(first posted 4/18/2012) Since 1958, the Impala had been Chevrolet’s top of the line model. When Ford added the luxurious LTD package to the Galaxie 500 for the 1965 model year, Chevy quickly responded with the Caprice. Both nameplates started out as a luxury trim level but would become full-fledged models in short order.
As Paul related in his 1965 Ford LTD CC, the Great Brougham Epoch was a new direction in the Big Three’s top of the line models. While the Galaxie and Impala had previously been considered rather sporty in top-trim guise, the new direction was Brougham-tastic. Vinyl roofs, ‘luxury’ wheel covers, acres of Di-Noc wood trim on instrument panels and doors, and a hearty helping of extra sound insulation were the key ingredients. And thus was the Caprice introduced in 1965 as an interior and exterior decor package for the Impala Sport Sedan.
Despite costing $200 more than the regular Impala Sport Sedan, the Caprice Custom Sedan option package (RPO Z-18) was immediately popular. Special exterior touches included slim chrome body sill moldings, unique wheel covers, black-accented grille and rear trim panel, Caprice scripts on the front fenders and fleur de lis emblems on the sail panel. Inside, interiors featured patterned fabric with expanded vinyl trim and simulated wood on the doors and instrument panel ‘with the look of hand-rubbed walnut’, according to the brochure.
The new trim level was so well received that it became its own model for 1966, and became Chevy’s ultimate full-size nameplate. The four-door hardtop was still available, but it was joined by a new Custom Coupe with unique formal roofline, and six- and nine-passenger station wagons – with simulated wood paneling, of course.
All Caprices came with a standard 2-barrel 283 V8 with 195 hp. Engine choices were very extensive, ranging from a 225 hp Turbo Fire 283 to the stump-pulling, 425 hp Turbo Jet 427. All it took was cash and checking the right box on the order form.
1966 Caprices once again had a more luxurious interior than the Impala, with tonier upholstery and carpeted lower sections on the door panels. Outside, all Caprices had color-keyed body striping, new wide chrome rocker moldings, new wheel covers, tail lights with horizontal chrome louvers, and the requisite Caprice identification.
Coupes could be had with all-vinyl upholstery, floor shift and a woodgrained console for those who wanted a dash of sportiness in their luxury Chevrolet. Caprice coupes were priced at $3000 to start ($21,240 adjusted) but could easily go much higher with the right options. Despite the additional cost over an Impala, Caprice did even better for ’66 with 181,000 built (excluding wagons). The Caprice was here to stay, for another thirty years at least.
This Caprice appears to have been sitting for quite a while, but it still shows off its attractive lines, even in its current state. It must have been quite a nice ride when new. Hopefully someone will see its potential and bring it back to life. Nice thing about Chevys – parts are so easy to find, and a resto-mod ’66 Caprice with an LS1 would be a great way to see the USA in 2012.
Related: CC: 1965 Chevrolet Caprice: The LTD Reaction PN
We only got Impalas new 4 doors 283 motor that was it local assembly didnt encompass the whole range and despite a Chev that was less well appointed than a Holden Premier or Vauxhall Cresta it was the top of the local GM tree.
I have mixed feelings about these. “Ooohh look – a luxury car with a Powerglide!” Chevrolet was really playing follow-the-leader behind Ford in the 1960s, and was certainly willing to spend money to do it, as shown by the special coupe roofline that was used for a single year. I will say that they did a nice job on the interiors. A friend of my mom had a 68 Caprice, and it was very nice inside.
But i still see this car as Exhibit A of GM losing its way. The proper response to the LTD should have been “let us show you this nice Pontiac or Oldsmobile. It’s a shame that Ford owners have to settle for a Ford as a luxury car.” But no. Chevy dealers would scream for a defensive weopon, and nobody at GM would argue with them.
I will also say that I still consider the 66 Chevy to be one of the most beautiful cars of the 1960s. But looking at this one, I still like the rooflines of the 4 doors and of the regular Impala 2 door better. We had neighbors with a 66 Impala 4 door hardtop in navy blue with that silver-blue interior. It was a beautiful car.
The same criticism could be leveled at the Plymouth VIP, and rightly so. A luxury Plymouth?
Even worse because they were being sold in the same showrooms as Chrysler Newports. Lynn Townsend’s Chrysler Corporation was even more dedicated to “Follow the Leader” than was GM in those years. Only Chrysler usually got to it later. Actually, I am surprised that the VIP was ready by 1966. The more typical Mopar practice would have been to bring it out about 1968, 2 or 3 years after Ford and Chevy did it.
Interestingly, the Plymouth VIP didn’t affect sales of the full-size Chryslers at all.
Despite sharing showroom space, both the full-size Plymouths and Chryslers sold very well during the mid- and late-1960s. Chrysler Division was regularly setting sales records after 1964. The Fury bounced back nicely from the low point of 1961-62. The laggard was the full-size Dodge, which was the also-ran of the Chrysler C-body cars.
Even worse, Dodge’s sales strength was with compacts and intermediates, while Plymouth’s sales strength was with the Fury series. The Dart and Coronet regularly outsold the Valiant and Belvedere, but the Fury trounced the Polara/Monaco. Dodge, which should have been positioned as the medium-price marque, was selling better in the low-price segments! That dynamic utlimately led to the demise of Plymouth.
Incomes were rising steadily in the mid sixties, and many folks who otherwise bought Impalas now bought Caprices (and LTDs and VIPs). It was just a classic case of “bracket creep”. Folks love something new, the Impala had been around for a while, $200 was a cheap way to stay ahead of the neighbors…it was as good as inevitable.
And the Turbo-Hydramatic was available with the 396.
Aside from keeping up with the neighbors, Road Test noted that the Caprice package did wonders for resale value. They pointed out that you would generally get the extra cost back when you sold the car, which was not necessarily the case with the Impala SS at the time.
As a side note, THM was also available with the 427.
I think AUWM has it right about the Plymouth VIP. Caprices weren’t in showrooms next to 88s, LeSabres, or Catalinas the way VIPs were next to Newports.
It’d be hard to sell a Plymouth sedan, even one that was reasonably well equipped, with a similarly priced Newport right next to it.
I wondered what if Plymouth had used another nameplate instead of VIP like for example; Belmont? (name used for a show car in 1954) If things would had been different?
I doubt it — I think the problem was that the VIP was sold next to the Chrysler Newport, which cost only a few dollars more, had the 383-2V standard, and had more snob appeal. A Caprice may have competed with an Olds 88 or Buick LeSabre, but in those days, Chevy dealers didn’t usually sell Oldsmobiles or Buicks.
My parents had an Impala of this vintage that I vaguely remember as a toddler. I have no idea what size engine. I remember hearing a high pitched howling noise when the engine was idling and the automatic transmission was in Park. Later in high school in the early 80s, I heard that same noise again in the school parking lot and someone told me it was the normal sound of a two speed Powerglide. So for all of you who know the Powerglide, is that true?
Yes. Our 1965 Bel Air station wagon made that same high-pitched whine while idling.
I would describe the noise as halfway between a whine and a whirring. Yes, it was the normal sound of a Powerglide in park. My family’s 64 Cutlass with the 2 speed Jetaway made the same sound, but I understand that it was related to the Powerglide (if not actually the same thing.)
You may have also noticed the very audible “clack clack clack” that you could hear from outside the car when the driver shifted a PG from park to drive (or just “clack clack” from reverse to drive.) We had neighbors with a 64 Impala and a 66 Impala, and I heard that noise from my driveway multiple times a day as a kid.
Thank you for dredging up forgotten automotive sounds of my youth.
And thank you sir for your great articles and posts. That’s why I enjoy CC. I learn so much and get to have fun and relax. When I’m in the mood for testy arguments and one-up-man-ship intellectualism I’ll go to TTAC, which I find myself doing less lately.
Beginning with the availability of the 1965 Caprice Sports Sedan was the option of the Turbo Hydramatic 400 with a 396/325hp powertrain, along with an optional AMFM 4SPKR stereo(again, introduced at the same time), this was a veritable Olds or Buick for hundreds less. Officially just a trim package of the Impala, actually the sweetest Chevrolet sedan you could buy. I was a Ford devotee back then, but I wanted a fully-loaded ’65 Caprice really bad, and still do today.
Wow. Is this the first written observation of the GMLIW (GM Loses Its Way) trope? From 11 years later, JP astounds!
The coupe roof survived through 1968, and was expanded to an Impala Custom model for 1968.
The roof survived through 1968, and expanded to an Impala Custom model that same year.
I’m partial to the 1967, this was my grandfather’s car in the color scheme he had.
First of all, let it be known that I hate, and have ALWAYS hated the name “Caprice”. It never made any sense to me, since “Impala” is simply the greatest model name for a car ever created.
Perhaps I feel that way ever since dad brought home the 1960 Impala sports sedan that I eventually learned to drive in, but was anchored securely in my heart when he replaced that with the stunningly beautiful fire-engine red 1966 Impala Sports Sedan he and mom bought in Feb. 1968, that I was privileged to drive home from Johnny Londoff Chevrolet! I’ve told that story some time ago…
As for the Caprice, although I liked some of the trim additions, especially the chrome lines on the tail lights, I now feel GM deep-sixed Pontiac with this model. After all, what did paying for a Bonneville get you that the Caprice didn’t have? The “Pontiac” nameplate?
Yes, the “Caprice” didn’t and still doesn’t make sense to me, nor will it ever, as “Impala” should remain the top of the Chevy line, end of story.
Funny – two weeks ago, I saw a fire-engine red 1966 Impala Sports Sedan running around town that wasn’t in bad shape – my mind began to go wild…
Zackman, I am with you 100% on the “Caprice” name. Why would you name your top model after a whim? But it is not as though LTD or VIP was all that much better. I always considered “Impala” one of the best names Chevy ever had.
The story I’ve heard regarding the naming of the Caprice is that “Caprice” was the name of an upscale restaurant that a Chevy marketing exec liked to dine at.
Because they were so Cavalier?
Not one but two whimsical names. The only other car name I hate as much as Cavalier is……..Mystique. They are like non-names. They mean little to nothing….a negative jena se qua.
As for great names “Thunderbird” still has a great ring to it, in spite of having been put on cars that have little to do with each other.
Je ne sais quoi. Sorry. Meaning quite literally “I ( Je) don’t (ne) know (sais) what (quoi)”. Just so when u use it in print in the future it looks right. 😉
Actually, they do make some sense. Caprice means “on a whim”, and it was a whimsical upgrade to a good car. Cavalier has 2 meanings, either a gentleman trained in arms and horsemanship or snobby. That car was neither. Mystique is a special quality that makes a person or thing interesting or exciting.That car was only a mystery as to why anyone bought one. Cheyrolet, drawing on it’s Swiss/French roots, went for French sounding names (Bel Air is french for good air, for God’s sake), and often used names starting with a C. Mercury went with words starting in M. Dodge went with D names, like Dart, Duster, Demon, Diaper Rash… I jest. At least they had names, not model numbers. Would you look back so fondly when thinking of your A125 or your Impala?
I was 6 years old when the Caprice was introdiced. The word not being then in my vocabulary, I interpreted it as “Car price” and thought that was an odd name for a car.
Re: “Impala” is simply the greatest model name for a car ever created.
I think Buick had some great names: Electra, Invicta, Wildcat, Roadmaster, LeSabre, Centurion. My favorite is probably (Plymouth) Fury though.
I’m 100% behind you on the “Fury” name. Surely one of the greatest, that’s for sure. I’m still mad at Chrysler for not using it again.
While I’m at it, here are my favorite model names, in no particular order except for the obvious:
GTO (’nuff said)
Probably others, but those are my favorites.
Impala is at the top of my list, too, and I also love Bonneville. But you left out a couple of great ones:
The original Riviera’s stunning beauty had a lot to do with it, but the name “Riviera” just oozes class, elegance and grace. And I loved the nameplate with the big, bold swooping R.
great names, indeed.
but for 60s names, I STILL do not understand how ‘Camaro’ passed muster…
Really ‘Malibu’ would make your list? Really? I don’t know, I’m from Detroit and it’s always kinda grated on me. I think of cars as gritty and loud, male, heavy, animals sure are good names. But Malibu sounds like an indulgent wuss. Plus the fact they are a fairly mid level car there’s really nothing behind it. It’s all personal opinion. People like what they like, not really something they control. I’m right on with the name impala and they weren’t very tough animals either, can out run faster than a cheetah, for sure, but very thin and light, certainly not really heavy metal like a car, but wildebeest might not be a great name…. Hmm… I might reconsider that. Detroit: make me a Wildebeest !!!!
Buying a Bonneville instead of a Caprice got you the Turbo-Hydramatic instead of Powerglide on any engine, and a Pontiac engine instead a Chevrolet engine.
You also avoided the defective motor mounts Chevrolet used on its V-8-equipped models from 1965-69, although this didn’t become well-known until 1970-71.
Finally, you got Pontiac quality control, which was definitely better than Chevrolet’s quality control in the mid-1960s.
There were still differences among the GM divisions, particularly among the full-size cars. My parents had a 1965 Chevrolet Bel Air wagon and a 1967 Oldsmobile Delmont 88 Holiday sedan. The Chevrolet felt cheap and was worn out before 100,000 miles. The Oldsmobile was much better built and was still going at 110,000 miles, although it was beginning to show its age. There was no comparison between the two cars in terms of quality and reliability, let alone refinement.
Yeah, that too, but how many realized that? I think Chevy tried (and succeeded) pulling the wool over many buyers’ eyes, and that hurt Poncho.
I still love the OHC 6…so exotic for the time. Nothing else like it. Pretty to look at under the hood of my great-uncle’s car, too.
I don’t know how many buyers could accurately list all of the differences between a Chevrolet and a Pontiac, but the perception that a Pontiac was “better” definitely existed. And there was actual evidence to back up that perception.
As I said, my parents had a 1965 Chevrolet Bel Air wagon in the late 1960s (which had replaced a well-worn, blah-white 1959 Rambler wagon). My mother, who had emigrated from Germany when she married my father, always wanted a Bonneville sedan or a Safari wagon…she did not particularly like any Chevrolet. The Caprice held no allure for her. She has always been far more “car-conscious” than your typical middle-class housewife.
Whether it was because of the advertising, or more “with it” styling, she viewed 1960s Pontiacs as a middle-class “dream” car. They were the kind of car that made it worthwhile to stretch the paycheck in order to park one in your driveway or drive to the grocery store…at least, they were for her.
Oh man, my mom had like a late 80s bonneville when I was a kid. Yeah it was her “middle class dream car” too. Crept we were more upper lower class. Man was that thing a heavy hulking piece. Not so bad when we first got it, but it aged and winters in Detroit are rough. When it was on its last legs it developed this tendency to start to drive faster when u eased up on the gas for some reason. Could have been dangerous. Sorry, I’m just a bit younger, so it’s so odd that some of these cars were so awesome back in the day then as time word on they started to get all blaaahh is the best I can say. My 1st boyfriends father had a early – mid 90s impala (they were much richer than us). It was nice, told u what direction u were driving on the rear view mirror, but I could never understand how it got from awesome as hell in the late 60s model to this model which could really only be seen as a car for a rather fat middle aged upper middle class white collar dude?? How did this happen?? Yeah, I could see my 15 year old bf driving a 67 impala, but not his dad or vice versa. And I’ve never been able to reconcile bonneville as a nice car. My minds a blank.
Pontiac certainly wasn’t hurting, though — they were #3 in U.S. sales from 1962 to 1970.
Not to mention that the Bonneville usually had slightly better trim and finish than the Caprice, a better dashboard and the Pontiac engine and trans advantages.
Plus, the Bonneville got you distinctive Pontiac styling including a split grille, wide-track wheels, and optional 8-lug aluminum wheels. Also, the Bonnie had an interior with real walnut trim on the dashboard and steering wheel spokes (the Grand Prix had same along with the real wood trim on the console between the Strato bucket seats) – and front seat with armrest (Caprice included the armrest on the rear seat of sedans only) which had more luxurious trim pattern than the Caprice cloth or the LTD’s “panty cloth.”. And a 5-inch longer wheelbase and a bigger trunk. Plus a far superior drivetrain and reliability record compared to Chevy. Also the Bonneville was offered as a convertible which Caprice and LTD didn’t have complete with standard leather upholstery with bench or optional bucket seats.
Also, Bonneville was offered with a Brougham option in sedans that included even more luxurious interiors with bench seats featuring front and rear armrests, standard power windows in armrest extensions and a standard vinyl roof. This luxury very comparable to the more expensive Olds 98 or Buick Electra at Pontiac prices.
And the Caprice wagon wasn’t much of an upgrade over an Impala. Just the exterior wood paneling, instrument panel trim and Caprice nameplates and wheelcovers. The rest of the wagon interior was straight out of the Impala with all-vinyl bench seats and door panels with no carpeted lower sections. And when the Caprice finally got a convertible in 1973, it wasn’t all that luxurious either. That model had the same all-vinyl seats and door panels as Impala sedans and wagons rather than the upgrades of Caprice sedans and coupes. An extra few dollars for a Buick LeSabre Custom, Olds Delta 88 Royale or Pontiac Grand Ville ragtop was a far better value thanks to appropriately more luxurious interiors and (for the Pontiac) a larger standard engine.
The 1965 Bonneville didn’t have *any* engines comparable to the various SBC/Powerglide combos in the Caprice. The standard engine in the Bonneville was a 325 hp 389, like the optional 396/THM for the Chevy.
For fun, rearrange the letters and you get Crapice……….
Funny, to me “Caprice” is synonymous with “1966 flop”.
Dad left (was pushed, actually) Hallman’s Chevrolet in the fall of 1965, just as the 1966’s were revealed. The Hallman family brought some hot-shot in from somewhere in Arizona, name was Glen Jones, to take dad’s place. With great expectations, the number of ’66 cars ordered was way more than what dad would have ever ordered.
You can already guess where this is going: Mr. Jones couldn’t sell his way out of a wet paper bag, and by the spring of ’66 Hallman’s Chevrolet of Johnstown, PA was in serious trouble, and they were renting parking lots to put all the extra inventory. Dad is chuckling, and Mom is being especially waspish (as was her wont) over the whole situation.
By the ’67 model year, Glen Jones was gone, and shortly after Hallman’s Chevrolet was sold off to become Rudy Haupt Chevrolet (Mr. Haupt previously being the secretary/treasurer of the Hallman firm, and the guy who really pushed the idea that my father could be replaced).
So yeah, in my eyes, the ’66 Chevrolet was always a failure car. Even though the Caprice wagon we had served us for a lot of years very well.
Syke, did your dad spend any time at Hallman’s operation in Rochester, N.Y.? It had been there since the 1930’s.
That was the headquarters store. Maynard Hallman, Sr. was the founder of the firm. Back in the days when you could not own multiple dealerships, nor multiple marques (with a few exceptions here and there, depending on the size of the local market), the Hallman’s got around the ‘one person/one dealership’ in an interesting manner.
Maynard Hallman and the missus had (I believe) six sons. Every time a new dealership was bought out, it was bought out in one of the sons name, and said son relocated and took over the dealership.
Johnstown was the exception. Motor Sales Company of Johnstown, PA was sold to the Hallman conglomerate sometime in the mid 1950’s. I don’t know the exact year, as I was born in 1950 and have no memories before 1953, but seem to remember that dad’s ’55 still said Motor Sales on the trunk lid, while his ’58 was definitely Hallman’s. Somewhere along the line, the Hallman conglomerate had developed enough pull with Chevrolet Motor Division (yes, all Hallman stores were Chevrolet dealerships to the best of my knowledge) to buy the eighth store without going thru the fiction of it being owned by yet another sibling.
My father had started at Motor Sales as a salesman in 1940 (a couple of years in the Bethlehem Steel mills convinced him there had to be a better way to earn a living), left for the war, then returned. By the 1950’s he’d been promoted to used car, then new car manager for the firm. When the Hallman’s took over he was the logical choice to manage the dealership which he did for quite a few years.
By your comment, am I to assume that Hallman’s Central Chevrolet is still a going concern in Rochester? If so, that’s impressive. I know there’s still a dealership in Erie, PA (started when I was in college, I think either ’71 or ’72), but I don’t know of any others still under that name.
And no, dad never was at the Rochester store. He was Johnstown born, bred, lived and died there.
I was only aware of Hallman in Erie. They also sell Hyundais and Toyotas. Good reputation.
Te: Bethlehem Steel. My dad had the exact same experience at tge factory in the namesake city. His dad was a long term employee, in a rolling mill or electrical shop where the casino is now. Dad and another kid got jobs shoveling hot slag out of the pits at night. It was piece work. They figured that if they could speed through the job, they could sleep through the rest of their shift. The foreman wanted to fire the when he found them sleeping in a secluded spot, so they showed him the clean pit. He was amazed that they could have done it so fast. Dad quit after two weeks. He wasn’t gonna have a career at the Steel, either.
This is some great information about Hallman’s Chevrolet in Johnstown. I just found out the my 67 Camaro was from that dealership. Do you have any other information about the dealership? Thanks
I feel sad contemplating the fate of this poor old Caprice. I imagine that it was cherised and enjoyed by its owner when it was new, a source of pride… And now, decades later, it just sat there, considered worhless, rusting away, being used as impromptu storage boxes, junk piling up inside its formerly luxurious interior… Man, it has fallen so far… What a sad fate for an automobile.
I hadn’t read your comments before posting my thoughts— but clearly this photo essay has hit us in the same manner. sorry for stepping on your toes.
The juxtaposition of the luxurious, surreal and dreamlike brochure images with this ‘classic’s’ present state is a touch of genius, Tom.
An informative read that is tinged with just a little bit of melancholia at the inevitability of rust, neglect and years. jeez, it’s a bit like Ms. Haversham in Great Expectations!
Like Zackman, I’ve also got an inherent dislike for the Caprice. For me, it’s probably because dad left the dealership, and the car business just before the 1966 models came out. I had gone to the regional dealer’s meeting where the new models were introduced (the first and last time I ever attended one of those) and suddenly two months later dad’s no longer selling Chevies!
To me, the Caprice was where it started to go wrong. Chevrolet was definitely going ‘outside of it’s station’ with the model, and the great brougham epoch is the low point of the American car industry. Now instead of neat designs like the Corvair Corsa, we had cheap fake luxury. Retch!
It’s easy enough, and fair enough, to criticize Chevy for joining the “Brougham Epoch”, but there is no denying the success of the LTD, so Chevy probably thought they needed to meet Ford head on.
Apparently GM thought “A car for every purse and purpose” applied at the divisional level.
It’s easier to see the mistake in hindsight than at the time. It’s hard to see any sales – especially high profit sales- as damaging. An executive suggesting Chevy trim it’s line so Pontiac’/Olds could have that market segment would have ruined his career.
This is one case where I think the division managers had too much power to define new models. GM corporate should have been able to veto models that went against the intended mission of the brand within the GM brand hierarchy.
Of course, wasn’t this about the same time that GM corporate told all the division execs that their company cars must all be vehicles from their own divisions instead of all of them getting Cadillacs?
I agree, but by this time the intended mission of the various brands was a lost concept. When exactly GM lost the plot is debatable – I’d say at least as early as the original Corvette.
By the mid-1960s, after falling far behind Chevrolet in sales since 1959, Ford was closing the gap. The momentum provided by the Mustang and the LTD (“quiet as a Rolls-Royce!”) was responsible for that surge.
We can talk all we want about preserving the Sloan brand structure, but there is simply no way that GM would have sat back and allowed Ford to outsell Chevrolet on a consistent basis.
If anything, GM should have moved the full-size Oldsmobile and Buick, along with Cadillac, UP the price ladder, perhaps by making disc brakes standard or adding more sophisticated suspension systems.
Re: If anything, GM should have moved the full-size Oldsmobile and Buick, along with Cadillac, UP the price ladder, perhaps by making disc brakes standard or adding more sophisticated suspension systems.
A good point. At the onset of the depression, a lot of upscale manufacturers dropped their prices just so they could continue to sell cars to (attempt to) stay in business. Afterwards, the survivors all seemed intent on chasing market share instead of retaining their exclusivity, so prices never went back up to comparable pre-depression levels. When more and more people could afford a Cadillac, their prestige image was sure to suffer.
A related problem was that, in the 60’s, cars were sold like pizzas: A basic pepperoni pizza is pretty cheap. A lot of profit is made from the added toppings. As it was with car options. Selling a car with all the usually optional equipment as standard meant you couldn’t advertise a low base price to get people in the door. Chrysler advertising really pushed that (Why buy midsize when you can move up to fullsize for only a few dollars more?) but I assume the others were just as bad.
I believe that GM fell into Ford’s trap here. Ford had a virtual zero mid-priced presence after its aborted late 50’s exuberance. As a teenager, my mother still considered a Ford to be a cheap car. I, however, experienced a new Ford – one that could credibly compete with Pontiac and Olds for features, styling, etc. Ford Division was the source of that company’s increasing prestige, and Ford Division by the 1970s was selling a Granada that could be cross-shopped with a Chrysler LeBaron.
Ford had to go this route because it had no other option. It was the 800 pound gorilla of the FoMoCo, and it was going to grab every upscale car that got conceived. But as well as this worked for Ford, it put GM in a no-win situation. Either match Ford model for model with a Chevy (and start overlapping Pontiac, Olds and even Buick) or starve Chevy of cars to feed the upper brands. I agree with the views that the upper brands did not move up the ladder fast enough. With Ford, it didn’t matter, because all it did was keep Mercury weak, which it had always been. But at GM, Chevy started encroaching on the upper brands, leaving less and less reason for all of them to exist. And we know how it eventually played out.
And as it was, DeLorean said Chevrolet dealers were very, very unhappy that it took GM as long as it did to respond to Ford’s merchandising innovations.
Dynamic88, that’s a very good question: why was the Corvette a Chevy anyway? 1.3 million Chevys sold in 1953! They hardly needed a halo car.
At the time, Olds was the performance brand wasn’t it? The F-88 concept was designed the same 1952-53 period as the concept Corvette. It had a 324 V-8 with a four-barrel carb, high compression and a four-speed Hydramatic. Why Corvette and not F-88?
Supposedly, Chevrolet brass was able to prevent the F-88 from becoming a production model precisely BECAUSE it had the Rocket V-8, and was thus a real threat to the Corvette.
I almost bought one of these in 1975. 1966 Caprice coupe, Midnight Blue 327/factory 4-speed for $250. The 327 had thrown a rod but otherwise nice as I recall. I wish I’d bought it and slapped another engine in it. Would’ve been a cool ride.
While it’s easy to point at Caprice for beginning the downward spiral of the Pontiac/Olds (eventually Buick) divisions…I’d point back to the first moves made by the “low-priced three” ten years before in the form of Corvette and Thunderbird…plus the attractive and upscale styling and appointments of both marques’ 1955 models as compared to previous iterations.
When the ’58 squarebird came out in particular, that was the beginning of Ford’s move further upscale. As Ford’s direct competition and responsible for half of GM’s car sales at the time, Chevrolet had to respond, even if only, at first, by offering more upscale appointments in its traditional lineup.
Of course it was Pontiac, then Buick that first responded to T-Bird, but Chevy had to meet LTD head-on, otherwise the brand perception would have been damaged by comparison…much quicker than it eventually was.
I think it’s important to remember that Ford never gave a rat’s behind about its “Olds/Buick”, Mercury; and its “Pontiac” – Edsel – lasted only three years. Therefore Ford had plenty of latitude to maneuver wherever they wanted to go to build the brand.
In comparison, from 1980-2009, Chevrolet suffered by GM’s policies…with only styling cues and interior appointments as the main differentiation in many GM lines over too many years. Buick/Olds/Pontiac had moved downscale and the four marques – and eventually Saturn – were eating each other’s, instead of the competition’s, lunch in many segments. The rampant GM quality issues in those years only made matters worse…but I’d argue that even if build quality had been second to none…Chevy would’ve become synonymous with “Cheap” anyway…the polar opposite of the old “Great American Value” position they held before 1980.
In 1966 this all worked. Detroit ruled domestic car sales and there was enough differentiation between Chevy/Pontiac/Olds/Buick for everyone to carve out a niche.
Today I like the idea of moving Buick and Cadillac further up the ladder. GMC should go there too if it’s going to continue…which no doubt they will, I believe it’s GM’s second-best selling division.
We can Monday Morning Quarterback this all day but I’m sure if it was me sitting in GM chair James Roche’s office back then, I’d have seen nothing but blue sky ahead too.
Even if he could have seen the future I don’t think it would have made a difference.
I totally agree with ‘chas108’, easy to say ‘never a Caprice’, but it sold well and GM didn’t think they’d never lose market share.
And besides, the mid 50’s BelAir was really the first intrusion into mid price field. It’s just that some car buffs don’t like Caprice/LTD’s ‘cushiness’ versus sporty BelAir/Impala/Galaxie 500.
I believe you are right as to using the mid-50’s as the point of departure. Ford, Chevy, and Plymouth were the 3 low priced leaders for each corporation (FoMoCo, GM, and Chrysler). Had Ford moved Mercury, Edsel, and Lincoln (MEL engines separated them from the “lowly” Fords) upmarket and kept Ford the basic models, we would have had the T-Bird and Mustang as Mercury products, along with the Comet, which was an Edsel before birth. The LTD would have been an Edsel, but a low or midrange model. It may have made Edsel work. Plymouth would get the Valiant, just as it did in reality, but no Dodge Lancer, and none of the sporty stuff of the 60s and 70s would have been Plymouths. Chevy would have gone on as the GM low price leader, and moved a hell of a lot more folks up into POB products, if not Cadillacs. The Corvette would have been a Cadillac, and would have probably sold well as one, as you see many luxury makers have a sports model as well as luxobarges. Instead, we had the incestuous cannibalization of the era instead. It begged the imports to come in to help clean the house.
GM corporate ruined the divisions by telling the divisions what to sell. Case in point: GM corporate forced the Vega on Chevrolet against Chevy division’s wishes (according to DeLorean).
Chevy was preparing its own mini-car and even was prepared to use the seldom-seen 153ci inline 4 as its engine. GM corporate indeed overruled the division and imposed Vega on them.
Don’t know about that. In the mid-1960s, Pontiac pushed a 2-seat sports car based on Tempest/LeMans mechanicals with either an OHC 6 or 326 or 389 V8 called the Banshee, but that one was shot down by the 14th Floor because the Banshee would have affected Corvette sales and GM believed there was not enough market for 2 sports cars in the corporate lineup. As a consolation prize, Pontiac was permitted to offer a version of Chevy’s Mustang fighter that would become the ’67 Camaro.
And for a nice bookend toward the end of the “Great Brougham Epoch” would be the 1990 Caprice Classic Brougham… complete with landau roof and leather interior.
I’ve seen one around here a few years ago. It was hideous. Maroon color. I don’t know which is worse – that, or the brougham-ized 2005 Impala LS, mist gold w/dark brown fake convertible top, emblem stuck on said fake top material one street over from mine!
I have a feeling that those came about after RWD C-body customers and burned by the 4100 Cadillac customers started looking for “whats still a traditional car” available from GM, bingo, the RWD BOF Caprice Classic Brougham was born, they are almost as nice as a Caddy inside, when the door mount passive restraints were added to the Caprice the seat controls were moved to the door panels on the nicer Caprices, like on a higher end Buick or Cadillac.
@Zachman, I was speaking only of “factory” brougham packages and brougham like appointments. If we start to include some of the abominations done by body shops and private conversion companies than the “Brougham Epoch” will never truly die. I like both the Buick Lucerne and Lacrosse but every time I see one with an aftermarket fake convertible roof I shudder and die just a little inside. Those cars have nice clean lines, don’t ruin it!
@Carmine, in some ways your likely right.
Somewhere in the Cohort, I posted a couple of pics of a beautiful 1990 Caprice Classic Brougham, in two tone brown. It’s not an LS, but it’s nice.
Nice find. You can certainly tell it’s a 90 by the door-mounted seatbelts.
89 and 90 were great years with the fuel injection finally making it on the 305. If I found a good example for sale, it’d be hard to pass up.
They have to be some of the most uncomplicated vehicles to drive. Extra assisted power steering, good sightlines, nice sturdy stance on the road, sliders for the HVAC, simplicity indeed.
Any photos of the flags on the fender? They are the larger flags, indicating that this does or at least did have a big block engine.
396, or even…..a 427.
It also has the rare Z-43 “stack-o-hubcaps” interior package, very rare.
I’ve mentioned before that my mom had a ’65 Bel Air four door sedan for a few years when I was a kid — oddly, during that same period my step-mom owned a burgundy ’66 Impala SS 396. Initially I preferred the Impala, with it’s more luxurious appointments, console-mounted floor shift, softer, quieter ride, and hairy big block. But you know in the end I came to prefer the Bel Air, with its cleaner styling, column-shifted manual, cooler in summer cloth seats, and stronger, apparently stiffer suspension. Maybe it was just the lighter weight of the inline six… But I always remember how the Bel Air could be flung around corners on rough dirt roads pretty mercilessly, while the Impala needed to be nursed along those same roads. Also the structure of the sedan felt much tighter than that of the hardtop. ‘Course the Impala’s disk brakes were a big improvement though. Still, for the way I drive, the Bel Air was just a better, more enjoyable car. Obviously, most people don’t see it that way … 🙂 I surely would love to get a ’65 Bel Air 4 door sedan one day.
Go to any show or auction these days and you will see at least one 1960’s Impala SS. However, I don’t think I have ever seen a Caprice coupe with buckets, console, floor shift and gauge pack. Did GM actually sell any of those?
At least one. Behold: http://www.flickr.com/photos/argentla/sets/72157624322174038/with/4719661141/
More than one. For 1966 introduction, Chevrolet LOADED the pipeline with those bucket seat formal 2-door hardtops. I remember dad’s old dealership getting a lot of them, optioned out with everything Chevy offered – and an overblown sticker price to match. They were very difficult cars to move with price tags getting into Buick territory. The concept of ‘sticker shock’ started here, not with the 80’s J-cars.
The ’66 Caprices tested by Motor Trend and Car & Driver were so loaded – both also had the 390-horsepower 427 and Turbo-Hydramatic. Both of those test cars also had the optional heavy-duty (F-41) suspension and C&D Caprice was featured in a test against a similarly-equipped Ford XL 7-Litre with Dearborn’s new 428 V8 and Cruise-O-Matic. C&D said the quality of their test cars was far below what was expected of a $4,500-5,000 car as priced and no better than the bread-and-butter Impala and Galaxie 500.
And after that initial year, the Strato bucket seat/console interior changed from an RPO to “special order” status on Caprice coupes from 1967 to 1969 – very few were so outfitted and Impala SS models were also in a severe decline by that time. A rarity for 1966 Caprice coupes was the bucket seat interior in cloth and vinyl – almost all were all-vinyl. Chevrolet buyers preferring Strato buckets and a console were enticed by smaller Chevys such as the Chevelle Malibu/SS 396 and the new ponycar, Camaro, along with the (slow-selling) Corvair Monza. Chevrolet would drop the Impala SS and the bucket-seat/console option for Impala/SS/Caprice coupes after the 1969 model year and then direct such buyers to the new personal-luxury Monte Carlo coupe for 1970. And much fewer Monte Carlos were as well-outfitted with the bucket seats/console and lots of other options (aside from the Monte SS versions) than the ’66 Caprice coupes were.
A typical ’66 Caprice coupe with the buckets and console interior – and loaded to the gills. Count all the “extras” of this example. About all that’s missing are the tilt-and-telescopic wheel and Comfortron air conditioning (it does have the regular Four Season Air Conditioning option that cost $100 less).
My Dad bought a ’67 Caprice Classic at Pine Motors in Wapello, IA. White, gold vinyl roof, fender skirts and four doors. 396 and an 8 track playing Herb Albert and the Tijuana Brass. I still love that music.
I still listen to Herb Alpert & TB on occasion. I keep a CD or two in the car. To me, their 60s music is the most catchy but their late 70s early 80s is the most jazzy.
There’s a faded red ’67 two-door for sale at a dingy repair shop near my apartment right this very moment.
At some point in the late 1960s my parents decided that three children meant they should get a station wagon. The first one was a 1965 Chevy Bel Air, which was replaced a couple of years later by a ’66 Caprice. It was white with a blue interior, pretty much like the pictures of the ’65 above. Probably had a 283 but I can’t remember for sure. It did not have the third seat, but somehow riding in a wagon with fake wood paneling made me feel like we had fully arrived in suburbia.
My dad did a short stint selling Chevy’s in 1966 between dealerships. He actually had a bronze ’66 Caprice coupe- no vinyl top. Bronze interior with buckets, console, the gauges and a 396 with the Turbo 400. he always complained that the big Chevy’s of that era didn’t handle like the Pontiacs, Buicks and Caddy’s he sold because they used a “3-link” rear suspension and the other GM divisions used a 4-link. Even the Chevelle used a 4-link and he claimed they would outhandle a full size Chev. He did like this Caprice though I remember. Probably cause it was loaded up like a Pontiac or Buick would have been and had the same tranny and a big block instead of a PowerSlide with the 327. I also remember a Pheasant got under the hood and roasted itself in the 396 causing the worst stench I have smelled in a car! Off to the detail shop it went LOL! He went back to selling Pontiacs and Caddys after a few months in ChevyLand! He did manage to get a ’67 Impala hardtop coupe as his next demo. It was ugly- plain white, dog dish wheel covers and to add insult to injury- a 283 with the PowerSlide! Yechh! The ’67 Catalina coupe that replaced it was light years ahead of that Impala!
My 6th grade teacher had one of these, bucket seats, console. It was white with a blue interior. This has always been my favorite full size Chevy.
Chevrolet began moving upscale into Buick-Olds-Pontiac territory with the ’55 Bel Air, especially with the optional V8 engine and the loads of “extras” available. That was followed by the ’58 Impala which cost less than a Pontiac Chieftain, Olds Dynamic 88 or Buick Special – but more more lavishly equipped as all Impalas at least had a deluxe steering wheel, full carpeting and foam padded bench seat while all Chieftain models and 88 sedans had non-padded front seats, standard steering wheel with horn button instead of ring and rubber floor mats, as did the Special 2- and 4-door sedans (Olds 88 Holiday sedans and coupes, and convertibles, and the Buick Special hardtops and convertibles did get carpets and other deluxe items standard).
Chevy in the early 1960s had an opportunity to offer a Thunderbird-like car (as did all other GM divisions) but turned it down due to an already-large lineup including the big cars, the rear-engine Corvair and the upcoming Chevy II Nova – and a desire to concentrate on the Corvette as America’s only two-seat sports car which was set for a 1963 redesign as the Sting Ray. Cadillac also turned it down so it was down to Buick, Oldsmobile and Pontiac to offer the T-bird killer. Buick won because it kept William Mitchell’s design and concept intact while Pontiac wanted to make it more of a hot rod with optional Tri Power engines and Hurst-shifted 4-speed transmissions as well as to add Pontiac styling cues (one clay model had a front end that looked a lot like the ’65 GTO), while Oldsmobile wanted front-wheel-drive with longitude-mounted V8 which would have necessitated a longer hood (similar to the production ’66 Toronado).
Chevrolet dealers, on the other hand, watched as they sold maybe 2 or 3 Corvettes a year while Ford dealers moved far more T-Birds (and later Mustangs) than Chevy was Corvairs and Novas. Also, many Impala buyers were trading up to Pontiac Catalinas, Olds Dynamic 88s and Buick LeSabres (whose luxury trim now equalled or surpassed Impala’s) and while the other divisions had more luxurious cars the only step from the Impala was the sporty Impala SS in 1964.
At that same time, GM issued a corporate policy which mandated that all top executives drive their own “brand” of car rather than Cadillacs – now reserved for Cadillac management and the guys on the 14th Floor. Buick had Rivieras and Electras, Oldsmobile had the Ninety-Eight and Starfire and Pete Estes and John DeLorean of Pontiac could drive Bonnevilles or Grand Prixs. But Bunkie Knudsen of Chevrolet could only choose an Impala SS or Corvette Sting Ray.
So Knudsen rolled out the Caprice in mid-1965 to give Chevrolet’s top people a “Bow-Tie” luxury car along with its dealers and Chevy owners wanting to stay within – as well as to compete with Ford’s new-for-’65 Galaxie LTD. Caprice sold well right from the start, particularly starting in 1966 when a coupe and wagons were added.
Though Caprice was selling well, Chevy still had no car to compete with the T-Bird though every other division had a personal-luxury entry by 1967, the same year the Camaro was introduced as a challenger to Ford’s Mustang in the pony league. Pete Estes, who came from Pontiac to Chevy in 1965, felt Chevrolet needed a personal-luxury entry and in 1968 was given permission from the 14th Floor to offer the G-body introduced on Pontiac’s 1969 Grand Prix for 1970 after a one-year Pontiac exclusive. Estes won that one after battling with Chevy general sales manager Lee Mays who felt Chevrolet didn’t need such a car in its line (Mays left Chevy in 1969 to head Buick after clashing with Estes’ successor DeLorean).
The result was the 1970 Monte Carlo, which replaced the Impala SS and bucket-seat optioned Caprice coupes as the division’s large “halo” car. Being built off the intermediate Chevelle (much like the GP was derived from the Pontiac LeMans/GTO) platform, the Monte was cheap to build and it’s affordable price along with all its styling and luxurious appointments ($3,163 base vs. $5,000 for a T-Bird, Toronado or Riviera) made it quite a profitable car for Chevrolet as most were sold “loaded with options” in the $4,500-5,000 range, bring dealers and the division far more money than a “stripped beyond the bone” Nova or Vega.
A lot of posters make it seem like Chevrolet was playing catch up with
Ford all throughout the 1960s. Perhaps Ford had the bright ideas first (LTD and Mustang), but Chevrolet was at the top of its game in the 1960s. The Impala was the biggest selling nameplate, especially in 1965.
I do agree though that Chevy didn’t need the Caprice. Perhaps it should have just stayed a luxury option because an Impala was an Impala. Ford needed the LTD because its own Galaxie could never compete with the Impala, which was and still is an iconic nameplate.
A lot of posters make it seem like Chevrolet was playing catch up with
Ford all throughout the 1960s. Perhaps Ford had the bright ideas first (LTD and Mustang), but Chevrolet was at the top of its game in the 1960s. The Impala was the biggest selling nameplate, especially in 1965.
I do agree though that Chevy didn’t need the Caprice. Perhaps it should have just stayed a luxury option because an Impala was an Impala. Ford needed the LTD because its own Galaxie could never compete with an Impala, which was and still is iconic.
Good article but wonder how the hell you got pix of my car don’t mind I think its pretty cool it is now in the garage getting restored
Well, it was just sitting there! I always have to pull over and check out a cool old car when I see one. I am glad the car is getting restored–hopefully I’ll get to see it at some of the local cruise nights when it’s done.
The original Caprice, much like the original LTD, was quite elegant. Both lost some of that elegance as the years went by, recovering some in later years – Caprice ’77, LTD Crown Victoria ’83.
You have to admit, “Caprice” is a wonderful name for a car…
In Wisconsin farm country, the most popular Chevy was what we called a “Janesville vibrator”. The name referred to a 6 cylinder full size Chevy of any series and transmission. Many of my friends used one on a Friday night. We might have dreamed of doing awesome burnouts with a 396 Caprice, but the reality was usually a 6 cylinder Bel-Air or Biscayne. Most farmers were just too darn practical. If that weren’t enough, home state pride also played a role. Our Chevys were locally made in Janesville – hence the nickname.
I actually envied the kids who had access to a Janesville vibrator. It beat the other Wisconsin farm country favorite – a Rambler. The word hadn’t yet been invented, but picking up your date in a Rambler was the very definition of “nerd”. Adding insult to injury, the reclining seat feature often led parents to insist on bringing home a date extra early. It was a double curse.
Mocked by your peers. Viewed with suspicion by your girl’s parents. Sigh. . . .
How do I know? In high school, my parents had a ’58 Rambler American. There may not be many people whose social status is improved by 5 year old Falcon station wagon, but I can assure you mine shot up when my parents finally traded the Rambler in 1968.
If only they could have bought one of these Caprices!
I think Di-Noc would be a great name for a cover band.
In the mid ’60s, friends of my folks would take us all out in their new 4-door 65 Caprice. It was silver, with a black vinyl top. But I mainly remember that car for the air conditioning and power windows – especially after being told repeatedly by my folks “It’s not our car.
STOP playing with that switch!”
But the car that really made an impression on me in those days, was our neighbor’s brand new metallic blue ’65 Bonneville hardtop. The Caprice was nice, but that Pontiac was gorgeous. A car I wouldn’t mind having today.
As for ‘keeping up with the Joneses’, when we got back to the States from Dad’s last overseas assignment in ’68, my folks finally got their first car with AC – a leftover ’67 Malibu Concours station wagon, complete with power tailgate window, chrome roof-rack, fake wood on the sides, AND an AM/FM radio! I kind-of wish I had that one today.
Happy Motoring, Mark
A 1966 Caprice intro ad from Terrill Chevrolet in Springfield, MO – October, 1965
Here it is!!
Try again. Third time the charm.
And another 1966 Caprice ad from Terrill Chevrolet in Springfield, MO in November, 1965.
I bought a well-used, white ’66 Caprice 4-door hardtop in May 1976 … for the princely sum of $80 – from my best friend’s sister in Norman, OK. My recollections of this wonderful car are as follows:
* The all-black interior was very luxurious and comfortable; the car had plenty of leg and hip room, front and rear and was loaded with every available option. I was told the car was originally built for a local Chevy dealer in Albuquerque, New Mexico in late ’65 or early ’66 (Ed Black Chevrolet). How it ended up so uncared for ten years later (rotted-off vinyl roof and rear seat top, faded/scratched paint and general cosmetic neglect) was truly a sad thing for such a beautiful and powerful car.
* Its 390-horsepower, L-36 427 V-8 engine was frighteningly powerful, especially after my father did some ignition/carburetor ‘fine-tuning.’ Without exaggeration, this neck-snapping Chevrolet was slightly faster in the 1/4 mile than the stock 383 Magnum 1970 Roadrunner I bought a few months later.
* Gas mileage in the city averaged 6-7 mpg and about 9-10 mpg on the highway, using the best premium leaded gas available at the time (Super Shell).
To my eye, the 1966 Caprice (and to some extent the 1967 model) is just so much more attractive than either the boxy-looking Ford LTD or the rather plain Plymouth VIP. The ‘coke-bottle’ curve of the body line, the sweep of the sail panels, the layout of the dashboard, the comfort of the interior and that end-all-worlds 427 under
the hood all combine to put this particular Caprice in a class all by itself; forget Pontiac, Dodge, Buick, Olds or even Mercury – this is a better all around hi-po luxury ride than any of their top offerings. I think that only the ’67-’68 Chrysler 300 2-door hardtop with the 440 TNT engine would be a worthy – albeit more expensive and slightly heavier – alternative to the ’66 Caprice 427.
If anyone has an opportunity to restore a 427-powered, fully loaded ’66 Caprice, by all means go for it – you’ll have a collector’s item of the most desirable and enjoyable kind!
PS: The Caprice had a black vinyl top, a cloth/vinyl black interior and a 12-bolt positraction rear with 3.31 gears. I could ‘boil’ the skinny 78-series bias-ply tires at will when flooring it at a stoplight – what a riot!
While GM has had plenty of Deadly Sins, they had a pretty good shot of Greatest Hits, too, and the 1965 Caprice would certainly fall into that category. Lots of profit built into that brougham-ification of GM’s lowest division full-sizer. And, yet, AFAIK, there was no cannibalization of higher-tier GM marques. The Caprice was ‘just right’ in that it sold great and, yet, didn’t severely impact the Sloan ladder of GM’s cars.
Sure, a Pontiac Catalina would be nice, but how about an even nicer (at least trim and interior-wise) Caprice for less money? As the Caprice owner’s financial situation improved, ‘then’ they’d move up to the Catalina with its standard 389 engine.
Imagine walking into the GM boardroom in 1965 and telling them that 20 years into the future Cadillac would be selling a Chevy subcompact with a fancy grille and a 4 cylinder engine with a manual transmission. Security would have been called, you’d have been dragged out of the room, and forcibly committed to an asylum.
And the Caprice was where it all began.
I’m not sure I’d say it began with the Caprice; it was really Iacocca over at Ford with the 1965 LTD. When it became apparent it was going to be a sales hit, GM really didn’t have a lot of choice but to respond in kind.
It’s really one of those things where an unexpected success turns out to be a bad thing in the long run. The Caprice definitely led to the erosion of the Cadillac brand but what else were they supposed to do? Let Ford reap all the benefits?
I debated this. More I thought about it, I’d start with the “senior compacts” from Buick and Oldsmobile in the early 60s.
This car is missing the Sun Super Tach hose clamped to the steering column/
I’m prbably in the minority but I’ve always believed the ’65 to be the best-looking full size Chevy of the 60’s; just like I think the ’69 Chevelle was the best-looking A-Body. The following years for both looked too heavy and bulked up to my eyes.
Sorry guys, but this car happened and a couple of generations later a few storied brands became history. You have memories of Oldmobile, Pontiac or Mercury. You blame it all on Lee Iacocca.
If those storied brands of days gone by really had something more to offer than either a Chevy or Ford with a nice interior – then they did need to go. There really isn’t a reason to have middle brands. Those old middle brands were actually little more than tarted up models with their own dealerships. You can’t keep nursing empty brand names because someone had fond memories of them as a kid.
GM “lost it” with poor quality, not the Caprice, which filled a sales niche. Olds and Buick still sold well, alongside Chevy full and mid size cars.
When they cheapened their cars with junk drivetrains, that turned off buyers. Not badging or trim. Caddy 4100, Olds Diesel, FWD X cars, THM-200, etc.