Tom F 1967 Dodge Polara 2dr Hardtop Coupe

67 Dodge Polara Love Story

I can paste the story in but if you would rather sit back, relax and watch, I have a link to a video I made of that story first:

http://youtu.be/xsQ-6kdDwEM

OK, here's the text:

My love affair with my 67 Dodge Polara began as many relationships do, almost by accident.

It was unexpected.

I was 15 years old and had a summer job and some money.

I wanted my own car by the time I turned 16 and so, I had been looking.

The year was 1972 and the $500 I had managed to save would get me a used car about 7 years old. And I was entirely open to which car I wanted because I really did like all the cars from the 60’s and so, I enjoyed the search and the opportunity to closely inspect a variety of models.

A 66 Buick Skylark Convertible caught my eye, but I lived in Pittsburgh and while it had fresh paint, I found that it was covering a lot of rust underneath.

I lusted after the elegant beauty and luxury of the 64 Lincoln Continental, but I couldn’t get one for $500. I didn't even know what a muscle car was, I was looking more for something that I could see my father driving.

After I exhausted all my preconceived notions without ever even considering a Dodge or Chrysler I happened, somehow, to look on a local dealers used car lot and there it was. The 67 Polara Coupe fastback caught my eye. The bold grill and bow tie tail lamps were distinctive. The interior was generous and ample and while basic, had a touch of luxury that I appreciated. It was spacious and comfortable, but not pretentious by the standards of the time. And I liked the Light Blue Metallic Paint.

My initial attraction, I will have to admit, was superficial. I liked the way it looked.

I really knew very little about cars, or engines and I wasn't motivated by the rumble of a powerful V8. Even though those were common because gas was cheap and so even mid-sized cars were huge and usually came with a V8 power plant. But I just wanted to drive…and I wanted to drive anywhere and everywhere!

This Dodge Polara had the hood up, and even I could see that there was a lot of what should be there...missing.

I could seeing the shiny gaping interior of the big block V8 cylinders. I asked what was wrong and was told the engine needed a rebuild.

Now I can't imagine a used car dealer volunteering that information today. Especially to a dumb kid with $500 burning a hole in his pocket. But, back in the day (here we go) I think there was more honor in business. At least, that's my experience. This dealer didn't want a car to leave his lot that wasn't "right". It was his reputation, and he regarded that more than my easy cash.

So he told me flat out that, if I wanted this car, I would have to wait about 2 weeks.

Well, I wanted it.

The price was $700 but we soon reached a deal for the $500 and I gave him the money and my phone number right there, on the spot (never signed anything and didn't even get a receipt) knowing that he would call me when it was ready.

And that was that, or so I thought.

Now pay attention; in retrospect I now remember that it was my Mother that suggested I look at that particular Dealer's lot. These are dots I had not yet connected.

You see, in two weeks, I would be 16. I would already have my driver’s license because I had been hounding my Dad for months and he agreed to take me for my Driver’s at the first possible moment after my Birthday.

My mother worked a day job, my Dad, worked nights. They couldn't always keep a close eye on their 5 kids but you know, they somehow managed.

My Mom didn't want me wasting my money on a piece of junk. And she didn't want me having a car, by any means, before I was 16 and had a license. In fact, the more I thought about it, I was “encouraged” to wander to the used car garage and "find" that Polara by the salesman on the lot that day.

I now realist that my mother was probably out in front of the play.

In fact, 2 weeks later, after my birthday and after I had my license, when the car was ready, it was my mother who somehow ended up with the keys.

And she laid-down the law. It wasn't even coming home until I had insurance for it.

Oh, my Mom loved me.

The cost of the insurance was about $125… to insure it, and me and those who may be adversely affected by me driving it. And that wasn’t the monthly payment, that $125 was for insurance for the year.

I knew very little about it the car, but I fell in love fast.

The fastback body style was sporty enough to suit me and the full-size interior was more than adequate carrying a bunch of friends.

And I have to say it was also very comfortable and easy to drive. The square shape and the hint of fins on the rear fenders, that had not yet evolved away, made it easy to see all 4 corners and, so, it was easy to drive and park.

My Father had a full-sized 1970 Chevrolet with a 350 V8 and this was every bit as responsive (if not more) than his car.

I actually liked the interior and exterior lines of my Polara more than his "new" car.

And I did drive it everywhere. In the sun, rain or snow, the mountains or the turnpike.

On the way to school I would pick-up every one I say hitch-hiking on the way. (Remember those days, hitch-hiking to high school?)

And it’s a good thing there was room for a lot of friends because, if everyone gave me a quarter for gas, I soon had enough (at 32¢ a gallon) to keep my tank gassed-up.

My Dad changed the oil in his new car every 3,000 miles, like clock-work. And if I would do it for him, I could use his old oil in my car. Worked for me. And that old Dodge didn’t seem to mind.

When I did sell the car (2 years later) I actually sold it for a profit at $800. That was the first and last car that didn’t cost me and instead, turned a profit.

This is when I had to consider the possibility that my Mother may have secretly arranged subsidized my initial purchase.

But this was something she never would admit to.

And I don't think I ever thought about that car much after I sold it.

But, in 2004, while searching the internet for an image of a "Polaris" Missile on Google, one of the images that came up was a light blue metallic 67 Dodge Polara Coupe.

I clicked on the image and was re-directed to an Ebay Auction page.

There were more images there, interior, exterior and pics under the hood. It brought back a flood of memories and I realized that I loved that car more than I ever knew.

No other vehicle that I had owned since, had meant as much to me.

But it had been over 30 years, I was a grown man and well, I didn't have time for such things. So, I just enjoyed the photographs and memories a bit and I called my wife over to the computer to show her. But she doesn't care about cars and she said, "What's that!" I told her that it was the very first car I had ever owned. As she was walking away she mumbled, “it’s big”. And we never spoke about it again.

But, about a week later she asked me, "You remember that car you showed me on Ebay?" Yes. "Well, I bid on it and I won. Got your car back!" She smiled and so did I.

Then I asked…wasn't that car in Seattle? (We lived on the East Coast at the time.)

So, we made the purchase, ($3200 I think) and flew to Seattle and drove it back, in October, across I-90 to Madison, then down to Chicago and across I-80 to NY. And we had a ball.

My wife loves me.

Yes Jay, I bought the car on eBay sight unseen and it was even BETTER than expected. So there’s one for the books.

I've driven that car ever since, anywhere and everywhere From NYC to Central Texas (my wife's family home) and back, several times, and NY to LA. It has always been a "driver" and a "driving restoration" project for me.

It had less than 100K original miles on it when I got it, and now it has over 337,000 miles and going.

Over time I’ve replaced everything that needed replaced with NOS as much as possible. But unlike today, many of the components of older cars can be rebuilt, rather than replaced so, it is very much still all original.

I try to keep it as close to stock as possible. Aside from the electronic ignition and the radial tires, it matches the build sheet and the original sticker (which I have).

It is on its 3rd rebuild of the original 383 Big Block now, 60 over, and still going strong. In fact, stronger than ever.

My Polara has always been popular with the crowds at car shows and cruise-ins because it is unusual sight, it’s original and, I believe, because it is a driver. People just like that; it’s not a pampered trailer queen, it’s out there every day slugging it out with everyone else.

It has won numerous First Place Trophies for MoPar C-Body Stock entries, from coast to coast. Most notable among those are, Carlisle in the East, Las Vegas and Spring Fling in LA.

In fact, after winning 2nd Place at MoPars on the Strip, my Polara was invited to be put on display at the Cannery Casino and Hotel Concourse, along with $100K SuperBirds and Chargers, Roadrunners and 'Cudas.

I cannot continue because I am out of space (limited to 10,000 characters) I can send you the rest later if you want it.

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