Thursday, May 1, 2014

Two Brutes

2 Yachts Combine for Almost 10,000 lbs
 I was recently trying out a new shortcut to cross Brooklyn via car when I just had to pull over and take stock of what I was seeing.
A 1973 Chrysler New Yorker Brougham in a colossal display of unabashed size. I mean look at this thing!
Technically this was the very last year for the fabled "Fuselage Styling" that began in 1969, though it seems impossibly big to be described as anything remotely aerodynamic. This is no illusion; at an astonishing 21+ feet this body style (which included the Chrysler Newport and stand-alone Imperial) was the largest postwar non-limousine automobile. In the middle of the gas crisis no less!
It's somewhat tough discerning which of the many factory color choices this is, but a good guess might be "Autumn Bronze Poly". With its white pinstripe and vinyl roof it reminds me of one of those little individually-wrapped round caramel candies that had the white sugar center.
Who says you can't fit a round peg in a square hole; just look at those headlights! Get a load of that bumper too. In the early days of the government 5mph crash safety mandate automakers just slapped increasingly huge slabs of metal to both ends until the car would pass.
Here is my cadidate for the most out-of-place wheel covering of all time. Blue plastic and kinda-sporty? On THIS? A bizarre decision that somehow makes the wheel look smaller than it is under that massive slab of Autumn Bronze. I'd love to see the other car memorialized in this sideswipe damage!
Repairing a white vinyl roof with white tape is a good effort, but in this case the roof has had time to take on a tan-like coffee stained finish. Masking tape would almost match up more convincingly.
Stand back people! BROUGHAM edition coming through.
As we gaze over the majesty of this tremendous caboose let's go over some numbers. This car is equipped with the 440V8 that was good for a paltry 215 horsepower in the emissions-equipment choked days of '73. The gas tank could hold 23 gallons and you would need every one of them with an average of 9.2 MPG!
Easily my favorite part of this beast is the full-width taillight set inside that Evil-Empire bumper. Anyone remember the classic arcade game Berzerk? The bad guys looked just like this bumper.
Somehow the top speed when new was rated at 123 MPH. I can only imagine the floating sensation of rocketing down the highway at that speed, going gas-station to gas station. We will leave with one parting shot of the full scope of its 4-door hardtop styling. Keep in mind that the length of this car is slightly over the width of a NYC building lot, so even without the perspective this Chrysler is mightier than the brick house behind it.

Around the corner from the beautiful blue Caddy I shot recently was this stationary model; a 1970 Cadillac Coupe DeVille.
Under all that patina lurks what I believe to be the original Fancy Exterior Color Choice of "Bayberry". Back in the days when this car was manufactured it was still easy to walk into a dealership and custom-order a car to your specs, so colors offered only on other models could be selected if you were willing to wait to take delivery.

I've always loved the tall pointed taillights from the '70 Caddys. This generation body style has the absolute last shout-out to the fins of 10 years earlier.
Here is a decent view of the worst kind of rust "repair"; the old "Let's shove some cardboard or duct tape in the hole before spray-painting it a totally different color" technique. If your goal is to call attention to the part of your ride that looks like a dog-eared textbook left out in the rain, then great!
My guess is that these are vintage-1969 Buick Super Sport wheels. GM indeed but definitely not Cadillac.
Things are just slightly wonky up front with the grill askew, the light housings not-quite-plumb, and the grass green non-metallic touch-up paint. Again; if your repair calls more attention to the troubled area it's not worth it!
Another classic example of a 1OOSP car; one out-of-state-plate attached to a car serving as an improbably sufficient placeholder. A guy walked up to me while I was snapping these pics and said "This guy; he never move the car. This car been here for YEARS". I have no doubt it's true; the usually zealous ticketers somehow ignore anything parked in NYC with 1OOSP, so if your insurance runs out just pick one up and stop worrying about Alternate Side Parking regulations forever!

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