Coca-Cola either. As you exit the stadium towards sunset, drop the top on a Turbo Air 110 Corvair and hear the rumble of 6 horizontally opposed cylinders. You’ll hum along as they thrust you along underneath a soon to be full moon and twinkling stars. It will make you care far less about whether your team won or loss.

‘ve done my best Peggy Olson to sell you on this California Dream on our collective internet morning paper. I may not have sold you, but I’ve surely sold myself. I do believe that I’ll be grabbing a coke, a cheeseburger and a Corvair to head off somewhere far to contemplate the past 10 months of life. Fall is about reflections of the way life used to be, after all.