12th Sep 2015, 09:47

I own a 70 Chevelle SS Big Block 4 speed with air. It is a mid size full frame car. It's not a traditional family car as equipped, but is very comfortable and well optioned. Not a 76 LeSabre, but is also a GM from the 70s. I wanted a car that one or both of my children can go to car shows in. It's nice having a rear seat. I have driven this car some distance to shows. An extremely reliable car. It gets 8 1/2 MPG on 93 octane. Many full size cars from this era were also 10 MPG including a Fleetwood Cadillac I had. Many Chevelles settle out on the expressway and it's a very nice riding car. I had unibody SS Camaros that rattled and were uncomfortable. The Chevelle is a very heavy car, even as a mid sized car.

The topic was on full frame cars from the 70s. So yes it's not completely relevant to those shopping for a 76 LeSabre. If you like these era cars, you can have a very nice balance of luxury and performance. Finding a classic with air and amenities like power windows, tilt wheel etc and a back seat makes for a very enjoyable car. Cars with no power steering and drum manual brakes for example make most driving a chore. There's a lot of cars from this era that are very nice to drive. The Monte Carlo even had an SS car with a 4 speed option. Buick had a 455 GS. I even like the boat tail Buick Riviera as an alternative to the Buick LeSabre being reviewed here. There's endless choices, which makes it hard to own just a single car, past or present.

12th Sep 2015, 14:37

I don't think many of today's cars will be on the road 30 years from now.

From a mechanic's point of view, everything from engines to transmissions, suspension and steering are all computer controlled. Don't forget back up cameras, GPS systems, bluetooth etc. etc. All these things fail and are very expensive to repair. Most owners will junk it and buy a new car, instead of wasting the money to fix them.

12th Sep 2015, 17:32

Boat tail Riviera; yes, excellent choice, I love all 3 years of that style. Also I have no doubts that your Chevelle is a reliable car. Try telling that to the commentor 21st Aug 2015 23:35.

12th Sep 2015, 17:56

Does anyone agree a mid size Ranchero or El Camino should be compared to a full size luxury car review? Frame or no frame? It's not even a car. Well sort of. Or is it a truck?

Someone said America no longer made a rear wheel drive full frame car in 2015. If anyone sees a 2015 Ranchero or 2015 El Camino, or any other actual cars, I would be interested. Sports cars as well.

As far as 30 years from now, the ones I predict will still be around will be 2015 domestic sports cars from the big 3 with 2 doors and V8s. The ones lacking any high appeal or visual impact will likely be recycled. This has already happened historically with both import and domestic models from the 70s and 80s. People are not going to drop money for a replacement engine or trans in a car where the value equals those parts. It's parted out, sold on Internet sites or sold for scrap. A lot of cars don't make it into garages, and rust out or bake in the sun. Even a good quality paint job with bodywork today is high. Even with YouTube videos etc, an average buyer may opt out and buy newer. Some may find car payments easier to handle than high shop repairs. Getting hit on a single repair that may run a couple thousand up may not be in the family budget. A lot of people just want a reliable car to go to work or errands today.

Honestly I find the modern technology challenging, and do not have a lot of free time. I also fret taking a car in a shop and maybe ending up with it worse than before. Or abused on a test drive by a mechanic wanting an opportunity to drive the daylights out of them over lunch.

Many of the unique performance cars will no doubt be here in 30 years. We are talking about 2015 models driving still in 2045. I would be surprised if our Crossover even lasting that long. We won't be driving it past 2020, but will keep an eye out for it when we sell it.

14th Sep 2015, 01:05

The El Camino/ Ranchero comment was being compared to the Corvette comment. Two seat cars. Somebody simply stated if they had their choice they would take one of those over a Vette. Is that a crime? I would too.

"Someone said America no longer made a rear wheel drive full frame car in 2015"

Please reread comment 2:47 on Sept. 11. This should clear up the confusion that it is FULLSIZE body on frame rear drives that are no longer made.

This is going around in circles and getting nowhere.

14th Sep 2015, 15:55

How about a factory conversion van? They are full size, rear wheel drive, full frame with a 3/4 ton frame. That's what I bought after selling my Cadillac, and it had a matching price tag as well. Not a standard every day conservative sedan. These are plush and outstanding in trips as a new vehicle.

What about pick ups? Loaded 4 doors, every conceivable option. Full size, full frames being produced today.

However, to really stay on topic, how about reviewing a comparable 1976 model equal to specs of a 1976 Buick LeSabre. If anyone owns one, the percentages are likely small that they will dash out and buy a Ranchero as a comparison if any year. In fact many new Vette owners also own a new Cadillac. Maybe a 600 plus factory HP with manual trans no less, to share garage space.

14th Sep 2015, 16:14

Sorry but the interiors in cars back in the 70s were not that great in general. It's only been more recent that most Americans started really putting an emphasis on the interiors. I traded in an old Prius for a used Chevy Volt. The interior of the Volt is like that of a top of the line luxury car from 5 years ago. Amazingly comfortable.

The concern over electronics in cars is overblown. ECUs have been in cars since the early 70s. We have had numerous cars from the 90s-2000s go 250-300k no problem. One was a 98 Avalon that rang up 320,000 miles and it had power-everything and an '02 Tundra that now has around 335,000 or something, and it too came packed with gizmos. The Volt I expect to run just as long or longer.

Even from a base level, the number of microns worn from cylinder walls back in the 70s versus today is greatly more then than now; on the order of 4 and 5 times as much wear would occur between an older and newer car.

Interestingly enough, I see a TON of 30 year old cars on the road daily, and they aren't being driven as restored classics, but being used as everyday beater commuter cars. Heck - My truck is now 20 years old and it's still as tight and reliable as it was the day I bought it.