Driving the same car for 53 years

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An evening pause: An American car before Robert McNamara introduced built-in obsolescence.

Hat tip Cotour.



  • Chops

    Awesome !

  • m d mill

    I did not do quite as well as her. My only car was a 1981 honda civic hatchback, which was bought new and my only car for 37 years. I finally had to break down and buy a new 2017 Hyundai Accent hatchback , and let the old girl go.
    Hopefully this vehicle will be as dependable.

  • pzatchok

    Post less four doors are hard to find.

  • hondo

    Whoa! She has more mileage on her car than me! 116K to 114K
    ’02 Ford Explorer XT

  • Kevin R.

    Sweet. But I hope she’s got seat belts.

    Robert, she’s had it since ‘57 – 63 years.

  • wodun

    Not even 2k miles a year? Not certain that qualifies as dependable. I have a car nearing 300,000 miles.

  • wayne

    This is pretty cool, but I as well, hope she added seat-belts somewhere along the line.
    That steering column alone will kill her with blunt force trauma in an accident.

    I thought William Knudsen (from GM) was the genius behind yearly model changes? (Which granted, is slightly different than planned-obsolescence.)


    “Signal 30”
    – Highway Safety Films 1959-
    (Lots of authentic gore— I’m surprised YouTube doesn’t age-restrict it.)

  • wayne: Knudsen very well could have come up with yearly model changes. I have read several histories that all cite McNamara with coming up with the terrible idea of planned obsolescence, which is nothing more than lowering the standards of construction so that the vehicles go bad sooner.

    McNamara went on to give us the Vietnam war, badly fought with no end game.

  • wayne

    Mr. Z.–
    Thanks for that. Apparently, Knudsen introduced the ability to do yearly model changes with a relatively brief change-over period.
    Totally agree our auto-industry got very sloppy in the 1960’s/70’s.

    How to win WW-2 by unleashing private enterprise:

    Mason Lecture Series –
    “Freedom’s Forge: How American Business Produced Victory in World War II”
    Dr. Arthur Herman
    National WW-2 Museum April 2013

    –wherein, William Knudsen & Henry J. Kaiser get a lot of credit for mobilizing private enterprise to produce for WW-2.

  • commodude

    And McNamara also gave us the light force into Iraq that gave us the mess we have now.

    Some people are just gifts that keep on giving.

  • Call Me Ishmael

    “Signal 30”

    Ah, memories. I was required to watch “Signal 30” in driver’s ed, which would have made me about 15.

  • wayne

    “The Perfect Crime”
    Calvin Company Kansas City, Missouri 1954
    (Directed by Robert Altman)

    (a plea for better roads, sponsored by Caterpillar Tractor Co.)

  • Lee S

    Bob…. Sorry I’m so rubbish at this stuff… But I changed my email again to a Google account… ( Don’t judge me…) I have a couple of decent evening pauses for you, but don’t know where to send them… You hide your address well! ( As so you should!)
    And I hope you are well… Your posting had been brief the last few days…
    Best wishes from your left winger fan in Sweden ;-)

  • eddie willers

    I can understand her loyalty. First car I bought was a ’57 Chevy (210 model, 283ci engine, 3 on the tree with overdrive) that I got in 1967 from the original, fastidious owner. The only real regret I have in life is selling that car!

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