Muscle Car

Sweet Nova Time

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By Mark Weisseg

Years ago I managed a group of guys in the automotive business. One of my employees now known as associates had a little Chevy Nova like this one above. The difference was he had the Chevy stock rally wheels, an automatic transmission, a AM radio, bench seats and under the hood a monster straight six cylinder. Oh the horror!

You see he inherited the car from an Uncle and he loved the car. It was even in the 80’s a spot on beautiful car. Flawless is the word that comes to my mind. Funny,we never thought at the time to lower it, slap on 20 inch wheels, and drop a monster 396 crate engine in it. You see the car was special as it was and he knew if he changed it he could never go back. I understood this as I have many original cars and remind myself they are only that way once. So, as tempting as it is to modify the car into something wild and crazy one must fight these demons at times and leave it alone.

Today, twenty five plus years later this friend still has his Nova and yes it is still original. He has a young son now and I would imagine he is schooling him to keep the car in the family and in its originality. Not every classic needs to be retro moded, chopped, channeled, tubbed, shaved, lowered, with a crate engine and a sonic boom stereo system. No, when I hit the shows I like to see a original Falcon, a Nova, or a Mercury Comet. It reminds me of simpler times when a guy could drive his car to a show and home again without worry of rain, a dust storm or the possibility of following a loaded garbage truck. Today I know guys that if there is rain on radar within 500 miles they will not pull the ride out. Because we all know it might melt. Or the guy at the show that hears a rumble of thunder and panics, folds up shop, and races home in terror for fear the liquid sunshine might touch the car.

Relax, I don’t like getting some of my cars wet with rain either but I don’t go into panic mode if it does. More power to the guys and gals who live and drive the classics and do not modify them to the point where it is hard to tell what is real and what is cloned. Horsepower is not everything but it sure makes it more fun at times. Lastly, at a show this past year I stumbled upon a Chrysler Imperial from the early 60’s. I stared at the dash for what seems like hours because it was a work of art. Chrome buttons, levers that slid, push button drive, an oblong steering wheel and the coolest gauge package I have ever seen. So, remember the classics are not about flowmaster, K&N filters, and other such gizmos. Stop, and look at the real classics that are untouched and you will remember how and why you fell in love in the first place.

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