1976 Ford Elite: Ford’s Monte Carlo

Every decade seemingly has its own personal fad. Most recently (and seemingly entering its second decade in the ’20s) it was the combover. Oops, I mean crossover, heh. Before that it was the SUV and before that it was the minivan. But the gotta have it vehicle type in the 1970s was most definitely the personal luxury car.

To wit: A two door coupe or two door hardtop with a long hood, short deck, gigantic doors, and likely sporting a stand-up hood ornament, opera windows, opera lamps, a landau top and wire wheel covers.

This type of very American Motor Vehicle got started in the late 50s with the four-seat 1958 to 1960 Ford Thunderbird. It was followed in roughly chronological order by the 1961 Oldsmobile Starfire, 1962 Pontiac Grand Prix, pricier and more exclusive 1963 Buick Riviera, 1966 Oldsmobile Toronado (with front-wheel drive, wowie zowie!), the 1967 Cadillac Eldorado and the 1969 Lincoln Continental Mark III.

Continue Reading →

1976 Oldsmobile Ninety-Eight Regency Coupe: Chris-Craft on Wheels

You all well know my fondness for those velour-clad, opera-lamped, gas-guzzling and totally impractical, totally awesome ’70s Detroit cruisers. So it will surprise exactly no one that I went gaga upon seeing this light metallic blue Olds coupe this beautiful, sunny Thursday afternoon, whilst sitting on my deck and working on gin and tonic #2.

Yes, ’76 was last call for the unapologetically huge big GM C-bodies: Cadillac de Ville, Buick Electra and the majestic Olds Ninety-Eight.

Continue Reading →

Mini Longroof: 1976 Grand LeMans Safari by Greenlight

One of the things that has gotten me excited the past few years is how many of the current diecast model companies have been releasing makes and models I never, ever expected to be produced in scale. Cars from the ’70s and ’80s that weren’t Camaros, Mustangs and Corvettes. Cars I remember from my childhood and various and sundry ’80s TV shows watched in my formative years.

Case in point. Greenlight has recently released the Colonnade Pontiac LeMans wagon in several different versions. They’ve even released a wagon version of Buford T. Justice’s Montague County, TX LeMans. Yes, really, I saw one at Hobby Lobby last week.

Continue Reading →

1976 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham d’Elegance: Be Still, My Heart!

Well, you know the drill. I love these 1971-1976 Cadillacs, particularly Fleetwood Broughams, Fleeetwood d’Elegances, and Fleetwood Talismans. Sure you do. I’ve written up no less than three of them, here, here and here. So I’ll dispense with the background information and history on these.

Continue Reading →

1976 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme: King of the Coupes

Today, the most popular new cars tend towards silver silvermist combover anonymity. Because, as you know, it is much better to have a car that does 17 things crappily rather than one that does one thing very well. But I digress. Things change. It’s a given, especially in the fickle car market. But approximately 45 years ago, the top selling cars in the land of the free were actually attractive. Due to having several in my family when I was a kid, I especially long for the 1976-77 Cutlass Supreme; in all likelihood, so do a number of people, as they set sales records in the ’70s and early ’80s. Luckily, I spotted a primo example at the Oldsmobile Nationals in Brookfield, Wisconsin back in 2015.

1976 Oldsmobile Mid-size and Compact-02-03

We’ve all heard the Colonnade story: In 1973, GM unveiled the new A-bodies. They were new and modern, but were festooned with the first 5-mph safety bumpers. And in certain quarters, draw a serious amount of ire from Monday morning quarterbacks. But at any rate, sporty muscle coupes were on the way out, with the world of Brougham taking over. The Cutlass coupes, in various S, Salon and Supreme forms, did quite well.

But in my opinion, they hit their stride in 1976, when an attractive new face and sheetmetal greeted visitors to Olds showrooms. The smooth sides (sedans and wagons retained the 73-75 fender blisters), quad rectangular lights and waterfall grille all looked great. It was a clean, attractive restyle, what one would call a near-luxury car today. For the up-and-coming young professional to announce his moving up in the world.

Continue Reading →

1976 Cadillac Sedan de Ville: Firethorn Fantasy

Okay, you know the drill. I like Broughams. I like Nimitz-class 1970s yachts. I like poofy seats, vibrant colors and power everything. And I like Cadillacs. The bigger, the better, as far as I’m concerned.

I’ve written enough about these over the past year that I think we can forgo my usual spiel. Want more?

Then go here,

here…

…and here.

Continue Reading →

Glasshouse For Sale: 1976 Chevrolet Impala Landau

I’ve been kind of blowing up RG with Broughams lately. “Klockau, geez man, ANOTHER ’70s tuna boat. Fercryinout loud!” Whoops. But hey, it’s not intentional. I just keep seeing vintage land yachts out and about, and have to immediately write it up. It’s an incurable issue with me. I love pretty much all classic and vintage cars, but it seems I always gravitate back to Broughamville. Caprice Classics, Fleetwood Talismans, Bonneville Broughams, 98 Regencys. I can’t help it, man!

1976 Impala Landau

So now that that’s out of the way, here’s another one. A 1976 Chevrolet Impala Landau coupe, espied by yours truly on one of the FB groups I’m on, Finding Future Classic Cars. A rare birdie. In 1976, Landau was king. And Chevrolet offered both Caprice Classic and Impala Landau trim packages, consisting of the aforementioned Landau vinyl roof in elk-grain vinyl, color-keyed wheel discs, sport mirrors and custom pinstriping.

1976 Caprice Landau, formerly owned by Jason Bagge.

Of the two full-size B-Body Landaus, the Caprice Classic was the clear sales winner, with 21,926 of the $5,284 coupes sold.

Continue Reading →

1976 Cadillac Fleetwood Talisman: The Broughamiest Brougham That Ever Broughamed

Ever had a post you meant to write up, and it keeps getting displaced by other subjects? Happens to me all the time. There was one in particular I wrote for the old site, where I really, truly meant to write it up the very same weekend that I photographed it. But then other car shows intervened, more and more photos were taken, and further bright, shiny rolling stock distracted your author. That car finally was written up, approximately a year and a half later. But, it DID get written! And so shall today’s subject, perhaps the Broughamiest Brougham that ever Broughamed. The 1974-76 Cadillac Fleetwood Talisman. Today’s subject is a ’76 in Georgian Silver with matching top and Light Antique Blue velour interior. Maximum Cadillac. Maximum Brougham. Maximum Awesome!

Continue Reading →