• Back at the office or school? Still working from home? Need to vent, or just connect with other planner and built environment types? Come join us!

    Cyburbia is a friendly big tent, where we share our experiences and thoughts about urban planning practice, planning adjacent topics, and whatever else comes to mind. No ads, no spam, no social distancing or masks required.

The family car growing up

Bear Up North

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
9,323
Points
31
When this Bear was about four (4) years old, my dad had a 1948 or 1949 Oldsmobile. He rolled it, with us kids in the back seat. Didn't seem to cause any brain damage or anythscseiwpeklf sdlkeww skjtyty;

We always seemed to have a Rocket 88 Olds in the driveway, at least until the early 1960's. Then, Ford Station Wagon time.

Bear
 

JNA

Cyburbian Plus
Messages
26,673
Points
70
Had an Oldsmobile Custom Crusier Stationwagon - 3 rows of seats, retracting tail gate and window.

Learned to parallel park in it :-o , never did master backing a boat trailer.:-@
 

Follow the $$

Cyburbian
Messages
126
Points
6
I grew up in a VW beetle as the only family vehicle until I was about 10 years old. With a family of four, my brother and I always sat in the back seat and if either of us were "bad" we got punished by having to sit in the "luggage compartment", the little trough in the back. This was really horrible punishment both because it was humiliating and because the carpet used to line the compartment was extremely scratchy.
 

jsk1983

Cyburbian
Messages
2,531
Points
25
My parents had a Plymouth Reliant wagon as the family car up until the early 90s and then it was a Chevy Celebrity Wagon for about ten years, which had to have been one of the most uncomfortable cars I've ever been in. I also seem to have several memories of the car breaking down one time being on an expressway in Washington DC during rush hour.
 

Runner

Cyburbian
Messages
566
Points
17
We always had a Volkswagen while I was growing up. First it was a bug then a 1963 (white/grey) bus, 1968 (yellow) bus, and 1973 (white/red) bus. I may have the year models off a little.
Road-tour-bus.jpg

The white/red bus was the one I learned to drive in and was similar to the one pictured above.
 

Lee Nellis

Cyburbian
Messages
1,369
Points
29
I can't remember the order: there was a yellow Pontiac with fins and there was a Rambler (haven't heard one of those mentioned). The car I learned to drive was a Dodge Coronet. My first car was a 1952 Chevy pick-up I bought from my grandad for $52. No key, starter was a push "button" on the floor. I wish I had kept it and restored it, but by the time I started driving in the late '60's it was already an old truck.
 

boiker

Cyburbian
Messages
3,887
Points
26
I remember my parents having an 1982 Firenza hatchback
then a '88 delta 88
then a '93 grand prix

all these cars with 3 boys in the backseat.
 

zman

Cyburbian
Messages
9,244
Points
33
My folks had BMWs before I was born, then decided to go to Volkswagens. (I must have been expensive!;-) )

Mom had an '82 VW Jetta Diesel (which would seize up in weather that was below zero...:-@ ) and my pops had a '78 VW Rabbit (which actualy lasted a long time).
Then we got the new Volvo 240GL in 1986, which became my car when I larned to drive in the late 90s. (It wasn't great at picking up girls, but their Mom's liked the car as it was safe for their daughters to ride in:cool: )
 

mileage2762004

Cyburbian
Messages
150
Points
7
First one I can remember was a gray 1950 Plymouth 4-door. My sis and I spent many long hours in the back seat on camping trips to upstate NY (Fish Creek pond State Camp ground). The breast would pull box trailer with the family camping gear in it. Nothing modern, a canvas tent and tarp, camp beds with springs and a thin mattress, old colman stove and lantern (but did most of the cooking on a campfire), 3 1/2 hp outboard motor (rented a boat at the campground).

The only thing I can really remember was we all had a WONDERFUL time. Anyone have similar memories?
 

DetroitPlanner

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
6,238
Points
27
Parents cars in order of what when I remember them buying them (we had several used cars):

mid 60's Buick Skylark
1972 Pontiac Catalina Coupe
1977 Chevy Impala Wagon
1965 Ford Mustang
1981 Plymouth Horizon 2.2 (this car got so much abuse from us because of its light weight and relatively fast engine).
1982 Pontiac Grand Prix
1988 Pontiac Bonneville
1982 Chrysler New Yorker Fifth Ave
1994 Pontiac Bonneville SSEi
2000 Ford Exploder

My Cars:
1977 Plymouth Grand Fury
1979 Chrysler New Yorker Fifth Ave (tri tone creme paint)
1989 Plymouth Shadow (best car I ever owned, though stolen three times)
1991 Ford Taurus GL (my first foriegn car, built in Chicago! :) )
1999 Ford Taurus SE
 
Last edited:

noj

Cyburbian
Messages
516
Points
16
This will mean very little to most of you, but I thought I'd list them as an antidote to all the Pontiacs/Chryslers/Station Wagons;)

The first car I remember my Dad having was a Austin Maxi. This was followed by a Austin Princess, then an Austin Montego :)v: ) , and then a Vauxhall Cavalier. He now has a Renault Megane.

My mum used to have a Austin Mini (Clubman - fantastic) then a Datsun Stanza. Classy.
 

Dan

Dear Leader
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
19,337
Points
71
I grew up working class, so most family cars that my folks had were used. Dad got new company cars every couple of years and could use them for personal use, but they were usually filled with "stock" and we didn't use them much. Let's see if I can remember the non-company cars:

* 1961 American Motors Rambler
* 1968 Ford Galaxy
* 1978 Chevrolet Impala (the classic "Box Chevy" now very desired by the bling-bling car modding crowd)
* 1987 Ford Escort (purchased new)

After I left home, the 'rents bought their first new, mid-sized car - a 1992 Mercury Sable, loaded and equipped with a cell phone. They still have it -- they don't make long drives, so it's in pretty good condition -- and the ancient analog car phone still works. They bought a second car after Dad retired -- an off-lease '95 Ford Taurus -- but they sold it a few years ago. They're now a proud one-car family.

Mom wants to get a new Toyota Camry in the next couple of years or so. It would be their first venture into foreign cars.
 

Jaxspra

Cyburbian
Messages
3,514
Points
24
I am not sure of the years but I do remember a few of the cars :

A station wagon that we drove from St. Louis to California...had rear seats that faced the "wrong way", my brother and I loved that car
A small, old Pinto, don't remember that one too well
A Buick Regal that my mom LOVED
A huge blue monster truck
A Jeep Wrangler
An older Porshe
A few El Caminos (I leardned how to drive in one of these beasts!)
A Cadillac
Now finally they got new cars (gotten rid of the kids ;-) ) and drive a Grand Cherokee and Infinity SUV of some sort....

My dad loved cars and trucks and traded his in regularly for different ones (never new), I also have had a ton of cars: 84 Mustang, Fiero, Mazda 323, Audi 4000, Honda Accord, Toyota Tercel, Toyota Camry, and now a Jeep Cherokee...thinking pretty seriously about getting a Jeep Wrangler...thinkt he boys would LOVE it and know mom will :-D
 

Richmond Jake

You can't fight in here. This is the War Room!
Messages
18,300
Points
44
The first car I can recall is mom and dad's two-tone 1959 Ford stationwagon. It had tail fins if I remember correctly. Dad also had a red 1960 Studebaker pickup in which I learned to drive. Six cylinder with three on the tree. A beast.
 

Super Amputee Cat

Cyburbian
Messages
2,502
Points
35
Here's an ad I found for the LTD Country Squire Wagon, once one of the most ubiquitous cars on the road and seemingly the most common car of parents of Cyburbian planners.

1972_Ford.jpg
 

Planit

Cyburbian
Messages
14,255
Points
57
SAC - that reminds me of our families station wagons:

196? Mercury Station Wagon - maroon red and somebody plowed into the rear.
1971 Mercury Grand Marquis Station Wagon - light metallic green and kept that thing until the early eighties. Many trips in the land battleship and I learned to parallel park in that thing and then took the test in a Toyota (easy way to pass the test).
Both had the simulated wood paneling on the sides - you don't see that anymore...:-| .
 

Maister

Chairman of the bored
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
30,148
Points
74
My ol' man used to always buy Buick Electra 225's. Of course, he worked at the Buick plant at the time....
 

DetroitPlanner

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
6,238
Points
27
Maister said:
My ol' man used to always buy Buick Electra 225's. Of course, he worked at the Buick plant at the time....


Maister, you're a Flint-boy? My Uncle had a 1963 Electra 225 in near perfect condition when he bought is Plymouth Reliant. I seem to remember the car having a 440 inch engine with a 4-barrel carb. At the time, my parents had 3 teens and were offered the car. I was about 14 and would spend my time polishing it and waxing it. My brother? He would drive the thing as fast as humanly possible, and dance on it in golf spikes.

P.S. The Buick City sign signalled 1/2 way to the family farm/cottage on the Saginaw Bay outside of Pinny.
 

DetroitPlanner

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
6,238
Points
27
Maister said:
Well, Flushing originally, but yeah.


Hmm.. my Grandpa was friends with the Monsignier from the Flushing Catholic Church back in the 20's-50's. They went to Catholic University of America together and were both Flint natives. My mom would spend weekends up there with grandpa. The Monsignier was french and served food the french way. It wasn't until I was a senior in high school that I realized salads were to be served before the meal, not as dessert!
 
Top