Chef Voyardee

Changing Loyalties - Please Chime In

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Brand loyalty is something the marketing people want to instill in the targets of their output. They work very hard at it, to establish a "relationship" with you, the buyer. I try to avoid such nonsense and be an independent "thinker". The only "relationship" is that they want your money, frequently.

 

Why stick to one brand? You are missing out on lots of other excellent vehicles that may well be "better" than your chosen brand in some way(s).

 

Extend your comfort zone. Find something you like and want to drive. Those are the only selection criteria for me. Then you fit into the market for that vehicle.

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Key is to always have at least one you can have fun now with. If that means just one then that is the place to start. If you do not feel you can be happy without a convertible/manual trans/V8/ &/or AC then that is what you should look for. And I guarantee that if you look, you will find.

 

Do not know how many cars I've had but off the top of my head & only counting ones I had for at least 3 months: Jaguars (4 -actually 9 before took the cure inc XK-140MC, XK 150S, XKE, Devin Jag), MG (2), FIATs (3), Renault Caravelle (1), Corvettes (3), Camaros (4), Corvairs (5 inc.  a Fitch Sprint & a Corvan), Firebirds (1 - OHC 6), Vegas (3), Astre (1), Sunbird (1), Cadillacs (2 & looking not very hard for a XLR), Grand Prixs (3- B, G, & W bodies), GTOs (2- Judge and Goat Wagon), Fieros (5), Reattas (5), Buick GS (1), Crossfire (1), Jeep (1), Olds (Cutlass with a 215: 1), Volkswagen Westphalia & Vixen RVs (Both with manual transmissions).

 

Would say that 3/4 had manual transmissions - 1/2 of current herd do now and all have AC including the camper. Have almost always had at least one convertible. All could be driven now, most to LaLa land tomorrow (Turnpike to I-75, left at Lake City, on 'til you reach water).

 

So make a list. In one column put what the car must have. In the other list what you want it to have. Decide how much to spend and how far you will go. Look until you find. Take a magnet if not Corvettes.

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As long as you like the car, who cares what anyone else thinks!  You're the one who has to enjoy it, work on it, share it with your family and friends.  If the Buick will make you happy, then get it!

 

I've always been a Chevy girl, but there are LOTS of cars out there that, given the funds, room and time, I would love to have :)

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I totally understand where you're coming from. I started my '41 Buick restoration 15 years ago. Fifteen! I have recently come to the realization that my life has changed and I won't be able to personally finish it and will be sending it to a professional shop shortly to get it done before I'm old. In the meantime, I've discovered the old adage that it's always cheaper to buy than build. I have bought several "permanent" members of my collection, including a 1929 Cadillac and a 1966 Mustang convertible, and have just acquired a 1941 Buick Limited limousine that I'm sorely tempted to keep.

 

At any rate, I digress. You're making a smart decision. If you're not enjoying the journey or don't see a way that you can shepherd your Mustang to completion, sell it and move on. I think your choice of a Buick is an excellent decision, not just because I'm a Buick guy, but as a collector car dealer, I see that Buicks are huge bang for the buck. I have a 1971 Skylark convertible that is a car I would happily own forever and I have a 1970 Skylark convertible coming in that will be bargain priced in relative terms (under $20K). You couldn't touch a 1970 V8 Chevelle or GTO convertible in very good condition for that price, despite being very similar cars.

 

You're making the right choice. I know it feels like you're betraying the car, yourself, your friends, and your family by "giving up," but I think you'll find that being behind the wheel with your family will help you build different memories that are good for everyone. It's my personal motto to enjoy life while I'm young enough to do it. Soon enough I'll be old and driving big, heavy old cars will be a challenge, so I'm doing it now, while I can. I suggest you do the same. The future will take care of itself, enjoy the now!

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Well said by Matt, as usual.  

 

I grew up in a Ford family, and my dad is a true blue blue oval guy.  Now look at my cars in my signature.  My family heirloom Mustang is my only old Ford (although I like a lot of old Fords).  Dad still rides in any of them with me with a smile on his face, even though he may not 100% understand why his son is the way he is. :)  Drive what you like!

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I remember when the Ford Falcon first came out. Putting the Mustang body skin on them never impressed me. When I was a kid it always looked like they were designed to steal buyers away from MG, not GM. Most were 6 cylinders.

Bernie

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I always thought the '64 Falcon had much improved styling and the Sprint was available with V8 and a four speed. Also remember one thundering around Sebring early in the morning think in 64. Back then if you were big enough to hold a flag you could be a course worker (but in the US had to be 21 to get a racing license).

 

Was sleeping under the fender of my Jag in turn 1 (looks like it is 17 now) when Freddy Lorenzen came thundering by in a H&M Galaxie about five feet away. Sudden awakening. & was followed by a Falcon that sounded about the same.

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Many say that if you have a long term restoration project you must also have an old car to drive to keep your motivation.  A true sentiment, the years-long project can wear on you, I know, I have a 20 year 1957 Pontiac restoration going.  Fortunately I have had a few other drivable cars come along and they are more realistic for most people--I suggest a serviceable driver that does not need a full restoration and (especially) rust repair. 

 

I also agree that regular production Buick/Olds/Pontiacs are a hidden value of the old car world, especially 1970s and full size models.  Their upside is they are generally cheaper to buy and more unique than comparable Chevys, yet they still often benefit from GM parts availability.  They are often found in better shape than a comparable Chevy.  The downside is that if you need any mechanical or trim parts that are unique to the Buick/Olds/Pontiac that can be a problem.  I would advise if you find a worthy candidate immediately Google for any parts houses to see what parts are readily available so you know.    For example, if you find a decent car but with bad seat upholstery maybe you can find if upholstery is reproduced before you commit.  There are good buys to be had, good luck, Todd C                 

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I spent most of my youth buying and fixing up Fiats. I felt they were the best sports car for the dollar in their day and technologically superior to the Brits. While I don't necessarily regret those 23 Fiats I tinkered with I do regret not sampling other flavors that were available to me at the time. Lots of cheap but driveable cars in the late 70s-80s that I passed up because I was stuck on a singular brand.

 

Eventually I did try a few other things (66 Chevy p/u, Mk1 Ford Fiestas, '65 F100, 79 Austin Mini, 86 Audi Coupe, '86 Honda CRX Si) and am glad I did. Still lots more I'd love to sample (Corvair, Model T, Nash Metropolitan, any Packard). Life is too short not to sample as many flavors of ice cream as possible. You won't like them all but the thing is none of these has to be permanent. If you buy a car that is moderately popular you can always sell it on, and if bought right not lose much or any money in the process.

 

I'm sort of between collector cars right now as I play with the racing bug but when the interest wanes I'll be back browsing the Hemmings classifieds or trolling the car shows looking for the next car that catches my interest.

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FIATs certainly were cooler (more air vents than Brits) and if you knew to clean the sludge from the oil slinger on the crank, they were very reliable. Still remember a rental 1200 Spyder I had for a while, had never seen anything before (and few since) I could shift as fast and a 124 Spyder was the first for me with a five speed. Also liked a top you could just reach back and pull up and not an erector set.

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11 hours ago, padgett said:

a 124 Spyder was the first for me with a five speed. Also liked a top you could just reach back and pull up and not an erector set.

 

My first sports car was a used 124 Spider, I had been considering an MG or Triumph and sort of fell into the Fiat (staying open to changing loyalties, yes?).  I also felt the Fiat was a few steps ahead of the British in features and best of all the interior and trunk were surprisingly roomy and the top a marvel of simplicity.  My 1976 Alfa Spider also had these plusses, in my opinion those Pinninfarina designs were brilliant except for the rust, but I guess the British had that feature too, Todd C     

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if you're not planning on rebuilding the motor itself, then what difference does it make? the resto thing does take alot more looking for stuff, having to settle for used stuff because nobody makes it. it gets more expensive. never, i dont think, get your money out of something like my 62 leSabre.  just polishing the pits out of chrome and re-chroming the dash pieces is WAY out of my budget.  what about a Coyote engine in your stang? if that car doesn't do it for you, kinda like i'm tired of my 55 truck, then get something that makes you excited. (like we'd all like to do with our women).  i was always a chevy guy, when it comes to this pontiac engine i'm building i'm a total douche. it sucks. which is why i said that unless you are rebuilding the engine, buy whatever you want. but if you are going to rebuild it, i would suggest you let someone else to it for you. it really is too much to take in for an old coot like me. i'm 60, don't know your age, but think you might get my drift.  my 66 tempest was great for me. because it ran and was all there. it didn't need anything. after a $3K paint job it was a show car. (well new seats too). but i fell in love with pontiacs.  i'm not so much a Brand loyalist, but i do only seem to want those muscle cars from the late 60's 70-73.  like most of the world, unfortunately! 

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I know the feeling very well, I myself almost feel bored at times I have been collecting and restoring Chevrolet's for almost 40 years. I spcifically was involved with same 4 years of production. I felt there was not much to learn or see, an even contemplated getting out of the hobby. While I still stayed with Chevrolet's I bought one 30 years older then the ones I collected and it freshened things up. I was fortunate that I had both the space and money to keep my other cars, The change was good for me. I ended up selling that car realizing it was not my cup of tea, and I appreciated the ones that caught my interest in the first place. If it is a car that really makes your mouth water then go for it, if you never do it you might always regret it. You can find another Mustang.  Good luck with your decision

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I see many guys on here with a list of cars they have. The reason for so many is because they, just like the guy with only one, they all like many makes and models. Its the car hobby disease, millions have it, there are TV shows about it. The only thing impossible is to only really like one make or one model. Most of us feel lucky and happy to have whatever we have but deep down we always see something else that would be nice to have. I say get as many and whatever you can afford Its a hobby, its fun, its a part of our lives. 

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I liked to say that all the cars here have a purpose none of the others can match. But then I come across foundlings that need love and attention like this GTP. The Crossie is faster and handles better and the Jeep can carry more people. One Reatta is a 'vert and the other has a touchscreen, and then there is the Judge which is purely antisocial but also has AC. 

 

But having a DOHC 6 and a manual transmission (and AC) it needed TLC. And I had a space for it. And was inexpensive. And combined most of the things I said would never be in a car I owned again. But was a Pontiac. And the last of only three years Pontiac built a Grand Prix with a DOHC and manual transmission. And they only built 47 of them (am really good at rationalization about cars. Suspect most of us are). And of course to some of us, REDLINE 7000 has a special meaning.

 

As to why, was a senior in high school in south Florida in the early 60s and was too young to have a driver's license. Been over-compensating ever since. Besides, it is fun.

redline.jpg

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Hello Chef,
Thinking about it I never viewed my collector cars as "brand loyalty," but rather only my new vehicles. Until after reading the thread you started and some of the posts to the thread, but I guess it is "brand loyalty" also. A large part of brand loyalty is feeling comfortable with the product and the people associated with that product. I have been asked over the years by many people "Why do you collect Chevy's?" and I had to think about it and my answer was, "I don't know, that is a good question." I always owned new GMC trucks and Cadillacs for my wife, when asked the same question about my new vehicles, the answer was easy "I am comfortable with the dealerships" .   
 
I guess it really just comes down to feeling comfortable. My everyday vehicles I always bought new for my wife and myself. I trade them in every five years. It's not like that I never had any problems with the vehicles, there always was warranty work performed. It was easy and comfortable, I would call "Roy" the salesman at the GMC dealer, or "Charlie" the salesman at the Cadillac dealer. I know the service managers, technicians. When it's time to buy another one, it is just a matter of a few phone calls and the transaction is done, I am just very comfortable.
 
I guess the feeling of comfort can be applied to our collector cars, I just never realized it! We know where to get the parts, we know what parts are available, and what they cost. We might be in a make or model specific club and we know the people, they become close friends, it is just comfortable.
 
Chef, thanks for helping me answer a question I never had an answer for when asked
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