Bill never saw his dad actually drive this 1962 Plymouth Savoy.
Bill was overseas in military service when his father bought this brand new bare bones sedan- sadly this was to be his last car.
Bill hadn’t been home for six months and his next trip home was for his dad’s funeral.
That was the first time he saw the Savoy.
The Plymouth was secondary to the events of the time but Bill’s mom decided to drive the car for another 2 years. That was enough-she wanted to get rid of the car but one of Bill’s six brothers insisted, “The car should stay in the family”.
After that, the car bounced around Bill’s family like a ping-pong ball.
Bill’s brother drove the car for several years and it became a family taxi so whenever somebody need a car for a few weeks, the Plymouth was pressed into service. Turns out Bill’s dad had no idea how much his family car purchase would live its domestic role as a “family” car.
Eventually the car settled into one family garage (Bill’s brother) and he used it as a second car. Then his daughter took over full time ownership until she tired of driving the ancient Plymouth. The car’s future then became murky until Bill heard about its limited future-a one-way trip to a recycling yard.
That ending to the movie didn’t work for Bill even though he’d never seen his dad drive the car. The old Savoy had a compelling family history and it represented his dad’s last few months. He called his brother and his first question was simple, “What are you going to do with the old car?” The car was saved.
Bill picked up the car 8 years ago and a significant number of those years were spent bringing the old Plymouth back to showroom condition. The car was in pretty bad shape, mice had done a number on it and the body was on its way to a future as a soup can. Bill admits, “the car cost me quite a few dollars”.
Typically the best these stripped down four-door sedans can do in a restoration scenario is offer up fenders to more desirable convertibles. This was the ultimate no-option bare bones car-right down to the 3 speed manual transmission. Bill explained that to his dad, cars were meant to simply “get from here to there and he never drove an automatic”. He couldn’t justify the cost.
Bill drives the Plymouth constantly in the summer and truly enjoys car shows where, for obvious reasons he usually has the only 62 Plymouth Savoy 4-door sedan-within 1000 miles.
He reports that the car “gets great mileage and it’s really good on the road” proving that his dad’s practical car philosophy survives into the 21st century.
Although his pragmatic father may not have agreed with the costs associated with saving his old Plymouth, Bill can only put one value on this car…priceless.
Jerry Sutherland @mystarcollectorcar.com
We have more personal car stories here because that’s what we’re all about at MSCC.