William W 1966 Mercury Comet Caliente 2dr Hardtop Coupe

Big Red Lemon

This was my dad's 2nd new car in his life, it was his 2nd Ford product, the first was a 64 Ford Falcon. They wanted a Falcon convertible, but in 66, but it was not made. So they looked at Fairlanes, and did not like the looks, So we looked at the Comet. it was 4 inches longer, and looked beautiful. My mom never liked red, black or white cars, but when we drove up to Airway Lincoln Mercury in Springfield ,OH, and she saw that red Comet convertible with the white top and white stripe, she said that car! I remember going on the test ride in the back seat. I remember him saying to not slow down at the RR tracks to show how smooth it rode. It had the 289 Merc-O-matic trans . My parents were sold on it. We took it home, and the fun began! The radio was staticy, it ran rough, the trans leaked, ( and still does) the trim was falling off, there was goop seeping out of the windshield. The dealer could not get anything right either. some of the bracing in the trunk was not welded.The final straw was that the trunk lid was crooked. It overlapped on the left bottom corner and the right upper corner. And the dealer refused to fix it ! Well my dad and the dealer got into a heated argument and he threw dad out and said not to bring it back for any further service! Until dad wrote a 7 page letter to Ford over that car! The dealer almost their franchise over that car, and begged him to bring it back. They fixed it! But it still continued to be a lemon. I Had my first date to the Jr. Prom with my (now) wife in that car. It blew up at 60,000 miles, the tranny went out, we never got much heat out of the passenger side in the winter. My mom wrecked it, my dad dinged it, and I wiped out the front end on graduation day. My dad and I restored it a year later in 1974, when I found a whole front end in Xenia, OH right after the big tornado. We restored it, and I completely restored it again after my dad died in 1989. It took 5 years to completely rebuild the whole car, engine, and that stupid transmission ( it still leaks). Instead of restoring it, I restored it my way. Lots of chrome , a 4barrel, headers, shift kit, nice looking Supreme Classic wheels, high lift springs in the rear. Repainted Ford's Candy apple red. Cyclone fiberglass hood. And it still sits in my garage, to be driven on nice days, to shows, and cruise-ins with 140,000 miles on it. I even took my drivers test in that car! We have now had it for 48 years this month. Now tell me,how long have you had your car?

1 Reader Comment

  • 1
    W. WIlliams MImisburg July 11, 2014 at 08:58
    I picked 1966 Comet Caliente Convertible for my story, and it posted 2dr hardtop coupe!

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