Following up here on some of the responses...
* I live near the coast so ac isn’t required but would be nice to have an option to add it as a project
* I want to emphasis the need for a daily driver - not something I’ll be keeping stored in a garage all the time
* For this reason, I don’t want something that has such a nice paint job that I’ll be worried about keeping it cleaned all the time - cars with patina or older paint job are a-ok with me
* I absolutely must have a vehicle that can handle street driving but will also handle the occasional trip on a highway where I need to keep up with traffic at 65-75mph (sadly, I think this will rule out options like the Model A)
* I prefer a larger vehicle that I can use for occasionally transferring music instruments or the occasional trip to Home Depot for supplies
Great point regarding limited rear-view in 40s vehicles.
Is there a Ford Deluxe option or replica or restomod that will work? I love this style of car and it’s size is very utilitarian for what I want.
Ok let’s talk repairs. First and foremost, I need reliability in the sense that I want to enjoy my driving without always worrying if I’ll have to be inconvenienced by a breakdown. If that means I need to make an investment in the beginning to get it there, I’m happy to do so. Ongoing maintenance I do myself is also fine.
I also don’t mind working on the car or making repairs as needed myself, but preferably, I’d be able to choose the pace and degree of repairs on my own terms, most of the time. Stuff always happens, even with newer cars so I don’t expect perfection.
Recently, my Camry started shifting slowly and the check engine light came on. I got the codes checked and autozone said I needed a new intermediate speed sensor A.
Ok so I called the Toyota parts house and they said there could be up to 4 of these sensors. They didn’t know which one was A. Oook.
So I YouTubed and found a tutorial but they called the sensors NC and NT. Called Toyota again and they didn’t know what these acronyms meant or where they were located or how they related to sensor A vs B.
In the end, there were two sensors located near each other - they were the exact same part. I order two from Amazon, replaced them and all was fine until ...
The vehicle was idling very rough. Long story short, when you unplug the battery, you have to do some ignition key combination to get the Camry into a state to “relearn” the idle.
Basically, there was a ton of misinformation and unknowns that made the process much less pleasurable even though in the end, the repair was physically easy to do and cost less than $50.
I know very little about classic or older cars but I get the sense it might be easier to install a power steering conversion kit than it is to troubleshoot all of the modern electronics in my Camry.
I’m open to the fact that maybe a classic car isn’t right. I just think the look of most newer vehicles are down right boring and plastic and cheap.
I could care less about impressing others. I’m restoring my 1927 house, I love history and my personality is one that appreciates older things. Having a vehicle that matches who I am is icing on the cake.
Hope this sheds more light. I’m grateful for all of your ideas and helping this layman expand his understanding.