Diego’s AutoHunter Picks | ClassicCars.com Journal

I hope you like American cars because this week’s AutoHunter Picks are from the North American continent. All vehicles here feature a V8 driving the rear wheels. Sounds old-fashioned? Listen, Skippy, there’s nothing more fun than driving a V8 and leaving twin streaks of rubber behind. Is there fun to be had in torque steer or off-throttle oversteer? Sure, but that’s for another week on AutoHunter.

1953 Chevrolet Bel Air Sport Coupe
I never understood people’s attraction to pre-1955 Chevrolets. Starting with the 1949s, I thought they were pretty dumpy, but the 1953-54s start to look better, which helps me “get” the attraction and see how it was on its way to becoming “The Hot One.”. Additionally, 1953 was the year that the Bel Air became a full series and not just a pretty hardtop (officially the Sport Coupe).

This 1953 Chevrolet Bel Air hardtop is powered by the 235cid Blue Flame Six backed by Powerglide automatic. The wiring has been updated to 12 volts, and the windshield wipers have a New Port Engineering electric conversion, both plusses for the modern age. There’s even a split manifold dual exhaust system for better breathing. Add some Torq Thrusts like what the owner has done, and you have a cool car that you can drive anywhere.

1970 Pontiac GTO Hardtop
In my hometown, there were several 1970 GTOs running around. One was owned by the son of a lady who went to my synagogue. Another, a Pepper Green coupe at the Faulk Road gas station, ended up being a Ram Air IV and is now in Florida. And then there was a blue convertible that I’d used to see coming from the other direction on my way to school. Over time, the attrition was such that it ended up decrepit in front of the owner’s house, which I discovered once I was old enough to explore on my bike.

So, I have a soft spot for 1970 GTOs like this one. Per the data plate, it was originally built in the very attractive combination of Atoll Blue with a white vinyl top and blue interior. Mechanical equipment includes a M20 four-speed behind the standard 400/350. This Goat has air conditioning too, so you purists probably want to score a PHS invoice to determine whether it’s a real stick/AC car. I imagine some may like the spoiler that one owner added along the way. A pretty car that won’t require refinancing your mortgage.

1966 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible
I never spend my time looking for Corvettes, but I want a C2 in the baddest way. Ideally, it would be a coupe that is lacking its original equipment so I can build some retro street monster with Cragar GTs on full display. I don’t favor any year though I think the 1965-67 have the nicest side vents of the bunch, and it makes no sense to pay a premium for a Split-Window. One day, I’ll get my wish.

I’d also be perfectly happy with a stock Corvette like this 1966 convertible. Seller claims the Silver Pearl metallic droptop has 22,662 documented miles, so this one is for the guy or gal who’s into pampering more than driving. Convertibles also look gorgeous with the accessory hardtop, which this one has. Plus, this C2 is powered by the top small-block of the year, the 350-horsepower L79 327. Just a very sweet machine from every angle.

2003 Lincoln Town Car
I still have trouble understanding why people like these and their lesser Ford and Mercury equivalents, but I know the deal: traditional RWD American sedan. Do any still exist? Cadillac has several, but they are practically niche these days. Having been driven around NYC in many of these, they tend to come off as a modern-day Checker in some respects. Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned?

Yet I’ve never seen a Checker with a fake convertible top. There’s something about this 2003 Lincoln Town Car Signature Edition that makes me want to marry a lady with long, painted fingernails who watches Coffee Talk. The Parchment top and interior trim nicely complement the Autumn Red hue. The 239-horsepower V8 is Ford’s Modular 4.6 SOHC, so there’s room to hop it up. With only 56,785 miles on the odomenter, this classic American has plenty of miles left to drive into the sunset.