All the things you need in a truck, and none of the things you don't
Front suspension worn out. Springs had also been cut.
Broke 3 carrier bearing cradles.
Broken turn signal switch.
I bought this truck from a friend of a friend about 13 years ago for $500. The body only had one or two very tiny dings on it – reason enough by itself to buy it for that price.
The engine was shot, though it did drive home.
Had to replace the front springs (someone cut them with a torch to lower it – which any front end alignment shop will tell you totally ruins the front end geometry). Since I was already there, I did the entire front end (bushings, ball joints, etc).
Originally it had a stick shift, but when I got it, it had a TH350 transmission, and always felt like it needed to shift one more gear, especially when you got on the freeway. About 9 years ago, put a TH700R/4 with lockup torque converter in it, and that was just what the doctor ordered. The longer 700 transmission also eliminated one thing that kept annoying me every so often – the two piece drive shaft’s carrier bearing. I threw away the old two piece drive shaft and replaced it with a single drive shaft from a late 70’s Monte Carlo – perfect fit.
It also had a bad turn signal switch in the steering column. Rather than try to find an old one that was still good (and would shut off after completing a turn) and then install it without breaking the old brittle plastic, I opted to buy a new one.
Though it may sound like a lot of work, it’s really not on one of these older trucks, and I did the majority of it in large “chunks”. I have put well over 150,000 miles on it since getting it – and many of those miles are very ‘hard’ miles. It rides like a truck – you feel every deviation in the road. That is the whole idea though, since it IS a truck. This is definitely the most reliable vehicle I have ever had, know that at any time, I can get in it, and go. I’m guessing mine is one of the rarer models, since it has leaf springs in back on the short bed, and 6 lug wheels. In California, where wrecking yards have plentiful parts for just about every car imaginable, finding parts that are in good condition for the 67-72 models, while not impossible, is extremely difficult. Though I have to admit it’s a guess, the reason I think it’s so difficult is the fact that so many of them are still on the road – as I continue to see them everywhere.
Very customizable, with lots and lots of room for those ‘home made’ customizations that might be a bit bulkier than your aftermarket parts might be (like my own power windows). This is the 2nd of 3 I have owned of this body style, and really I can’t imagine myself finding a reason to get any other.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 12th January, 2003