1966 Chevrolet Stepside Pickup – $3200

“I have an old 1966 Chevrolet stepside truck for sale. It is a straight 6, 4-speed manual truck. It runs and drives great. It has a good body on it. No issues, just cosmetic. Doesn’t leak… Its a great runner. Drove all the way to Hope and back last week no problem. Good on gas too! Everything works on the truck including the horn, signals, headlights, wipers, tail lights, brake lights, gauges, original am radio, interior dome light. It has nice oak fencing on the box which is fairly new. Professionally done to haul firewood and whatever. it has a plywood sheet for the bed and the original wood for the bed is bad so the plywood sheet does the trick. It gets looks where ever I go. Has a bit of rust on rocker and cab corners, but patch work or replacing doesn’t cost much. Dont want to bother painting it because it is a great work truck that gets a lot of attention. I have extra parts. If you buy this truck, you drive it away. AGAIN NO LEAKS AND SUPER EASY TO WORK ON. It truly is a great driver. $3200 bucks …. call 604-725-8449.”

Well, as anyone that’s up into the wee hours can tell you, Vancouver’s evenings have recently taken on that cold bite of moist air that’s been the harbinger of Fall in this region for eons. Rolling in on the building evening fog each night, Autumn signifies shorter days and colder weather ahead and is sure to be accompanied by an ever present threat of precipitation, be it either of the liquid or solid variety. And so too shall it come to pass that car enthusiasts and collectors all over the lower mainland will nestle their prized possessions away for another year. But that doesn’t mean you need to consign yourself to the crappy taupe Corolla in the driveway, at least not so long as there are vehicles like this available. Representing the first year of the Chevrolet C/K pickup truck, this 1966 Chevrolet stepside is the perfect companion for the terrible weather we’ll soon be facing down, and hails from an era in which Chevrolet pickup trucks saw success on a scale that they’d never known before. Recognizing that custom tailoring was a surefire way to win sales, Chevrolet significantly upped their options list for the ’62 model year, offering a whopping 203 different varieties and combinations of pickup truck. Subsequently, sales rose… a lot. In fact, for the three years of ’64, ’65, and ’66, the Chevrolet pickup truck set all-time sales records for Chevrolet, due in large part to that simple fact that buyers could have it any way they wanted it.

This of course means that now, many decades removed from their heyday, you’re pretty much guaranteed never to see another one just like this. The combination of a straight six, manual gearbox, and stepside box means it was probably ordered as a basic work truck, which in turn makes its good condition all the more appreciable. Of course, there are some issues: there are some dents to be found along the hood and what looks to be some wrinkling along the leading edge of the driver’s door, but if the ad is to be believed, it’s at least mechanically sound.  And should any of those dinged or dented parts prove simply too irksome to withstand, there are all manner of online and mail order companies prepared to sell both reproduction and NOS parts for these particular trucks, and the aftermarket support seems to grow by the day for these early C/K pickups. Rapidly gaining merit as a legitimate collector’s truck (as opposed to the frequently hot-rodded ’67 through ’72 models), more and more of these are being bought up by collectors and restorers. This in turn is making them harder and harder to find in workable condition such as this, which is precisely what landed this particular truck a feature here on CYSB: you wouldn’t feel bad tossing a set of skis, a mountain bike, or a beer keg in the back and heading out for some fun. However, any potential buyer would be well served to address the rust the seller has mentioned before winter truly hits, and would be even better served to spend a few days underneath the truck with a paintbrush and some POR-15 to prevent further rot from taking hold. But, overall, a great old truck that’d really be easy for a first time classic car buyer to hop into and enjoy, without the headaches something rarer or more complex might bring.

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1966 Chrysler 300 – $5100

“1966 4 door Chysler 300. This car is in excellent shape. VERY minimal rust..almost none. Runs and Drives great. Fully insured. Has a 383. Carb is rebuilt and the paint was redone in 2010 would make an amazing lowrider. $5100. Email me and ill get back to you within the same day. Shane”

Although Chrysler seems hell bent on erasing their past, the reality is that the car that brought them into this millennium riding a wave of success owed both its name and much of its attitude to a Chrysler from decades ago: the Chrysler 300. Birthed in 1955 as a line of exclusive and luxurious high performance sedans, the first generation spanned a full decade and has come to be known as the 300 letter series cars for their annual nonsensical alphabetical progression from C-300 (the first cars were actually letterless and are known as 300-A’s in some circles) to their termination in 1965 with the 300L (they skipped “i” as well). For 1966, Chrysler dropped the letters, gave the car a facelift, and introduced the world to the 1966 Chrysler 300. Available in two door hardtop, two door convertible, and four door hardtop variants in the U.S., with Canadian showrooms also endowed with a four door sedan format, the car was no slouch. In fact, you couldn’t get it equipped with anything smaller than Mopar’s 383 big block. Horsepower ratings ranged from 325 to 365 horsepower, with the top rung “TNT” 440 big block producing a prodigal 480 pound feet of torque. Although not as well recognized as the feature-laden and handsomely styled Lincolns and Cadillacs of the day, the Chrysler 300 did set a standard for powerful executive sedans, becoming a sort of BMW M5 or E63 AMG for the burgeoning and Beatles-obsessed American masses.

Of course, the 300’s less prominent status also means you can pick one up for a relative steal compared to contemporary Continentals and Cadillacs, and this here is a prime example of that. Looking lustrous under a fresh coat of paint and sporting a 383, it appears to be in great shape whilst the current insurance would indicate it passed AirCare, and must not run too badly either. In fact, if I were a betting man, I’d wager that it was that particularly annoying local institution that catalyzed the carburetor rebuild, but as always, I could be wrong! Things to watch out for would be any overzealous applications of bondo underneath that fine looking paint, as well as the familiar America sedan rust-prone spots around and under the doors, floors, and trunk. Furthermore, as a pretty luxurious car, any potential buyer will want to keep a weather eye for any missing trim or switchgear. Although relatively well supported, it can be tough to locate exterior (and thus damage prone) trim pieces as well as interior bits and parts. But, if it’s as advertised, then this might be one of those rare classic cars that one could just as easily use to take the family for the softest-riding Sunday afternoon cruise you’ve ever experiences as they could to pick up the boss at the airport on Monday morning. Once again, the blue text up top will take you to Craigslist ad!

196? NSU 110 – $1500

“Early sixties I think, runs good, needs clutch pedal repair. Call Jack: 604-723-4934”

Well, apparently karma has come knocking on my door in the form of a completely fried clutch that has left one of (newer) family vehicles completely devoid of the ability to make forward progress. Such is the price of not updating the blog for a week. So, lest a vehicle I feel slightly more strongly about take a liking to its friend’s immobile status, I best bring CYSB back to the fore of my priorities! And what better to do that with than something from good old West Germany that hails from the era of the commie threat, Rusky movie villians, and a socio-political movement that saw the youth of a nation tearing walls down rather than putting tents up. Although undetermined in actual age, this NSU Type 110, by nature of its very existence, must have been made sometime in the short (er… one year) span between  1965 and 1967, as the car hadn’t been created in 1964, and underwent a formal name change in 1968, becoming the NSU 1200. Slightly larger than the better known Prinz, the 110 was NSU’s earlier take on a bigger format of automobile, with the only other (and subsequently hereafter known as “later “) take being the Ro 80 of 1967-77. Powered by a downrated version of the same engine that would find its way beneath the trunklid of the peppy NSU Prinz 1000 TT, the 1,085 cc four cylinder that motivated the NSU 110 produced an advertised 52 horsepower, but certainly won’t be the most interesting feature of the car for any potential owners. No, it’ll probably be the fact that just like the Prinz and wildly successful Beetle of the same era, the engine in the 110 is to be found within the trunk. An attempt to increase traction by locating the engine squarely over the drive wheels, the move led to the car being lauded as a pretty good performer, but criticized as particularly vulnerable to high speed cross winds such as those found on the autobahn.

Now, this particular one certainly won’t suffer from that particular problem because A) it, nor we, are in Germany and B) it doesn’t look like it’s going to be seeing high speed anything for a while. Certainly one of the roughest cars we’ve seen on CYSB, I’d not have featured it if it weren’t for the undeniably alluring combination of the car’s relatively low price, obscure manufacturer, bizarre layout, and, believe it or not, undying reputation for reliability. Although parts are probably nigh impossible to source, NSU’s have enjoyed an almost Eastern Bloc-like status as some of the toughest and longest-lived little cars on the planet due to both their excellent design and ridiculously stoic manufacture. Take, for example, the car’s underside. Typically one of the most rust-prone areas you’re liable to find on a car made of mid-sixties steel, NSU’s are usually nearly rust free thanks to an a zinc coating that nearly amounts to galvanizing the entire underside. Likewise, the mechanics of the cars are both simple and robust, with NSU once claiming that a clutch could be changed on a 110 in just 30 minutes. When it comes to this particular car, however, I’d be more concerned with how long it would take to find interior door panels and new seat covers as it looks as if the interior will need some TLC. But, if you’re the type that wants something truly different, but preposterously Teutonic in nature, this might be just the car.

1966 Ford Thunderbird – $2950

“Restoration project car, 1966 Thunderbird, 390, big block, runs great! New carb, rebuilt transmission. She is in good shape, and daily drivable. Needs some work and T.L.C., not show worthy, Please only call if you understand what that entails. $2950, to a good home. Please contact Nick at 778-891-3284, no emails.”

Looking at this particular example of automotive history, it’s hard to believe that this car’s forebears could have ever come out of a desire to compete directly with the Chevrolet Corvette. By 1966, just 11 years had passed since the then-new Thunderbird shamed the Corvette with superior horsepower figures and performance, but those 11 years had not been kind to the Thunderbird. While 1966 saw the mighty 427 big block ushered under the Corvette’s shapely hood, Ford spent the year escorting the Thunderbird’s big, luxurious fourth generation from the premises in order to make way for a newer, bigger, and vastly uglier fifth generation. Marking the last year that the Thunderbird could be called legitimately good looking, the 1966 model year features a trio of V8’s underhood (275- and 315-horsepower 390 cubic inch V8s as well as a 345-horsepower 428 cubic inch) and enough luxury features inside to sink a ship… which was ironic given the ‘bird’s land yacht status. The new Highway Pilot Automatic Speed Control set a new standard for cruise control systems, while the six way power seats ensured complete comfort for the driver and his passenger, and both new features were merely bolstering the already impressive list of amenities that included easy-ingress and egress rotating seats, tilting steering columns, power windows and locks, and a variety of other contrivances.

Of course, the downside to all these relatively complex luxury systems is that ownership of aging Thunderbirds could be a troublesome and trying experience. But, they say nothing unites people like a common foe, and few enthusiast groups are more cohesive and helpful than Thunderbird enthusiasts. With a strong aftermarket to support their penchant for replacement parts and a huge knowledge base, it can be surprisingly easy to keep one of these cars on the road. However, this being B.C., and these being cars festooned with trim and panel joints, it’s extremely important that any potential buyer do their due diligence and inspect for rust. However, if the photos are any illustration, it looks like it’s in relatively decent shape, although it looks like there’s something around the rear wheelarch that might need investigating. Clicking through to the actual ad will demonstrate the benefits of a proper hard top on an old car such as this, as the interior (what we can see of it, anyway) looks quite clean. But perhaps most telling is the inclusion of “to a good home” in the price. After putting in what appears to be a few of his own dollars, obviously the owner still cares about this old car, and that’s a really great thing to see. These are great cars that can still work as reliably as they did when they were new, and they’re extremely pleasant to drive on a daily basis, making this one yet another car you should buy.