Excessive Or Distinctive? 1961 Plymouth Valiant

v1

No one could ever accuse Virgil Exner (lead stylist for Chrysler at the time this car was designed) of being conservative! My tiny model of a Valiant that I had as a child was the most distinctive car I had, and this full-size 1961 two-door one is no exception! It’s located in Sacramento, California and is for sale here on eBay, with the buy-it-now price including free shipping (within the lower 48 states).

v2

The distinctive design features weren’t limited to the fenders, with the trunk-mounted tire outline catching your eye from this angle. The paint on this car is said to be original, and while it is looking somewhat faded on the horizontal surfaces, it’s in good enough shape that I would wax it and leave it alone. The seller says the only rust was a small hole in the floor and implies that it’s been repaired.

v3

You can see issues with both bumpers in the way of dents, although a good rechroming shop could straighten them and make them look like new. The glass also looks good, and I can even deal with the whitewalls, which are new, although I wish they were a little narrower. I believe the wheel covers to be original, and if they are that means this car is on 13″ wheels.

collage

The interior has some of the worst seat covers I’ve ever seen loosely draped over the seats. The seller pulled one up and took a picture to show the damaged original upholstery; I think I’d try to find something close and re-upholster the seats. On the other hand, isn’t the shifter curving up over that seat cool? It doesn’t look exactly like the stock ones I could find in images online, but it may just be shifted backwards or bent slightly.

v6

The Valiant was one of the first homes of the famous slant 6 engine, and this one looks right at home under the hood. I’m always struck by how simple the underhood installation looks in a car like this. Go ahead and imagine what it would look like after an afternoon of detailing; I think you’d get a lot of looks at the next cars and coffee you drove it to. The out-of-focus rust visible on the edge of the hood is somewhat troubling, though. I’m not sure this car is for me, especially at the current buy-it-now price, but what about you? Let us know in the comment section!

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Comments

  1. packrat

    My mom had a 1960 in a very light seafoam green. This brings back memories.

    Like 1
  2. Jose

    Way over priced.

    Like 1
    • dave

      Very good price. What can you buy for 6000? ready to drive?
      FREE shipping that could run 2000.

  3. Scotty G

    Original paint?! I was going to call car-flipper on this one, it looks like it’s been given a quick once-over a few years ago. I must be wrong (again).
    I love these things, unusual = cool to me.

    • Jason Houston

      Pricewise, a hotrodded Valiant is never going to survive a nice original Valiant!

  4. Steve

    There’s a red one that runs around my local car show circuit that has been somewhat hot rodded but he kept the slant in her.

    I think the red one might warrant that kinda price but this one has a “Keep it now” price.

    • dave

      Then show us a better deal in this year range. We will be waiting.

  5. Jason Houston

    THAT is the prettiest Valiant I have ever seen since 1961. Six grand is a bargain!

    • George

      But it’s listed at $8K.

  6. rusty

    Cool cars even here in Australia
    and prized here. They were our Chrysler product up against Holden and Ford. What was called the big 3 .We may have had different trims but basically the same.

    • rusty

      Oh even more interesting a 2 door

      I don’t think we got them as 2 doors as we were a country of only 4 doors back then. They’d go nuts for a 2 door here I reckon.

  7. Vince

    Nice but 2. 2 Much… Slant 6’s.

    • dave

      Back up your comment
      Or just an opinion?

  8. Rex Kahrs Member

    Despite all the superlatives, this isn’t the best looking of the Valiant/Darts in my opinion. I like the 63-66 series better. And why on Earth would the seller omit a picture of the dash and steering wheel?

    Like 2
  9. DENIS

    I had one for a company car..I hated it so bad, I changed jobs…lol

  10. junkman Member

    I got my grand ma’s white 4dr 199ci slant 6, 3 spd on the floor with 4500 original miles in 1975 after my cousin Roger wailed a curb and bent the K frame. What a blast of a car, front end was so bad it would eat a set of front tires in about 3000mi. We bolted a toilet seat onto the spare wheel on the trunk and named it “Irma the Toilet” sold to a friend who beat it for a few months then junked it. Those were the days!

  11. recar

    My dad bought one new in 1961- 2-dr hardtop with push-button automatic. To me, that is the only one worth collecting.

  12. Rancho Bella

    This meets the way cool factor in my book. But, for crying out loud…….clean the engine bay if you are asking top buck.

    Don’t be so lazy

  13. Rex Kahrs Member

    I’ve probably told the story of a high school chum who drove his Grandma’s 68 Valiant in the mid-70s. After a few years he decided to buy a sexier car. The plan was to drain all the oil out of the slant 6 (just for fun), and drive it until it blew up. After 3 days the car was still running fine, so he put 4 quarts of oil back in it and sold it for $300!

  14. piper62j

    Nice one.. I’m skeptical of the “original paint”, but other than that, you can drive this one and tinker with it to get it up to par.. I agree,, just a bit overpriced, but what else would you expect from California.. Not putting the state down, but seems things are double and triple in cost compared to everywhere else.. IMHO

    Great car and great find..

    • dave

      I have sold dozens of cars from here in CA. Our cars are higher because they are not rust buckets likes your cars. A lot of money to fix the rust and it will never be right. And not double or triple. Let us see facts.

  15. Chris in WNC

    distinctive……

    Like 1
  16. Kevin

    Not too bad a price. It is 55 years old after-all. The paint is decent, rust is minimal. Those slant 6’s weren’t screamers. But they were dependable.

  17. Howard A Member

    What a great find. These weren’t very popular to begin with and the ones that were sold were 4 doors, and nobody ever thought of saving a Valiant. The styling was just too much, and I had 2 Valiants, a ’63 & a ’64 and the styling was much more subdued. Not only the first slant 6, but the 1st Chrysler to use an alternator. ( 1960) I agree with Rex, these had a very nice dash. http://www.collectorcarads.com/Picture8/2012APRIL26020.jpg

    Like 1
  18. piper62j

    Our gasoline here in Florida is averaging $1.89 gal.. What’s yours at Dave.. ??? Lets see the facts… Anyone can jump on to Gas Buddy, pick a town in CA and get floored with what shows up as gas prices there.

    Watch House Hunters or bring up earlier episodes on the net.. A tiny little 2br bungalow with room between the houses for a lawnmower, sold for $700,000 out in CA… that bungalow here in Fla would go for $50 – 60K… Jump into Realtor.com sometime and do the homework..

    Our property taxes on a $189,000 home, .64 acre property is just $1,400 a year.. What’s it like in CA?

    Not being a smart ass here, but everyone knows prices in CA are off the moon.. Only rich people live there and really don’t know any better.. IMHO

    Don’t take the comments here personally.. It creates a lot of unnecessary squabbling and gets off subject..

    One last comment.. I would never, ever buy a car from the coastline of CA.. The pacific winds constantly blow salty air inland and it wreaks havoc on most metals there.. I was in SF recently and had to admire all the glass frontage buildings along the water along with stucco covered homes which protect against salty air corrosion..

    Like 1
    • dave

      Gas at this time 2.29
      Diesel 2.19
      Have 2 1/2 acres with a 3000 SF house
      With 4000 SF 25 car garage.
      Taxes 2400 a year
      Sold my condo in Coral Springs FL for
      150 in 2000 and bought this.
      Not rich, know how to manage money. I’m was a 10 car hauler for the last 20 years and and had a resto shop and used car lot in Detroit for the 80s to the 90s I have owned 200 plus muscle cars in my time so I’m a kinda an expert on cars and rust. I would fly my 2 engine 310 Cesna from Detriot to the southern states to buy cars. Just bought here in my area a 56 Dodge Coranett for 1600.00. Needed tires,tune and exhaust and I drive often.100% rust free and no the car listed not mine. I don’t do Epay to sell cars.
      Next question.

  19. Dolphin Member

    Excessive? No

    Distinctive? Kind of.

    Homely? I’m afraid so.

    But that slant 6 sure was something, and this puppy got the job done.!

    • Jason Houston

      It’s a well-established fact that the early Valiants outlasted the early Falcons and Corvairs by several years. The paint and interiors were trash, but they kept on running and running…

      • Ed P

        In exchange of regular oil changes plus the occasional extra quart, slant sixes would run forever.

  20. Paul B

    These were very well engineered cars. They had a lot of new features, they out-handled, out-steered, out-braked and out-hustled the Falcon, and the 3-on-the-floor shifter was very precise, a joy to use. These cars were not cheap; they were designed to be premium compacts. The Slant 6 is a great engine and the torsion bar suspension was very good. Styling is always up to the opinion of the viewer. I was never a big Exner fan during his Chrysler days, but the Valiant was arguably one of his best efforts for Mopar. This one is a little overpriced IMHO, and I am on the wrong side of the country, but I would love to own it, keeping it as is save for a reupholstery job and some cleaning.

    Like 1
  21. Allen Member

    Love this car. Except… for me, an early Valiant has got to be a four-door. There, I’ve said it! ‘ Love coupes, but hate two-door sedans. They always look like bottom-line, entry-level young family sedans. New car buyers will replace them with four-door sedans as soon as their kids get old enough to handle the responsibility of having their own doors. The early Valiant four-door was elegant; beautifully balanced. It looked right. I still want one, after 56 years…

  22. JimmyinTEXAS

    Jamie ask Excessive or Distinctive?
    Excessive, not till you drop in a 6.1L Hemi. That would be excessive, me thinks.
    Distinctive, pretty much if you cleaned it up and massaged the slant a little, or there are some near new 3.6L Pentastars out there looking for a home…

  23. Steve

    Not certain, but I believe this was on CL a few months ago for under $1,000. If the instrument panel surround is trashed (no pic of it in the eBay listing), its the same one. I was considering buying it for a cool LeMons car.

  24. Barry T

    This is just goofy enough looking that I like it. I hope whoever buys it keeps it stock.

  25. Steve

    Hmmmm, Dave=Seller?

  26. Ed P

    The styling on ’60-62 Valiants was oddball, but the cars were tough as nails. The slant 6 is near bullet proof. The had more power than Falcon or Corvair and a better suspension. Fit and finish was a bit of a question on these cars also. All that said, I do believe this car needs to be preserved as it looks to good to trash. The value of any car is how much you want it.

  27. piper62j

    I sold my Cherokee 180 in 2012. Had to give up all the instrument flying due to heart issues.. Damn FAA.. Bought and sold well over 70 muscle cars over the years owning a shop of my own and working for several years as a GM service manager for Pontiac / GMC / Olds..

    4 years USAF w/ one tour in Nam.. Honorable discharge… Married 51 years and 2 kids.. same girl..

    11 years in law enforcement w/ Associates in criminal law..

    Now, I just want to live in peace and enjoy the hobby.. I learned I can’t save the world..

  28. Ron

    My family bought a new 61 Valiant that we kept for 7 years, about 5 years too long. I remember it getting a new paint job after a year or two, because of all the pitting. I think only the right front door opened correctly after a few years, the rest of the interior door handles all fell off. Floors rusted in no time. After any rain, the distributor was wet and it wouldn’t start. I get the advanced engineering, slant six, alternator, etc., but this POS (in conjunction with all the fleet K cars I drove for my employer in the ’80’s) created a prejudice against Chrysler vehicles I have yet to overcome.

    Still, I’m glad to see one left on the planet.

  29. Jason Houston

    That’s the sad thing about having a bad experience with a brand new car – it often taints the owner’s appetite from ever buying another of that brand. And for manufacturers to ignore these folks was legendary.

    • Ed P

      You are absolutely correct. If Detroit had paid more attention to the disappointed new car buyers, they would still be the king of cars.

  30. Mark Hershoren

    Bargain basement price. Very fair. I have an extremely nice 1962 Lancer 4 door in my possession that’s on offer for 15k. It’s many upgrades (Mopar Electronic ignition, Later Dart front discs, factory accessory A/C) make it a wonderful driver. The BIN of this Val is very approachable. Do NOT buy this Valiant unless you’re willing to chat with strangers when ever you fill the tank!

    Talk of it’s style or styling; yeah, when I was a kid and these were every where.I felt they were homely, and this comes from a kid who was being ferried around in a Volvo 122s. The more time I spend with “my” Lancer, the more I stare at the body lines…the more beguiling I find it to be.

  31. John Newell

    The 61 Valiant gets my vote for the second ugliest car ever built. The ugliest is that Citroen that looks like a barn on wheels with a 2 cylinder engine. They all belong together on the same scrap heap. On the other hand they were generally pretty reliable.

    • Jason Houston

      I tend to agree! But comparing a 1948 Sardine Can Citroen to a mint restored 1961 Valiant is like comparing a dumpster full of Mcdonalds to a Gordon Ramsey Beef Wellington.

      • John Newell

        Butt ugliness comes in all shapes, sizes, ages, sophistication, engineering integrity and on and on. But the bottom line is that no matter what, when you reach the epitome of ugliness all those things are irrelevant. In France, the Citroen achieve an unmatched degree of ugliness that in addition to being ugly, it has no charm, or any redeeming qualities in terms of just being able to perform as a car with even modest capabilities. The Valiant by contrast has some excellent performance qualities. But nearly all of them can be subtracted due to its designers not being able to stop while they were ahead. The Citroen was designed in a ravaged Europe where materials were scarce and so were buyers. At the time it really didn’t matter what a car looked like as long as it worked and was dirt cheap. In America, none of those conditions prevailed for the general public. There was no reason to design such an ugly car. This car is so ugly, we have to hope the entire design team and Chrysler’s top executives were all blind drunk at exactly the same time every time they looked in its direction. When it was approved for production, someone must have held a gun loaded with hollow point bullets to the head of whoever signed the document. Later Valiants looked great and I learned to drive in the 1964 model. It was impressive and I’d still buy one today. But the metal crusher is where the 61 and 62s belong. Sorry if this hurts anyone’s feelings but this has irritated me since they were new and this is my first chance to vent on the subject yet still holding forth in a very restrained manner. :o)

      • Ed P

        Jason, that is an interesting comparison. I always thought the 2CV looked like an early concept version of the VW Beetle that had been rejected.

  32. Jason Houston

    John, if you want to see real ugly Chrysler, here’s some that you will definitely toss your lunch over, and which make the 1960-62 Valiant look like a ’57 Adventurer convertible:

    1960, 1961, 1962 Plymouth

    1960, 1961, 1962 Dodge

    1957 – 1963 Imperial

    Virgil Exner took responsibility for most of what Chrysler did to their styling department.

    Believe me, I share your passion for car styling! I can’ think of any part of our universal world that’s uglier than the prettiest Citroen. The guy who designed that should be taken out and hanged.

    • Ed P

      Jason: I would not say the ’60 Plymouth was ugly. It was more of the ’57-59s outdated style. The ’61 was plain weird. The ’62 Plymouth and Dodge defy explanation. The ’60 Dodge Dart used the same body as the Plymouth with different front and rear clips, and looked much better.

      • Jason Houston

        Well, to each his own. Nobody I ran around with could stand the 1960 Plymouth. My brother had braces that year, and whenever he’d laugh or smile he looked like a ’60 Plymouth, and was teased constantly. He wasn’t a car kid at all, but he knew when an insult was hurled his way.

        As a matter of record, 1960 was hardly a banner year for car styling anyway.

        The best way to show off a ’60 Plymouth is to park it next to a 1961!

  33. Rex Kahrs Member

    Wow, Trump may have a chance after all.

    • Jason Houston

      I understand he’s riding around in a rusty, white 1961 Plymouth 4-door sedan!

  34. Rex Kahrs Member

    Houston, you’re a jackass. Take your negative crap somewhere else.

    • Jason Houston

      Shall we take your 1961 Plymouth or your 1948 Citroen?

  35. John Newell

    The 1962 Plymouths were just full size Valiants with more room to express the built in ugliness of the Valiant.

    The 1962 Dodge is a milder form of what was done to the Valiant/Plymouth efforts

    While the others were serious efforts at missed proportion.

    I must be said that at times all manufacturers have been known to take complete leave of their senses but none of course did so on such a grand scale for so long as Rambler, Nash and American Motors collectively except for the years 1967 – 1973.

    I’ve studied this phenomenon and have come to the conclusion that engineers of any discipline lack a sense of proportion and cannot relate to fluidity of line. These rolling abortions always appear when engineers and other non-artistic types are allowed to have too much to say about the design concept that a car, truck or practically anything else is based on. And generally speaking they are generally pure-blind to design cues and even colour. Studebaker was another make that was perennially butt ugly. I wonder how the people responsible for these horrific designs qualified for their jobs.

    • Ed P

      John: You are correct about engineers designing cars. It has been said that the Chrysler/Desoto Airflows of the mid ’30 were designed by engineers. Although these were well built cars, they were a miserable flop in sales.

    • Jason Houston

      My father generally detested all the cars I liked growing up, and he was rarely outspoken about his likes or dislikes. But when those dreadful 1962 Dodges and Plymouths came out, he spoke up: “Those cars look like they took the designs of three separate artists and super-imposed them on top of each another.”

      You’re so right – every mfr. dropped the ball at least once in a while. How about the #1 ugliest car Ford ever made, the 1965 Fairlane? This anonymous mistake didn’t even come in a Squire or a convertible, they were so shamed of it.

  36. John Newell

    I was never saying that those other Chrysler products weren’t ugly. It’s just that the Valiant out distances every other car ever built with the single exception of that rolling tin barn of a Citroen. The Nashes were ugly too. But cute ugly next to a Valiant.

  37. Jason Houston

    I’d take a “cute ugly” Valiant over any “butt ugly” 49-51 Nash, 60 Ply/Dodge, 61 Ply/Dodge, or 62 Ply/Dodge. 1960 was one of Chrysler’s worst sales year in their entire history, but the Valiant kept it from being even worse than it was. The 1960 Imperial has to be the Number One Ugliest Chrysler Product ever made, worse than a thousand Valiants.

  38. John Newell

    From a performance perspective, I’d take the Valiant as well. But I wasn’t talking about performance.

    I learned how to drive excessively fast in a Valiant driven my my best friend at the time. His Valiant was so rusty that he had white plastic raincoats stuffed into the fenders to keep them looking like fenders. There were no interior door panels or any upholstery but the seats we sat on. No seat belts. But we drove everywhere at high speed (80 mph) in that car. It handled like a sports car. Better than any car I’d been in up to that time. But it was unmatched in its ugliness.

    • Jason Houston

      Sounds like the treatment and care it was given had a lot to do with how ugly it ended up. That poor car!

  39. John Newell

    I don’t think that car had anything like treatment bestowed on it other that a heavy treatment of salt each and every winter it survived which wasn’t more than six.

    • Jason Houston

      Well, I’d be surprised to read in the owners manual that the car is capable of a top speed of 80 mph!

      • Ed P

        What’s with all the negative ways J. A Valiant with a 3 speed and 170 slant 6 will make 100 mph. Just hold on, it will get there.

        Like 2
  40. John Newell

    That car did much better than that. Speedometers are made to be buried. My friends and I made a point of burying the speedometer in each and every car we owned and we owned a lot of them. Used cars were very cheap in those days because they started falling apart the minute you drove off the dealer’s lot. They were rusty before you bought them because they were covered in surface rust before they were even painted. That’s why most northern cars ended up in bone yards with very low mileage on them. Most people didn’t bother changing their oil either. They just topped it up. Consequently most engines had about five pounds of sludge in the oil pans.

  41. Jason Houston

    First mistake: buying a used-up, old car from a dealer. 2nd mistake: pushing the poor thing past it limits, just to see how long it would last.

    I bought ALL of my cars from private owners who had nothing to hide. Most were on their last legs, but I ALWAY took meticulous care of my cars so they lasted until I wanted something else and sold it to someone who also got more miles out of it. The only cars I ever junked were parts cars.

    All my friends, however, would get a mint old grandpa car and thrash it to within an inch of it’s life, usually in fewer than 6 months. One famous guy around LA, Dick Beagle, bought a stone-mint, dark green 1950 Dodge 4-door sedan from an old lady who put all of 600 miles on it and immediately drove it 75 mph down the freeways. He trounced the interior, beat the hell out of the brakes and made it do 4WD tricks on dirt roads. He deliberately destroyed it, just for the fun of it. In 5 weeks it went to the crusher.

  42. John Newell

    Until the late sixties cars were dirt cheap even given the economics of the time. You could buy cars anywhere for less than $100. My friend had a knack for getting great cars for $25. But most cars in the north weren’t worth much more than that due to rust. Within a couple of years, rust was visible. In four the car was well perforated. A car that lasted ten years was often held together with wire, clue and pop riveted patches. Floors often had big holes in them that a child could and did fall through. Lance’s 52 Merc had a floor that was composed of licence plates tacked together with braizing rods. Henry’s 56 Pontiac had a rag plugging a hole in the gas tank. The headlights were glued into my 53 Ford Customline, half of the trunk floor was gone. Leo’s 54 Ford Sunliner had a flathead 8 in it that was filled to the underside of the intake manifold with black sludge. Bob took the front and rear fenders off a 56 Chevy and never put them back on. Brian’s Caravelle folded in half in his driveway. My ’54 Ford half ton with the hemi in it had a body that was no longer attached at any point to the frame. It shifted back and forth depending on whether you were accelerating or braking. The ’59 Buick’s rear springs were not attached to the axle housing. My dad’s 47 Buick had no floor between the back of the front seat and the front of the back seat. No brakes either. He used the emergency brake. LIke almost all 55, 56, 57, 58, 59 Chevys, Pontiacs, Buicks and Oldsmobiles in those days, his Chev had no metal for the first 6″ behind the headlights. It was all bondo. Fenders typically flapped in the breeze. Front bumpers were removed to save money on gas and to give a hot rod a raked look. Aerodynamics were still years in the future.

    Most people’s brakes were partially defective, lights out (lots of cars had one headlight out and no signals) and tires bald or nearly bald. Cars were washed by the first and second owners. After that you didn’t wash it in case something fell off or you cut yourself on a rust hole. Windows got stuck in the partly down position and it was considered a skill to start an older car. You had to “know” your car to start it. There was no such thing for many people as being confident your car would start in cold weather or rain – especially if the car was a Ford, British, French or Italian.

    There was no such thing as taking meticulous care of anything because rust always had the upper hand. People who could afford it bought a new car every year. From there car ownership filtered down the food chain and eventually the poorest people owned the death traps. There were no safety checks and until 1964, if you had an accident because your brakes failed, it wasn’t your fault.

    I remember at the age of five what a car or truck would sound like if t there was nothing wrong with it. I lived in Toronto – a major city so I’d gotten to hear thousands of cars by that time. Your comments Jason sound like fantasy land to me.

    It’s because the issues I’ve described were so common back then that the cars on this list are so well respected no matter what they were including the Valiant and the Citroens. You don’t sound like your old enough to have any concept of how amazing it is that so many pre-seventies cars survived at all in northern climes. Lucky you.

    That’s why they don’t built ’em like they used to. Thank your lucky stars for that.

    • Jason Houston

      John, your comments, experiences and observations are fascinating. I have never lived in northern climes, but I can appreciate your experiences, having heard similar war stories from Michigan, Illinois and Wisconsin.

      As for that fantasyland you said I live in, that was a place called Southern California. I’m sure it’s fantasyland to you, but I can assure you it wasn’t. Rust-free cars were all over the place back in the 60’s. In Orange County, most were banged up closed cars with few convertibles, and beat up by several owners.

      When we moved to San Fernando in 1970, the crop of cars were the best to be found in the world – all mint, one- or two-owners, tons of gorgeous 50’s-60’s convertibles in beautiful shape due to the warm, dry year-round climate!

  43. John Newell

    I didn’t mean fantasyland to you Jason. I meant for the rest of us living in the rust belt which is everywhere but the most southern states away from the ocean.

    Those rust-free cars would be a boon to many people these days. A cheap body with a modern drive train would get anyone a truly economical ride. Plus there are rust treatments now that actually work. For the price of swapping in a modern drivetrain from the wreckers, new disc brakes, stiffer springs, MSD ignition and new bushings, you have a new old car for peanuts. That’s what I’ve essentially done with my Rebel Machine except that with the stock motor equipped with MSD it gets nearly the same mileage as my new Dodge Ram 1500 – a bit better actually. But no I’m not driving it in winter even though it is freshly rust proofed. My Machine will never be a points car so I’m using it as a daily driver in spring, summer and fall. Fall in southern Ontario now lasts almost until Christmas and spring starts in April. So with April for nature power-washing the salt off the roads, that gives me seven months of driving a spectacular car. The down time is for improvements.

    Anyway, those old smaller cars make great candidates for re-birthing old cars. The unpopular Mustang IIs and so on as well as lots of smaller GM cars are great for this purpose. They’re still cheap, lots of parts available and drive train swaps should be inexpensive for the mechanically inclined. When you’re done, you’ve saved tens of thousands of dollars. You can even comply with emissions requirements. If you want more power, there are lots of cop cars with great drive trains out there. Not that easy to find but they are there.

    • Jason Houston

      Sorry, but I cannot agree that putting modern drive-train crap in an old car makes it better. If one can’t appreciate an old car the way it was designed to be – whether it’s from 1920 or 1960 – and is in love with power steering, a/c and all that junk old cars never had, then he should just go buy one and forget about wasting all that $$$$ mousing up a vintage car. I’m sure there are plenty of cheap Datsuns, Hondays, etc. that need loving homes.

  44. John Newell

    The old cars I’m talking about represent a rust free chassis, an interior and most of the electrical system. If you can cobble a useful car together for 10 grand or less, that represents a huge savings. I’m not talking about cars older than mid seventies for the most part because older cars need a lot of safety features added like signals and even extra tail lights. Cars after 1973 were gutless wonders but many looked pretty good and handled and drove well enough. Nothing wrong with sprucing one of those up. None or almost none of those cars are ever going to be worth anything to car collectors either. But if you need a car and can’t afford a new one, it’s a great way to go. If you got five years from a $10,000 car you’d be happy. Especially if it didn’t cost anywhere near that much.

    • Jason Houston

      John, I’m in total agreement with you, but my numbers would be substantially different. I’ve gotten five years out of $50 cars in California, no problem. Here in LA, there are just waaay too many cars, that you don’t need to go around cobbling and swapping parts to put together a decent car. And while I personally wouldn’t be seen in an ugly post-1972 anything, I nonetheless wholeheartedly endorse the idea of buying one that’s nice, and keeping it nice, compared to buying some overpriced brand-new Styrofoam Tin Can that’s gonna be recalled each week.

  45. D.P.

    Looks like it’s in fairly decent shape, but I think 6K is a little pricey. 3.5 to 4K in this shape, absolutely!

    My dad bought one of these for my sister to get to work & back in 68 or 69. I loved the body style of that car, just looked sporty to a 6 year old kid. Still does, but a dated sportiness. ;-)

    When I get rich & famous, I’ll buy two of them. One to restore to original condition, and the other to turn into a rest-o-mod monster. Seriously.., on the off chance I do hit the lottery that’s exactly what I would do. Love this car for the memories.

  46. SteveR

    I learned to drive on a 1960 valiant in 1969. The shifter was designed that way. With the seat pulled forward all the way that’s what it would look like.

  47. Joe Member

    Mom bought a white one driving home the alt. went out, good memories.

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