My 1972 Chevelle Malibu – Vroom! Vroom!

In 1976 when I was 20 years old and after I had demolished my 1969 Chevy Nova in an accident coming back from a Bad Company concert in Detroit, I needed to get another car so that I could stop borrowing cars and begging for rides to take me to my job at Michigan Bell.

I had received $800 from my State Farm Insurance agent in the accident settlement. After depositing the check into my bank account, my good friend, Marilyn Conley, and I immediately went window shopping for another car.

It was a late Friday afternoon and Marilyn and I went first to Delehanty’s Pontiac dealership on Pierson Road but despite the many come-ons and pitches from several of their sales staff, there was nothing there that appealed to me.

I really didn’t have a clue as to what kind of car I wanted. I was mainly just trying to see what was out there, and perhaps be able to narrow my search down to 1 or 2 different makes or models.

After we left Delehanty’s, Marilyn drove us to McNally’s Buick and Chevrolet dealership that was at the corner of Flushing and Pierson Roads, only a quarter mile from Delehanty’s.

We walked through all of the rows of the used cars before I saw her, and I fell in love at first sight!

She was a 1972 Chevelle Malibu, with a lustrous and deep forest green color that must have had extra coats of lacquer, she was that shiny and pretty.

Her hood was long and her trunk was short and that gave her such a racy appearance. Her sweeping roof lines also helped make her look sleek and fast.

Marilyn and I wordlessly walked all around her and after circling the car twice, we both looked at each other and smiled at the same time. Marilyn knew I had fallen in love.

We walked up to the offices of the dealership but they were closed. We had not realized that it was already after 5pm. I was deeply disappointed.

At that time in Michigan, it was against the law for car dealerships to be open on the weekends so that meant I would have to wait until 8am Monday morning before I could take that Chevelle out for a test drive and for an inspection by a mechanic friend of mine.

Marilyn and I walked back to look at the car again, and by peering into the driver’s side window, I could see that the car only had 31,000 miles, which was great! I also noticed a recent oil-change sticker on the front windshield as well so that was also a good sign.

However, there was also a 1976 Michigan State Parks admission sticker on the lower passenger side of the windshield, as well as a tow bar and a hitch on the back of the car. Hmmm, maybe that wasn’t a good thing, especially for the transmission, if the previous owners had used this car a lot to tow a heavy boat or a trailer.

The tires were all fairly new with great tread though. I popped the hood and the engine looked great and very clean. The air filter was brand new and there was no corrosion on the battery cable connections. I checked the tension of the belts and also to see if there were any thin areas on them but those were fine as well. So far, so good!

I needed to know more though. I needed to take the car out for a test drive on both the expressway and through the city streets. I also needed to have it thoroughly checked out and inspected too.

But as I gazed at this car, I just had the funniest feeling that I was soon going to be her new owner. I could picture myself driving that car.

I told Marilyn, “I hope this isn’t me getting too far ahead of myself, but I can actually see me driving this car and I really do believe this is going to work out.”

Marilyn replied, “I was just thinking and imagining the same thing! This picture just jumped into my head of you driving this car down Main Street in Flushing.” “You mean on the main block?” “Yeah, that is where I saw you in my head,” Marilyn said.

I excitedly exclaimed, “That’s exactly what had popped into my head as well! I was right in front of Duffy’s Tavern!” And Marilyn replied, “Yes, that is exactly where I saw you in this car, driving down Main Street, right in front of Duffy’s! Oh, this is just too weird!”

“Maybe I really am meant to get this car, Marilyn, but I have to test drive it first and then have Bob give it a thorough inspection before I can even begin to let myself seriously think that I can buy it. First of all, I don’t even know how much it is, there’s no sticker on it anywhere.”

Marilyn frowned as she looked all over the car, but no, there was no price sticker on it.

I anxiously asked her, “Do you think it’s really for sale? Maybe somebody brought it in for repairs or a tune-up and it was parked here by mistake until the owner comes back to get it?”

“No, McNally’s always parks the repaired cars way over there,” Marilyn replied as she pointed off in the distance. “No, I think it is on the used car lot on purpose but maybe they didn’t have time to put a sticker on it before they closed up today. Well, just check back with the dealership first thing Monday morning and find out if it is for sale and how much it will cost. Maybe it will cost a lot more than you can afford right now.”

I didn’t want to even think about that possibility. And despite trying hard to caution myself into not getting my hopes up, I still kept envisioning myself in that beautiful Chevelle for the rest of that Friday.

The next day was Saturday and while I was doing some chores at home around noon time, I got the overwhelming urge to call the dealership. I kept telling myself that it could not and would not be open but that urge would not go away and it grew stronger and stronger.

So I located the number for McNally’s in the phone book and dialed it. After the 6th ring, just as I was about to hang up and curse myself for listening to that stupid inner voice, the phone was answered by a male voice saying “Hello?”

Surprised, I almost dropped the phone! I quickly stammered, “Is this McNally’s dealership?” “Yes, it is but we are closed on the weekends. I’m one of the salesmen but I just dropped in to get something out of my desk and I answered the phone just in case it was my wife.”

“My name is Jeneane Behme and I had called on the faint hope that someone might be there who could give me some information about that forest green 1972 Chevelle Malibu that is out on your used car lot.”

The salesman laughed and said, “Wow, we were all pretty sure that that car would generate a lot of responses and interest but I didn’t think anybody would be calling about it so early! We had just put it out on the lot yesterday afternoon, just a few minutes before we had closed up for the weekend. We had not been able to print up a sales sticker for it yet.”

When I heard that the salesmen expected that car to be sold fairly quickly, I became very anxious. I wanted that car!

“Sir, would it be okay if I came over right now and put a $100 deposit down on that Chevelle so that I could have first dibs on test driving it and purchasing it? I saw it last evening, apparently right after you had put it out on the lot, and I immediately fell in love with it! I only live 5 minutes away from you, so could I please put a deposit down right now to just hold it until Monday or Tuesday at the latest?”

The salesman hesitated, “Well, I’m not even supposed to be here today on an official basis but…are you sure you can be here in 5 minutes?”

“I’m positive! Can I come over right now?”

“Sure, come on over and I will write you up a receipt in exchange for the $100 deposit and then that will give you first choice on buying the car. You can test-drive it on Monday morning when we open at 8am but I already know you will want to purchase it. She is a real beauty and she has been immaculately maintained. We have all of the maintenance records that the previous owner scrupulously kept and we will give those records to whoever ends up buying the car.”

Gleefully happy and excited, I borrowed my dad’s Skylark and drove as quickly as possible to McNally’s. The salesman, whose first name turned out to be Dave, invited me into the office area.

I gave him the $100 deposit and he made me out a receipt that specifically said that the money was for a deposit to hold the 1972 Chevelle Malibu until the following Wednesday in my name or until I decided to either purchase or not purchase the listed vehicle, whichever came first.

If I chose to purchase the vehicle, the deposit would be deducted from the sales price of the car. He included the car’s inventory number, dated the receipt and then both Dave and I signed it.

Dave then paper-clipped the original receipt to the envelope containing my $100 and then he locked everything in his desk.

I was almost dancing with joy as I began to quiz Dave on what all he knew about the car as we left the office and he locked the doors.

He said that it had belonged to a husband who had a local family that Dave knew quite well. The car had been used primarily to haul their trailer up north several times a year. It had been owned by just the previous owner and he had always taken great care of the car.

That was the reason for the state park sticker, the trailer hitch and the low miles. The reason why they were selling the Chevelle was because they had just picked up their special-ordered brand new Buick station wagon.

We both walked over to where the Chevelle was sitting, looking even prettier in the full sunshine. I ached to be able to drive it but at least I had a deposit down on the car that prevented anybody else from even trying to purchase her out from under my nose. Monday morning could not get here fast enough for me!

I gratefully thanked Dave so much for allowing me to come over and put a deposit down on the car. I told him I would be there first thing Monday to take her out for a test drive.

I asked him if I would also be allowed to have a mechanic friend of mine inspect the car at his work after my test drive. I told Dave that it would be Bob Jurvelin, who worked as a mechanic at Moore’s Mobil on the corner of Elms and Coldwater Roads in Flushing Township, who would be checking out the Malibu.

Dave told me that he had heard good things about the repair work they do there and that as long as I cleared it with the used car department manager about where I would be taking the car and when I would be approximately bringing it back, he didn’t think there would be any problem at all.

I was elated, things were so smoothly falling into place! Dave and I shook hands, said goodbye, and we said that we would see each other early Monday.

I immediately drove to Marilyn’s place and eagerly told her what had just happened. She could not believe that very strange coincidence about that inner voice that had so strongly urged me to call the dealership when a salesman had just happened to stop by there at that particular moment.

And she said it was also weird that Dave, the salesman, had agreed to take my money as a deposit right then and there as well! I showed her the receipt and it clearly stated that I had first choice on whether or not to buy the car.

We both shook our heads at how this was so oddly coming together but she was just as excited that I was that much closer to possibly owning that beautiful car.

Monday morning I was there at McNally’s impatiently waiting for the doors to open at 8am. After showing the receipt to the used car department manager and explaining to him what mechanic I wanted to check out the Malibu after I had taken it for a test drive, the manager agreed to let me take the car. He made a copy of my driver’s license and handed me the keys.

I slid in behind the steering wheel, inserted the ignition key and turned it on. Surprised to hear how deep and rumbly that car sounded, I got out and bent over to look and see if there was a problem with the muffler.

I was further surprised to discover that there were dual exhausts with glass-packs under the car. No wonder she sounded like she was ready for the Indy 500!

I got back in again behind the wheel and as I tapped the accelerator, I began grinning from ear to ear as I heard that satisfying Vroom! Vroom!

I took the Chevelle out for a really good test drive. I drove her onto the expressway to see how smoothly it accelerated. I kicked her up to 75 mph and then on a straight stretch of road in the middle lane, I briefly took my hands off the steering wheel to see if the car drifted to either side. That was to test to see if there was any problems with the steering or if it needed a front end alignment.

I listened and tried to feel through the steering wheel and by the seat of my pants for any knocks or hesitations or anything else wrong with the engine or the transmission that could be troublesome but the car ran as smooth as a top.

I carefully listened again as the car decelerated on an off-ramp and then I took it through the streets of Flushing. I deliberately braked it hard a few times and I lingered at a few stop signs to listen to how the engine sounded at an idle. I went through a couple of parking lots, parallel parked her and generally checked out how the car performed in reverse.

Then I drove to the Sunrise restaurant on Pierson Road and went in to order a breakfast meal. I wanted the car to sit there for at least 30 minutes in one spot to see if there would be any stains under the car when I left.

I was very happy to see no stains or drips of any kind as I pulled out of my parking spot to inspect the pavement. Any black drips would indicate an oil leak somewhere while a dark red stain would indicate transmission problems.

Then I took the Chevelle to Moore’s Mobil where Bob was expecting me to bring the car in. I waited off to the side while Bob climbed under and over the car, checking for a wide variety of things. Finally he took the keys from me and told me to get into the passenger seat while he gave the car his own test drive.

When we had finally returned to the gas station, Bob asked me how much was McNally’s asking for the car. Surprised, I started laughing as I realized I had never even asked Dave or the department manager what they were going to list as its price!

Bob said that the Chevelle was in excellent condition with no mechanical problems that he could detect at all and it had low miles for being 4 years old.

He also asked me if I knew that that forest green color was a special-ordered color from the factory and that it cost more and I replied that no, I did not know that. Bob said that with that special paint job and the upgrades to the 350 hp engine, the 4-barrel carburetor and everything, the Chevelle cost around $3,000 brand new four years ago.

I asked him what did he think the car was now worth and he told me that in consideration of how well maintained the car was, and the special paint job, the dual exhaust and glass packs, the tow bar and hitch and the low miles, he still would not pay over $1,800 for it.

I gulped. With the full $800 as a deposit, I would still have to take out another car loan for the remaining money…and that is if I could talk the dealership into taking $1,800 for the car. I still had no clue what they were going to be listing for the price.

I thanked Bob so much for his help and he told me to haggle with the dealership and get them down to that price, even if I had to say I wanted my $100 deposit back because I would walk away from buying the car.

So on my way back to the dealership I made a daring decision. I stopped off at my local Genesee Bank branch where I had my savings and checking accounts and also where I had taken out my previous loans for my college expenses and for my first car.

I asked my loan officer about the possibility of me qualifying for another car loan and I pointed out the window to the Chevelle parked in their lot as the one I was hoping to buy. I also told him about Bob’s professional opinion about its condition.

He asked me what did the dealership want for the car and I had to confess that I had no clue since they had put it out on their lot Friday just before closing time with no price sticker on it.

I explained to him about Bob’s guesstimate of not paying over $1,800 for the car. The loan officer checked in the Kelley’s Blue Book what the car, with all of its accessories, would be now worth and he said that Bob’s guess was pretty spot on.

The loan officer then told me to wait a minute. He looked in the phone book, dialed a number, and then with surprise, I heard him ask for the manager of the used car department. He winked at me when he saw my jaw drop.

My loan officer told him that he had driven past the dealership early this morning and had noticed the dark green Chevelle for sale out in front and he was wondering what was its sales price?

He was put on hold and then a few minutes later, my loan officer said, “Uh-huh, uh-huh, okay, well thank you for the information” and then he hung up.

I anxiously waited to hear what they had told him and the loan officer said that McNally’s was asking $2,300 for the car and I almost started crying.

He said that the manager had also told him that there had already been 4 phone calls, not including his, about the car.

I exclaimed, “How could that be if they had just put it out on the lot right before they closed Friday and I’ve had it since 8am this morning when they opened?”

The loan officer said that it could be that people who had seen it in their used car lot over the weekend were already calling about it, just like I had seen it Friday. He also congratulated me for getting the $100 deposit and the exclusive receipt that gave me first dibs.

I asked him could he please give me some advice on how to get some leverage when I go back to dicker with Dave, the salesman, over the price? I also asked if there was any possibility that I would qualify for another car loan, especially one that would be for more money than my first car loan?

The loan officer smiled at me as he reassured me that there would be no problem at all with me getting another car loan because of my good credit, even if I couldn’t get the dealership to go lower than $2.300. It would just take a few days to get the paperwork all done and put in order.

So I asked him if there was anything he could put on paper that just about guaranteed that I would be able to get a loan at least for $1,000 which would be all that I was intending to borrow. I was going to put the whole $800 of the insurance money down on the Chevelle and I really didn’t want to go much higher than $1,800 total.

The loan officer said that he could put something like that in writing and he filled out a sheet of paper that said something to the effect: “To Whom It May Concern: Our client, Jeneane Behme, is guaranteed to be able to borrow up to $1,000 from Genesee Bank for any car she chooses. If you have any additional questions please call …” and then he wrote down his name and the bank branch telephone number.

He said that if the dealership knows that they will have cash in hand in just a few days, from both my loan and my $800 deposit, then they would probably be more willing to come down from their stated sales price.

But with all of the indicated interest from the phone calls already about the Chevelle, they also might not be willing to negotiate a lower price. But bargaining is always a good gamble to take my loan officer said.

He wished me good luck. I sincerely thanked him for all of his help and I told him that I would let him know what the outcome turned out to be. Then I drove back to the dealership to sit down and talk to Dave.

Dave said that they had already received 5 phone calls about the Chevelle that day and he reminded me that he had predicted that that car would sell very quickly.

I told him that in my excitement in being allowed to put a deposit down on the car, I had forgotten to ask how much was McNally’s asking for the car. Dave promptly said, “$2,300 and she is worth every penny.”

I nodded as I told him that I was quite happy with the condition of the car from my test drive and that my mechanic friend was pleased that he had found no major issues when he inspected it.

I then told Dave, “But Bob and I both agreed that the price of the car should be around $1,500, especially considering that it cost $3,000 brand new four years ago.”

And then the dickering began! I finally got the price down to $2,000 but I could not get Dave to go any lower. At that point, I pulled out the sheet of paper from my loan officer and gave it to Dave to read.

I explained to Dave that I had $700 in cash in the bank that I would withdraw and place, along with my original $100 deposit, as a down payment on the Chevelle, and that the loan officer had said that the paperwork could be completed in just a few days for the remaining $1,000 in a loan.

I then told Dave that I could not go any higher than $1,800 and I sat back to see what Dave would now do. He did some figuring on a pad of paper and then he excused himself because he had to speak to his department manager.

After a few minutes he returned and he said that his department manager was willing to split the remaining $200 difference between us. Would I be willing to pay $1,900 for the car?

I hesitated but then I quickly guesstimated that the extra $100 spread out over the life of the loan wouldn’t be that much of a problem. But then I realized that I wasn’t even sure if my loan officer would authorize to grant me that extra $100.

So I asked Dave if he could please call my loan officer just to see about that extra $100 in the loan. Dave chatted with my loan officer who told Dave that he had no problem doing that and then he asked to speak to me.

My loan officer asked, “So is it a done deal? Are you definitely buying the car?” I laughed as I told him I wasn’t sure yet. So I put my hand over the receiver of the phone while I asked Dave that since my loan officer had approved the extra $100 for the loan, did that mean we had a deal?

Dave smiled as he shook my hand and told me we had a deal. I began grinning from ear to ear as I told my loan officer that I was all set to buy the car. He began to laugh as he told me that he could tell how happy I was and that he was happy for me.

So Dave and my loan officer went over all of the details and the information concerning the car over the phone.

While they were doing that, I went into the office of the manager of the used car department to sign papers that stated that I would be putting $700 cash down, along with the previously received $100 deposit, for a combined total of $800 down. I would then obtain a bank loan for the remaining $1,100, or come up with the cash, within the next 14 days.

I took a whole bunch of papers back to my bank to give to my loan officer. Then he put together papers of his own that I had to sign after I had gone to one of the tellers to withdraw the $700 out of my bank account.

I took those papers my loan officer had given me, along with the money, back to the dealership. Dave and I walked out to where the soon-to-be-mine Chevelle was parked to put a “Sold!” sign on the windshield.

When the loan papers were signed in a few days, and I had transferred my car insurance from the Nova to the Chevelle, I took the check for $1,100 and copies of all of the paperwork to the dealership who then gave me the title transfer papers, registration certificate and the car keys.

Marilyn had driven me to the bank and then to the dealer and when I came out, triumphantly holding up the car keys, she began grinning from ear to ear in a way that matched my own expression.

She climbed into the passenger seat of the Chevelle as I screwed on the license plate that had previously been on my Nova and then I got behind the wheel.

I put the key into the ignition and I paused before turning it to look over at Marilyn to give her the biggest grin. When she heard the loud rumbling of the engine, her eyes got as big as dinner plates and I started laughing so hard.

“How big is this engine?” Marilyn asked in awe. “She’s got a 350 V-8 with a four barrel carburetor, and dual exhausts with glass-packs”, I proudly told Marilyn. “I know exactly how you are feeling right now! The hairs on my arms stood up too when I first started her up!”

As I pulled out onto Flushing Road, I noticed that the gas tank was almost on empty so I drove into the city of Flushing to get gas at the Shell station.

I noticed that the attendant kept staring and checking my car over as he pumped in a full tank of gas. When I handed him the money, he asked me if this had been the car just recently for sale at McNally’s.

I proudly said, “Yup, it had been put out on the used car lot just before they closed Friday afternoon and by Monday afternoon, I had a purchase agreement to buy her!”

He asked me what I had paid for the car and he whistled in appreciation at the good deal I had bargained. Then he told us that his best friend had seen the car on Saturday morning and he had been frothing at the mouth ever since about how much he wanted to own that car.

The attendant told us that his friend had said he had been willing to pay up to $2,200 for my car and I blanched, realizing how close I had come to not owning my Chevelle.

I told the attendant about how I had coincidentally spoken to Dave, the car salesman, on Saturday afternoon and how I had immediately driven over and placed a $100 deposit on the car just to allow me the first chance at purchasing it.

The attendant shook his head and smiled, as he told me that the Chevelle must have been meant to be mine. I thanked him and as I drove off, Marilyn started chuckling.

She said she was going to wait until later to tell me this but after I had gone to her place Saturday and told her about calling the dealership and putting the money down on the car, she had told her neighbor about that strange coincidence.

He asked Marilyn if it had been that dark green Chevelle Malibu at McNally’s that I had put a deposit on and she confirmed that that was the car.

He became angry as he told her that he had already made up his mind to go to McNally’s early Monday about that same car because he had known the previous owner and had always admired it.

I started laughing as I told her, “Wow, I cannot believe how incredibly lucky I am to have bought this car! This is starting to get really funny! Well, that salesman had said that the whole sales department had predicted that it would quickly sell and boy, were they right!”

My Chevelle Malibu turned out to be the best car I have ever owned. I so loved my baby! She was the most dependable and reliable car and I was so proud that she always got so many admiring looks and compliments.

My Chevelle Malibu was not a “SS”, which was the abbreviation for the “Super Sport” package that could be ordered for a heckuva lot extra when my car was new.

The Super Sport package usually included the “SS” logo on the hood and the trunk, wide racing stripes also on the hood and the trunk, a 402 or a 454 engine, and a more powerful transmission. In 1972, the Chevelle was the second highest selling American car so they had proved to be quite popular.

However, my particular Chevelle did have the upgraded package of the 4-barrel carburetor and the dual exhausts plus the special forest green paint color that had the extra lacquer coats.

And oh, was she speedy! On Carpenter Road across the Flint River there was a very nice, straight and smooth stretch of road between the many acres of farm land on both sides.

Some of the local kids had measured out and painted quarter-mile start and end markers and impromptu races could be had late on Friday and Saturday nights in the summer times.

Several times Marilyn and I would join in and my baby never lost. That was always so thrilling to feel the gathering power of the engine and the tranny under my butt!

And that is the only way I can describe how to be a good driver: you have to feel and sense things through the sounds and the vibrations that you get, literally, in the seat of your pants and in your hands and fingers on the steering wheel.

I had my baby for 11 years until she was 15 years old, which is a very long time for any car built in the early 1970’s.

My Chevelle had endured so much with me in those 11 years. Marriage, an ill-fated attempt by my husband to get me to sell my Malibu, divorce from the butt-head husband, Tara’s birth and early childhood, so many trips hauling furniture and possessions from the many moves to various houses and apartments, so many miles on vacation trips, so many memories with so many people in my beloved car.

She slowly became shabbier and shabbier and that always made me so sad. As she grew older, I so wanted to be able to strip her down and refurbish her back to her glory days, but I never had the extra money to do so.

I kept the most important things well maintained right up to the very end, with oil changes every 5,000 miles, tune-ups once a year, good tires properly balanced and rotated and with the right amount of air pressure.

There were a couple of times I went without things, like a new coat for instance, in order to get my baby’s oil changed when it needed it.

But towards the last couple of years while I had her, that old Michigan problem of rust from the copious amounts of salt used on all of our roads in the winter time, began to take over more and more of her body.

Sometimes when one of her doors were closed, showers of rust particles would rain down on the pavement.

In the fall of 1987, when she had almost 200,000 miles on her, I had dropped off my Chevelle to Bob so that he could give her a tune-up, an oil change and rotate and balance her tires before the worse of the winter soon coming up would begin.

Bob called me up a few hours later and he told me to sit down because he had bad news for me.

He said that the frame on my car was now so rotten, he had been afraid it might break in two just putting it up on the hoist. Bob told me, “Jeneane, I’m so sorry but you really have to put your baby to sleep. She has to be junked because she is just not safe for you to drive anymore.”

I asked him, “Well, what would happen if the frame broke while I was driving it?”

Bob replied, “Well, half the car would go one way, the other half would go another way, and you would be in the middle, torn in two. It would not be good! I know you love your baby and you have kept her running far longer than most people would have been able to do, but it’s time to let her go before you and Tara get seriously hurt.”

I started crying as I asked Bob if I could at least drive her home until I could think about what exactly I would do with her but I promised him that I would not drive her at all after I got her home.

So Bob came and got me and I sadly drove my Chevelle home and parked her in the side yard until I could decide what to do with her.

I even considered the possibility of taking out another loan to get her frame and body work all taken care of but when I asked Bob if he could tell me how much it would cost to do all of that, he laughed and said that no bank would loan me the money because the car would still not be worth how much it would cost to refurbish her.

Even if I could obtain that kind of a loan, logic, common sense and reality told me that I had far more important things to worry about than to spend money I didn’t have on a car, even a beloved one, but still just a car.

So I reluctantly made the decision to call up a towing company that would pay cash for any unwanted junkers. I was given $50 for my baby.

I cried and I cried as the tow truck driver hooked up my beloved Chevelle and I sadly watched her pathetically bounce behind the tow truck until they had turned the corner and she was out of my life forever.

I know that some people will read this and think this is just sentimental nonsense and about a car no less! And perhaps they might be right. And perhaps they might be full of shit.

I’m a Michigan girl, through and through. We take our cars seriously here.

After all, the Buick company, the Chevrolet, Ford and Chrysler companies, as well as General Motors were all begun here in Michigan. The first signed contract between the U.A.W. (United Auto Workers union) and G.M. was achieved after the success of the 1936-37 Sit-Down Strike in Flint, my childhood hometown. Michigan IS cars!

I was brought up to love, respect, and properly maintain cars. And I raised Tara to have those same feelings about cars too.

There have been many numerous times when Tara and I will see a fine, nicely restored muscle car on the road and both of our heads will be cranking around to check it out for as long as possible.

And if asked what did the driver look like, we will both have stupidly blank looks on our faces: who notices the driver when all we can see is that lovely, lovely badass car with that deeply felt roar of a big engine?

So yes, my Chevelle Malibu holds a deeply rooted car-shaped spot in my heart, as well as in my memories. I can still remember when that GTO tried to race me and ….

Malibu 1972

Malibu Rear End

I do not own a scanner so I cannot post the pictures of my beloved 1972 Chevelle Malibu but here are some images of a very similar one from Google. Please click on the images to get the much bigger and better view.


11 thoughts on “My 1972 Chevelle Malibu – Vroom! Vroom!

  1. You brought back memories of the cars of that period. They appear so different from today’s sleek autos. But those old cars withstood accidents better. Is it me or did it seem like there were less fatalities on the road? Maybe people weren’t as aggressive on the highways. But I digress…very nice story.

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    1. I’m not really sure about whether there are less or more fatalitites. The old cars were very sturdily built with strong impact steel frames and bodies but they did not have seat belts or air bags then and as they aged, the steel frame and body rusted out and then became a safety hazard, just like my Chevelle did. The newer cars have more plastic than the older ones but they have steel side impact panels, steel roof supports, air bags, seat belts, bells and whistles to let you know when you have veered into the other lane, etc. If there are more fatalities now, then that could also be attributed to a larger population, more licensed drivers, more drunken drivers, more road rage (who had ever heard of that in the 60’s and 70’s?) and just less politeness, courtesy and patience than in the past. But I digress also, lol, thank you so much for your comment and for liking my story! 😀


  2. My Dear Jeneane, You surely are a ‘Michigan girl,’ and so knowledgeable about Cars, I was wondering if You were Male. Then that bit about ‘my husband’ got me back on track. Kudos on Your knowledge. And Your Passion for that Car. Hope You have a Good one now. Love and Regards. 🙂

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    1. I was the only girl so I think it was easiest for my dad to just treat me like my brothers so he taught me a lot about cars and tools lol. It amused me sometimes when previous boyfriends and the ex-husband would be a bit miffed when they found out that sometimes I knew more than they did. But I’ve always been a firm believer that women should know how to, at the very least, check the oil and the tire pressure and that men should know how to cook and clean and diaper their children. I don’t think it’s wise to have such basic knowledge be so gender-based. I taught my daughter how to lay down the perfect bunt in baseball, how to use basic tools and how to check her car’s oil, as well as how to cook and clean etc., and it did not harm her femininity in the least. Or mine 🙂

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