Posts from ‘Classic Cars’
By Frank Peiler
Anybody who knows a little something about automotive history knows that Hudson merged with Nash in 1954 to form American Motors. As a result, AMC had to come up with a new Hudson in record time to make the 1955 model year. The design department at Nash did a very good job transforming the Ambassador/Statesman into a new Hudson. The new car didn’t look much like a Hudson, and it certainly didn’t handle at all like previous “step-down” Hudsons, but the design was a refreshing change from the old and tired car. However, what would the 1955 Hudson look like had the merger been between General Motors, Ford Motor Company, Chrysler Corporation, or the newly merged Studebaker/Packard?
Robert De Niro was cruising the Boroughs of New York City long before he played a mentally ill cabbie in the 1976 Martin Scorsese classic Taxi Driver–six years before, to be exact. Taxi Driver hit theaters in 1976. De Niro, however, shows off an AMC Ambassador in this forgotten ad from way back in 1970.
Sometimes hindsight plays tricks on us. I have always been uncomfortable that the Talking Heads’ seminal album More Songs about Buildings and Food was available on 8-Track tape.
I associate the 1978 album with a progressive musical movement that endured through the Eighties. That fact that that same music could be purchased in a lousy, short-lived format known for premature failure is difficult for me to square.
Folks are fond of recalling epidemics. We all know about the Black Death plague of medieval times, but do you recall hearing about the Great Plague of Vienna (look it up) or the Russian Plague of 1770?
As far as automotive fads go, four-wheel steering (4WS) is one of the more technically sophisticated examples. Beginning with the 1988 model year, four American-market Japanese models were available with 4WS: the Honda Prelude Si, Mitsubishi Galant VR-4, Mazda 626 Turbo, and Mazda MX-6 GT Turbo.
Topping the Billboard charts for 1969 was “Sugar, Sugar,” a painfully catchy pop ditty released by the Archies in May of that year. You can listen to the song by watching the YouTube video below:
Though they are sometimes derided as “Yank Tanks,” traditional full-size American sedans are as much a part of U.S. car culture as the V8 engine and Interstate travel.
For the ABC television network, 1966 was a big year. The network elected to introduce 16 new programs that season–more than half of its prime-time lineup up. You can watch the intros from all of ABC’s new-for-’66 programs below.
Having been born in 1965, I can’t claim to have been very aware of the vehicles of 1970 when they were new, nor can I claim to have experienced them from behind the wheel.