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1960 Corvair - Should I buy it?


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OK, So I'm a Packard driver! But a guy just offered me a four-door all original 1960 Corvair. The car is complete, with lots of spare parts from another parts car. Almost no rust, engine is free.

The car did not run when I looked at it this evening, but the owner says he had it running around in his yard last year. Power Glide transmission.

If I can get it running enough to move it back and forth in the driveway what do you experts think it should be worth? The guy only wants $350, and that includes the Corvair shop manual and a back seat full of spare parts.

Thanks for any and all help!

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Jay

For the $350.00 I would think you could have a lot of fun fixing up the car. With todays gas prices I'm sure it would get gret gas milage and make a great daily drive if nothing else. If it is not repairable to make run you have sellable parts and could ( I shudder to say ) scrap the remains for more than the $350.00...That is if and only if it is not repairable and you have offered parts to a Corvair Collector.

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$350 is nothing. If you don't like it you could sell it for scrap iron and get more than that.

It would be a shame to do it. I happen to like Corvairs and if someone offered me a deal like that I would grab it.

Get it on the road and you will have a car that is easy and fun to drive, gets good mileage (about 25 per gallon) and is surprisingly roomy inside.

The drawbacks? It is the weirdest car ever made by GM. You will have to learn how to fix cars all over again, what you know now will have only limited applications. If this is too much trouble, it would be better to pass on the car.

The second drawback is the lack of a heater. They could be bought with a gas burning heater but even if it has one, it probably quit working some time during the Johnson administration.

Don't worry about the so called deadly handling. Government tests proved the car's handling is not dangerous.

Old cars price guide value $360 for a parts car, $1080 for a restorable car.

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I think you would be making a terrible mistake getting the car. They fall apart and even Mr. Nadar wrote about them. I think you should pass on it and allow me to get it out of there.

OK, so that wasn't very honest. I have to agree with Rusty. They are good cars and wouldn't mind having one. They are fun but do need attention (I guess the same as any classic) that you have to keep up on. Parts are readily available.

I'd buy it in a heartbeat.

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How many people have ever actually read and understood Unsafe At Any Speed?

I have, and it convinced me that Ralph Nader is a phony. I wouldn't trust anything he said, and a little digging reveals that he is motivated a lot more by self interest than he lets on.

The Corvair was doomed from birth anyway. Frankly the rear engine economy car was rendered obsolete by front wheel drive the day the Austin Mini debuted in 1959. Ironically this was just about the time the Corvair reached the market.

I don't believe there was another new rear engine car after the Corvair, although at one time they were very popular all over Europe. The front wheel drive car became the thing, as soon as they figured out how to make it. Every small car today is front drive.

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  • 3 weeks later...

They CAN be a good little car. Drove a 64 Monza convertible with a 110 engine for 208 thousand miles and you could park it on a white carpet with no oil leaks. Why? Every time it was worked on it was treated like an airplane engine with every nut/bolt that anchored in aluminum being coated with anti seize and religious use of an inch pound and foot pound torque wrench. Later had a 66 with a Crown Engineering mid engine kit, a 350hp 327, all the suspension and ground effect goodies, and Pirelli radials. I would have loved to have gotten Nadar into the passengers seat, his lefty, liberal little panties would have been declared a toxic waste site.

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  • 1 month later...

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Rusty_OToole</div><div class="ubbcode-body">How many people have ever actually read and understood Unsafe At Any Speed?

I have, and it convinced me that Ralph Nader is a phony. I wouldn't trust anything he said, and a little digging reveals that he is motivated a lot more by self interest than he lets on.

The Corvair was doomed from birth anyway. Frankly the rear engine economy car was rendered obsolete by front wheel drive the day the Austin Mini debuted in 1959. Ironically this was just about the time the Corvair reached the market.

I don't believe there was another new rear engine car after the Corvair, although at one time they were very popular all over Europe. The front wheel drive car became the thing, as soon as they figured out how to make it. Every small car today is front drive. </div></div>---- LET'S NOT FORGET THE "PONTIAC FIERO"

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I guess controversy follows many cars, and the Corvair is no exception. Aside from all the 'bad press,' honestly, how much fun is this car to drive? It isn't.

I have a few classics, but the one LEAST driven is the Corvair. When local shows come up, I bring the '57 BelAir or the '64 Mustang. Rarely does the Corvair come out of its stall, mostly because people really don't care about it. Certainly, it is a shoebox style with no classic features. On the freeway, the front end bounces with each gust of wind, which 'floats' the steering and it gives that momentary feeling of having much less control.

My suggestion is, if you are looking for a restoration, get one you are passionate about; something you can put your 'soul' into. When you're done, you won't ever want to give it up.

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  • 2 weeks later...

If the car isn't rusty is definitely worth the asking price. The 4 doors tend to rust under the rear window roof overhang and of coruse the usual floor and rocker panel areas.

I have owned 20 Corvairs including my current 65 Monza that is an AACA Senior Car. They are extrememly easy to wrok on and I have taken Corvairs that haven't run in 20 years and have them running in a matter of a couple of days. The Powerglides are basically indestructable.

Go for it.

BOB

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  • 2 weeks later...

If you don't think Corvairs are fun to drive, perhaps you need to really learn how to drive. Corvairs are unique, and as such require special attention and skills. I've owned 12 Corvairs, and loved them all. The tire pressures are critical, and radial tires are the best thing for a Corvair.

With that being said, the 1960 model is quite a bit different from all succeeding years. All 1960s had the gasoline heater, which is very effective and easy to fix.

If you are serious about Corvairs, get a copy of the Clark's Corvair Parts catalog. It has a lot of helpful information, and is a must for any Corvair enthusiast.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I would definitely love to have one in the US for my trips here. I'm having a lot of fun restoring my 1960 4 door in Bolivia. They are easy to fix, although different. Figure out a few things like carb balancing, tire pressures, and use the Corvair forums for help. Sure, the 60 has some unique parts (actually early 60's have a number of differences from late 60's, and of course from 61's, but parts are available.

If you want to see my 21 months of fun, click on this:

http://www.widman.biz/Corvair/corvair.html

db_2007-1-20_012__Small_9.jpg

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