Old Cars

Carspotting 2019

I love old cars! I always have. As a kid I used to be able to pinpoint the year, make, and model of any car built starting in about 1955, and of many cars built since the end of World War II. It still fills me with pleasure to find an old car parked, and I usually pause to photograph them, usually with my iPhone.

I’m a lot older now, and I’m amused to find that cars I remember debuting when I was an adult are now old and used up.

For the purposes of this annual post, I include any car 20 or more years old. Here now, the cars.

1956-71 Morris Minor 1000. I’ve seen this car at shows around town so I was pleasantly surprised to find it parked in Lions Park in Zionsville one day when Margaret and I took a walk there. I’m hardly knowledgeable in this car’s year-to-year trim changes; perhaps one of my UK readers can narrow down this car’s year better than I.

1961 Chevrolet Corvair Lakewood. This may be the rarest automobile I’ve ever found parked somewhere. Only about 33,000 Corvair wagons were ever built. Given this wagon’s Lakewood badging it has to be from 1961, as in 1962 the Lakewood name disappeared and these were just Corvair wagons.

1965 Chevrolet Corvairs. There must have been a Corvair convention nearby because these two Corvair two-doors were parked across the street from the Lakewood. I’m positive one of them is a ’65 because it has a 1965 license plate on it. I’m only pretty sure the other one is a ’65. I found all three of these Corvairs on the square in Lebanon, IN.

1967 Pontiac Tempest Custom. This car belongs to the fellow who lives two doors down from me. One day he and it were out at the curb by his house, so I went over to talk to him about his car. He said, “Would you like to drive it?” Does a drunk want a case of Jim Beam? I drove it around the neighborhood and photographed it in our community area. My neighbor has had the car for a few decades, and was friends with the original owner. He restored and gently modified it, replacing its tired but original 326 cubic-inch V8 with a crate 350 and doing other little things to it. It drove very nicely and stopped confidently on its drum brakes. Assuming the top doesn’t leak this would be a fun car to own.

1973-79 VW Bus. Good lord, but do I love these things. They were common during my 1970s kidhood and I got to ride in several. They had great visibility and plenty of room for a large crew. When Chrysler introduced its minivans in the 1980s I wondered what all the hubbub was about, because VW had already done it with its ubiquitous Bus. Spotted in downtown Zionsville.

1985 Toyota Celica Supra. A college buddy owned one of these; he bought it new. He let me drive it a time or two and it was great fun — low slung, tight handling, good acceleration. I guess this was more a boulevard cruiser than true sports car but so what? It was still a joy to drive. Spotted in downtown Zionsville.

1987-91 Honda Civic. I can’t remember the last time I saw one of these. Most of them have died a sad death because the kids all bought ’em cheap, hopped ’em up, and hooned ’em into the ground. And holy cow, is this ever an itty bitty car. When they were new they didn’t seem so small, but cars are so much taller and bulkier now. I found this in the parking garage next to my office in Downtown Indianapolis.

1987-91 Ford F-150. Ford trucks from the last 30 years are so common that it’s easy to overlook one. But here, parked in downtown Zionsville, was this one looking very nice. If I had to guess, I’d say it was an unrestored original that has received great care.

1987-91 Ford F150. When it rains, it pours. Here’s another F150 of this generation, also in very nice original condition. I found it at a nearby big-box store.

1989-93 Plymouth Sundance. This Sundance is an art project! I found it behind the dormitory my son lives in at his school.

1990-92 Oldsmobile Silhouette. Good heavens, how did GM’s designers think this design was a good idea? But these sold well enough, and were hardy enough, that I manage to find one every two years or so. I found this one at a Cracker Barrel in Indianapolis.

1992 Mercury Tracer. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I came upon this Tracer in the big-box-store parking lot. Tracers were far less common than their Ford Escort sisters, and the wagons were the rarest of them all. I know this is a ’92 as that was the first year for the lightbar grille and the last year for motorized front seat belts. I sort of wished this one had a For Sale sign in the window. I’ve always really liked these cars, ever since my dad had a terrific one in four-door hatchback form that lasted and lasted. The wagon would be just that much more useful.

1992-97 Ford F150. It was a good year for old trucks. This shortbed F150 is in like-new condition. It parked next to me in the garage where I park to go to work.

1996-99 Saturn SW. I always thought this body redesign of the original Saturn was better than the original but still weird looking. Spotted in Downtown Indianapolis. That broken side mirror and a little peeling clear coat were the only obvious flaws on an otherwise nice condition survivor.

1996-99 Toyota Celica. In profile, I always thought these looked like the old Ford Pinto. I always thought the headlight treatment was cartoonish. Spotted in the Broad Ripple neighborhood of Indianapolis.

To see all of the Carspotting posts I’ve made over the years, click here.

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Old Cars

Carspotting 2018

I photograph old cars wherever I find them parked. I found a decent lot of them in 2018: 17 to share with you. My two rules: the car has to be parked, and it has to be at least 20 years old. Here now the cars (and trucks).

1952-53 GMC truck

1952-53 GMC Truck. What a great old truck to start with. I found this on a photo walk on South Meridian Street in Indianapolis.

1967 Plymouth Fury II

1967 Plymouth Fury. It’s got to be 25 years since I’ve seen one of these on the road. During my 1970s kidhood, these were as common as pennies and usually driven by prim, proper older ladies. Found parked on the square in Crown Point, Indiana.

1968-72 GMC truck

1968-72 GMC truck. I wish GMC had changed trim details sometimes, as Chevrolet did, to make it easier to narrow down the year of these trucks. Spotted at the Rusty Bucket bar on Indianapolis’s Far Northside.

1973 VW Bus

1973-79 VW Bus. Another find on the square in Crown Point, I love how this bus was restored to basic specifications.

1974 VW Beetle

1974 VW Beetle. Margaret and I came upon this little guy while strolling through Madison, Indiana. Those aftermarket wheels have got to go.

1974 VW Super Beetle

1974 VW Super Beetle. My son and I found this one in a lot on the Purdue campus. That is what VW wheels are supposed to look like.

1980 Chevrolet Citation

1980 Chevrolet Citation. Probably the best find of the year, this car is parked on a side street right here in Zionsville. I drive by it all the time. Since this photograph someone hit it, smashing in its rear passenger door. How very sad.

1981-87 Chevrolet truck

1981-87 Chevrolet truck. I liked the styling of the generations before and after these far better, but I still wouldn’t turn down the opportunity to own one. Found in the parking lot where my wife works.

1981-89 Lincoln Town Car

1981-89 Lincoln Town Car. My aunt Betty used to drive one of these, in this or a similar blue. Found in a strip mall in Fishers, Indiana.

1982-85 Chevrolet El Camino

1982-85 Chevrolet El Camino. An unrestored original. I think these are beautiful and I have always wanted one. Spotted in Crown Point, Indiana.

1984-92 Lincoln Mark VII

1984-92 Lincoln Mark VII. Someone drove this to get groceries one day. I found it at the Meijer in Whitestown, Indiana. I always thought these were very handsome.

1986 Ford Escort Pony

1986 Ford Escort Pony. The ultimate car for the mid-1980s skinflint. Spotted at the Walmart on Indy’s Southside.

1987-90 Ford Mustang

1987-90 Ford Mustang. This is the car I wanted when I graduated college, but it was just a few thousand dollars out of my reach. Spotted at the Kroger in Brownsburg, Indiana.

1987-93 Cadillac Coupe deVille

1987-93 Cadillac Coupe DeVille. Our youngest son and I were breakfasting after seeing a heavy-metal show at the big outdoor music center in Tinley Park, Illinois, when we came upon this cruiser.

1989 Subaru Legacy

1989 Subaru Legacy. Even though this car didn’t change much through its run, I know it’s from 1989 because it has a “25th anniversay” sticker on its window. Spotted at the Zionsville Walgreens.

1989-92 Ford Ranger

1989-92 Ford Ranger. I love these little trucks. I’ve always jonesed for one. Found in the parking lot at Zionsville Community High School.

1997 BMW M3

1997 BMW M3. Not only have I spotted and shared this one before, I’ve driven this car. It’s owned by a partner in a firm I used to work for, and one day when he took me to lunch he handed me the keys. Such fun. I came upon it on Main Street in Zionsville.

Here are my Carspotting posts from 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, and a special edition after I came back from Route 66.

Old Cars

Carspotting 2017

I photograph old cars wherever I find them parked. 2017 turned out to be a great year for finding them — this is probably the biggest harvest since I started doing this, back in 2012. What a bumper crop!

My two rules: the car has to be parked, and it has to be at least 20 years old. And so, here now the cars.

1961 Ford Falcon

1961 Ford Falcon. Margaret and I had finished a big dinner at our favorite Broad Ripple restaurant and were walking the surrounding neighborhood when we came upon this like-new Falcon. It has to have been restored at some point, pretty faithfully (I do question those dog-dish hubcaps).

1968 Buick Skylark

1968 Buick Skylark. I had to move fast, as this car was preparing for takeoff. I spotted it in the parking lot at the Walmart Neighborhood Market near where I used to live.

1968 Chevrolet Camaro

1968 Chevrolet Camaro. The parking lot behind the Nickel Plate Bar and Grill in Fishers turned out to be fertile ground for old cars this year. It’s always nice to come upon a Camaro that hasn’t been resto-modded into a firebreathing muscle car.

1969 Chevrolet Camaro

1969 Chevrolet Camaro. Like this one has. At least it is tastefully done. By the way, I lived in my old neighborhood ten years and saw exactly one old car parked there…until this year. This was the first of several I saw, but I managed to photograph only this one and one other.

1970 Pontiac Firebird Esprit

1970 Pontiac Firebird Esprit. Where the Camaro above was obviously a restoration, this Firebird is an unrestored original. That’s how I prefer them! Just check out the nicks in the paint. This was another find in the nearby Walmart parking lot.

1973 Chrysler Newport Custom

1973 Chrysler Newport Custom. This is far and away my favorite find of the year. My cigar-chomping great uncle William drove a car much like this one. I remember riding in my dad’s car once as we followed William somewhere. His windshield washer nozzles were misaimed, and he took great delight in spraying washer fluid all the way over his car and onto the hood of Dad’s 1971 Chevy Impala while we waited at a light. This was another find in the Nickel Plate parking lot.

1975 Ford Thunderbird

1975 Ford Thunderbird. A neighbor in my old neighborhood kept this car parked behind his house for several months before it suddenly appeared curbside. Turns out he’d listed it on Craigslist. It lingered here for several weeks, but finally disappeared.

1973-74 VW Thing

1973-74 VW Thing. My Toyota needed some attention from my mechanic. As I parked it on his lot I spied this funky little Thing looking pretty used up.

1977 Chevrolet Corvette

1977 Chevrolet Corvette. While taking my sons out for dinner in Fishers, we came upon this electric blue Corvette. On the one hand I respect it for surviving, but on the other I’m not much of a fan of these boulevard cruisers.

1977 Ford F-150

1977 Ford F-150. A building is going up next door to where I work in Fishers, and all manner of the workers’ trucks park nearby. This is by far the oldest truck I’ve seen.

1977-81 Pontiac Firebird

1977-81 Pontiac Firebird. On the day I helped my youngest son start his college career at the University of Indianapolis, we came upon this yellow Firebird on campus. Another unrestored survivor!

1983 Buick Skylark

1983 Buick Skylark. I see this car on the road near my office almost every day. It passes by at about 11 am, like clockwork, beneath the window of a conference room where I have a daily meeting. One day I spotted it parked at the McDonald’s down the street. I never thought of these “J cars” as particularly well built, so it’s always a surprise to find one still rolling.

1983 Jeep Wagoneer

1983 Jeep Wagoneer Brougham. Indiana lets drivers of antique cars use old license plates from the car’s model year. The plate on this one was from 1983, but this grille is from 1974. Maybe the owner liked that grille better and bolted it onto his Wagoneer. Wagoneer Broughams (as this car is badged) were made only from 1981-83. It was the mid-level trim those three years, slotting below the base model and the upper-trim Limited.

1987-89 Chevy Celebrity

1987-89 Chevrolet Celebrity. I was very surprised to find this well-used old car in a very tony Zionsville neighborhood.

1988 Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera

1988 Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera. Olds made Cutlass Cieras with composite headlamps and the original six-window greenhouse for just one year: 1988. Spotted in downtown Fishers.

1989-95 Plymouth Acclaim

1989-95 Plymouth Acclaim. These changed so little across their run that it’s very hard to know which model year this one is. I always think of these as the perfect car for people who don’t like cars. My friend Elsa owned one twenty years ago when I first met her. She doesn’t care at all about cars. She’s owned two Accords since, and still says her Acclaim was her favorite car. Spotted in downtown Fishers.

1990-2000 BMW 3 seires

199x BMW 3-series. It’s hard to believe that BMW made these for so many years. To me, this is the ultimate 3-series body. I found this on the same day and in the same place as the 1977 Corvette. You can see the Vette’s hood through the BMW’s greenhouse.

1992-95 Pontiac Bonneville

1992-95 Pontiac Bonneville SE. Hard to believe these now qualify as old. Spotted at the Fishers Super Target.

1993-94 Ford Explorer Limited

1993-94 Ford Explorer Limited. Hard to believe given how many of these Ford made, but these early Explorers are quite rare today. Perhaps the Obama-era Cash for Clunkers program did a lot of them in. I found this one at the 38th St. Meijer (big-box store similar to Walmart) in Indianapolis.

1993-95 Chrysler LeBaron GTC

1993-95 Chrysler LeBaron GTC. The LeBaron was once a high-end Chrysler. This compact convertible had nothing to do with the model’s history and should have been named something else. Another find in the Nickel Plate parking lot.

1994-99 Dodge or Plymouth Neon

1994-99 Dodge/Plymouth Neon. I suppose this Neon could be newer than 20 years old, but it’s hard to tell just by looking at it, as Chrysler didn’t change these much over their manufacturing run. Someone sure slathered on the aftermarket trim bits, though. Spotted in the parking lot of my previous employer.

1995-96 Chevrolet Camaro Z28

1995-96 Chevrolet Camaro Z28. Spotted at an Indianapolis Dairy Queen, this Camaro was in mighty fine shape considering how badly these were flogged by their teenaged second, third, and fourth owners.

1995-97 Ford Contour

1995-97 Ford Contour. Another once-common car that’s mighty thin on the ground today, this early Contour was waiting for its owner at the 38th Street Indianapolis Meijer.

There! A whopping 23 cars this year. That’s almost one every two weeks! A remarkable harvest for here in Rustopia.

Old Cars

Carspotting 2016

I take photographs of old parked cars when I come upon them. Normally, I write about them over at Curbside Classic, the old-parked-car blog. But this year I’ve not made time to write over there as much as usual. So for those of you who read both there and here: you’ll see some cars today that I’ll write about over there eventually!

However, the harvest was not ripe this year. Here are the handful of cars at least 20 years old that I found.


1973 Pontiac Grand Ville convertible. Margaret and I capped our wedding weekend with dinner on Main Street in Zionsville. Walking back to our car, we came upon this long, low convertible. It appears to be a survivor — that is, original and unrestored. Just how I like ’em! More on Curbside Classic here.


1975 Continental Mark IV. This was parked at church one Sunday morning. It belongs to one of our neighbors, who we let park in our lot since on-street parking is hard to come by in this neighborhood.


1979 Chevrolet Corvette. Margaret and I found this on 56th St. just off Broadway in New York City. This is the reddest Corvette I’ve ever seen! More on Curbside Classic here.


1984-88 Nissan Maxima. I don’t know a whole lot about these, except that a college buddy’s dad had one. At the time, I didn’t understand why he wouldn’t have spent the same bigger bucks on a Buick. Oh, how naive I was.


1986-90 Dodge Ramcharger. I’ve always thought these looked great. When I wrote about it for Curbside Classic, some commenters decried the skinty tires. As if all trucks need to be jacked up and on giant knobby tires. I think this thing looks just right.


1990 Honda Civic CRX Si. Somebody I work with owns this. I don’t know who, mind you, but it showed up in the lot at work a couple months ago and is there every day. It’s a survivor, and it’s refreshing to see one of these in original condition. I hope this guy keeps it this way forever.


1993-96 Lincoln Mark VIII. I always thought these were good looking. But this one had peeling paint everywhere. A shame. More on Curbside Classic here.


1996 Ford Escort LX Sport. I’m pretty sure Ford offered the trunkback version of this car only this year. My dad had the hatchback version, in this color I’m pretty sure, and it’s the car he owned the longest. That thing was hard to kill.


1997 BMW M3. This car belongs to one of the partners at the company where I work. We went to lunch one day and he let me drive it. I’ve always wanted to drive one of these! We didn’t go far, and I was not about to sink my foot into the floorboards in my big boss’s car, so I didn’t find out what this M3 was made of. But just rowing it through its gears put a smile on my face. And ok, it’s only 19 years old. But it’s my blog and I want to include it!

Old Cars

Carspotting 2015

I take photographs of old parked cars when I come upon them. I write about most of them over at Curbside Classic, the old-parked-car blog. But I know you might not read that blog, so near the end of each year I round up all those cars and share one photo of each here. The only rule: the car has to be at least 20 years old.

1930 Nash c

1930 Nash. Obviously modified during a restoration — just check out those fat modern tires, and I’m sure that grille was originally chromed — it was still great to find this car on Monument Circle early this year. I’ve seen it here a couple other times, with its owner sitting in the driver’s seat. Read more about it here.

1983-88 Toyota truck g

198x Toyota Truck. Despite being hard to kill, these trucks are fairly unusual to find where I live today. I’ve always thought this was the perfect compact truck, and I’d love to have one. Read more about it here.

197x Chevy truck

197x Chevrolet truck. I found this shortbed on a street in South San Francisco while I visited there on business in April. I wrote a short blurb about it here.

198x Toyota Camry

198x Toyota Camry. This battered old soldier was waiting for its owner on Massachusetts Avenue one Friday night in early spring. The nighttime lighting was more challenging than my iPhone could handle, but I had to get a shot anyway, as these old Camrys are few and far between today.

1992-95 BMW 325i a

1992-95 BMW 325i. These used to be everywhere, but when I came upon this one Downtown, I couldn’t remember the last time I’d seen one. And I don’t think I’d ever seen one in green. Read more about it here.

1988 Ford Ranger STX a

1988 Ford Ranger STX. It had been ages since I’d seen a first-generation Ranger, and the one I came upon was top of the line all the way. This was a pretty expensive little truck when it was new. Read more about it here.

1992 Olds Custom Cruiser

1992 Oldsmobile Custom Cruiser. Chevy and Buick got both sedan and wagon versions of the last big B body: the Caprice and the Roadmaster, respectively. But for some reason Olds got just the wagon, and then failed to sell many of them. So it was remarkable to come upon this one as I stopped in tiny Kirklin on the Michigan Road earlier this year. I wrote a short piece about it for Curbside Classic, here.

1991-93 Mercury Cougar a

1991 Mercury Cougar XR7. These have always looked ridiculous to me, with that oversquare rear passenger window and the rear wheel arch set so far back. But they sold by the bazillion, half of them in this very 90s color. See more pictures here.

1988-89 Mercury Grand Marquis b

1988-89 Mercury Grand Marquis. I’ve always had such mixed feelings about these. I respect them as one of the last large rear-wheel-drive American sedans, and I sort of like the square, creased styling. But my Ford Focus has about the same amount of front and rear legroom. These just aren’t that large inside! But I almost bought one last year. Read why here.

1983-84 Chrysler E-Class j

1983-84 Chrysler E-Class. Chrysler tried, and failed, to make a luxurious K car. This was it. It’s hard to believe this one has survived in nearly pristine condition. Read more about it here.

1982-86 Mitsubishi Mighty Max Sport c

1982-86 Mitsubishi Mighty Max. I’ve always liked these little trucks, which were more commonly seen in the United States wearing Dodge badging (as the Ram 50). More pix here.

1990 Jeep Grand Wagoneer b

1990 Jeep Grand Wagoneer. Did you know this SUV was produced for a whopping 28 model years, from 1963 to 1991? But now that they’ve been out of production for almost as many years, they’re becoming rarer. I found this one while meeting a colleague for coffee one morning. Read more about it here.

1976-77 Chevrolet Vega b

1976-77 Chevrolet Vega. The Vega was arguably the best looking of the early-70s domestic compacts (which included the Pinto and the Gremlin). But they were plagued with reliability problems, and most of them met their fate long ago. So it was delightful to come upon this one up in Home Place (a little neighborhood sandwiched between Indianapolis and Carmel) over the summer. Read about it here.

1992-98 BMW 3 series coupe b

1992-98 BMW 3-series coupe. This was the car I lusted after when I was in my 20s. If there had been a for-sale sign in the window of this one, I might have been a goner. Over at Curbside Classic, I used this car to ask the question: what is your favorite BMW? Read it here.

1968-75 BMW 2002 b

1968-75 BMW 2002. I bought a lot of topsoil for a landscaping project, bringing home ten or so bags at a time in the back of my hatchback. I probably should have had a few yards delivered by truck. But then I would have missed this 2002 parked at a nearby Home Depot. More pics here.

1995 Mercury Sable a

1995 Mercury Sable. Time was, these roamed the Earth in vast numbers. But the herd has thinned, to the point where seeing one at all is remarkable. What’s even more remarkable is that this one looks barely used.

1970 Ford F250 b

1970 Ford F-250. I visited my alma mater for Homecoming in October. I like to see what the kids are driving, because sometimes a gem lurks among the hand-me-down cars so typical of the college set. I was surprised to find that a student from Montana drove this truck to Terre Haute — a drive on the order of 24 hours, in a vehicle that could best be described as punishing to drive. See more photos here.

1967 Pontiac Bonneville b

1967 Pontiac Bonneville. The last old parked car I found this year is one of my most satisfying finds ever. I love the 1967 and 1968 General Motors B-body hardtop coupes — so large, so audacious. This one was parked on US 40 in Cambridge City. The full story is here.

Old Cars

Carspotting 2014

Whenever I see an old car parked, I photograph it. It’s become tradition at Down the Road to share the annual crop with you as the year wraps up. I’ve adjusted that tradition this year: the bar for inclusion was lowered from 25 to 20 years. I’ve shared many of these cars with the audience at Curbside Classic and have linked to those stories where they exist.


1991 Chevrolet Lumina APV. My nearby Meijer attracts old cars like my porch light attracts moths. These were weird minivans even in their day. Those that survive generally look pretty good thanks to plastic side panels. More on Curbside Classic here.


1991 Dodge Shadow ES. In 1991, as now, cheap cars tended to get used up and then discarded, especially due to the minimal maintenance provided by their second, third or fourth owners. Which makes it truly remarkable that this Dodge Shadow ES made it to 2014 with just a couple of bumper scuffs and a tiny bit of rust on the left rear fender. Read about it at Curbside Classic here.


1979 Pontiac Grand Prix. This pristine Pontiac waited illicitly in a handicapped space next to Kroger. More on Curbside Classic here.


1990 Ford Taurus wagon. I remember the first time I saw one of these — it stopped me dead in my tracks, so good looking it was. Before, wagons were stolid and boring, slathered in fake woodgrain. More on Curbside Classic here.


1989 Nissan Hardbody. Several of these trucks still roll near my home, but none looking like they just drove out of the showroom like this one. More on Curbside Classic here.


1990 Cadillac Allante. Spotted on Main Street up in Zionsville, this Allante was for sale. More on Curbside Classic here.

1985-89 Plymouth Reliant b

1985-89 Plymouth Reliant. I’ve never so much as ridden in one of these, which is remarkable given their 1980s ubiquity. A brief meditation on Curbside Classic here.

1991 Buick Regal Custom Edition d

1991 Buick Regal Classic Edition. My eyes, my eyes! Such ugly junk tacked onto this flaccid Buick’s roof. More on Curbside Classic here.

1963 Ford Galaxie a

1963 Ford Galaxie. This photo is sort of cheating: this car has been parked here for at least 20 years. It fronts a restaurant in Danville themed for The Andy Griffith Show. More on Curbside Classic here.

1991 Toyota Corolla b

1991 Toyota Corolla. This car looks just like one my stepson bought as his first car. What a hunk of junk it was! Read its story on Curbside Classic here.

1987 Ford LTD Crown Victoria h

1985 Ford LTD Crown Victoria. Found at a different Meijer from the one I normally visit, this Crown Vic is tricked out inside with Hello Kitty gear. See it at Curbside Classic here.

1964 Ford F100 d

1964 Ford F-100. If you’re younger than 30, this truck looks quaint; if you’re older than 40, you’re probably thinking, “now that’s truck.” Spotted in infield parking at the Indiana State Fair. More at Curbside Classic here

1992 Saab 900 Turbo d

1992 Saab 900 Turbo convertible. Another State Fair find that I haven’t written about yet for Curbside Classic.

1940 Buick Special a

1940 Buick Special. My sons and I came upon this old Buick on State Road 135 in Bean Blossom, Indiana. It looks great at 20 feet, but when you get up close you see its imperfections. But I’m happy that it survived at all. More on Curbside Classic here.

1973-80 MB 450 SL c

1973-80 Mercedes-Benz 450 SL convertible. I spotted this one in the parking lot of a Ruth’s Chris Steak House, where I was late to meet my brother for dinner. More on Curbside Classic here.

1977 Chevrolet C10 c

1977 Chevrolet C-10. My friend Dawn and I spotted this truck in Roann, Indiana, while we were there to check out the town’s covered bridge. More on Curbside Classic here.

1978 Ford F-250 Explorer d

1978 Ford F-250 Explorer. I found a lot of trucks this year! You might know the Explorer name from Ford’s flagship SUV, but before that, Explorer was a trim level on Ford’s trucks.

1977-85 MB 300D f

1977-85 Mercedes-Benz 300 Diesel. I found this Mercedes on campus at Rose-Hulman when I visited there in late October.

66-71 Jeepster Commando

1966-67 Jeep Jeepster Commando. One of the many times this year my Ford has been in the shop, I spotted this old Jeepster out front. I’ve seen a couple of these in shows and auctions, but never an unrestored original still rolling. It was a frigid November day — not soft-top Jeepster weather. This Jeepster’s lack of side reflectors peg it to 1966 or 1967 — 1966 was this truck’s first year, but the Feds mandated side reflectors for 1968 and beyond. More on Curbside Classic here.

More cars spotted: 2013, 2012, 2011.