What Is The Smallest Car You Have Owned And Used?

Discussion in 'Automotive' started by Lon Tanner, Sep 1, 2021.

  1. John Brunner

    John Brunner Veteran Member
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    Yeh, I drove my Bugeye from Richmond VA to Woodbridge NJ when all highway speed limits were 70MPH and folks would drive 90MPH going u I95. My Sprite topped out at 58MPH. It sat so low that all I recall is hours of door handles flying past me and a bad case of tinnitus from winding out the engine the entire drive with a Stebro exhaust. I'd love to own one again but I've lost that youthful sense of denial.

    That was a good deal on your Alpine, all things considered. I've owned lots of cars I got cheap, but none of them under $100.
     
    #16
  2. Faye Fox

    Faye Fox Veteran Member
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    Sunbeam Alpine similar to mine
    SB Al rs.jpg

    I also had a VW 1500 I bought after it was wrecked.
    I had about $700 in it and a lot of hours. Not as nice
    as this one even after repairs. It was ok but not worth bragging about.
    1500 rs.jpg
     
    #17
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  3. John Brunner

    John Brunner Veteran Member
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    My younger brother owned his own car repair business. He got to the point that he bought land and built an 8 bay garage with storage, office area etc, so it was truly his lock, stock & barrel when he retired & sold it.

    He got his start as a teenager fixing up VW Beetles, back in the day where people would pay him to take their broken-down VWs off of their property. He would take ones that had been rolled and swap out the bodies with ones that had mechanical issues, just as easily as the rest of us would work on model cars...it only took two guys to cut loose the welds and transfer the entire shell. Of course he also swapped engines, transaxles,etc.

    For the better part of my life I bought used cars that needed a little work (always cash), would drive them for a few years, and would sell them when I came across a little better vehicle. I drove some real classics ('63 Lincoln Continental) and some not-so-classics ('75 Vega wagon.) Heck, when I moved here in 2010, I bought a 1990 Volvo that had 180,000 on it so I wouldn't rack up the miles on my truck, and the only reason I'm not still driving it instead of that new Mazda I bought is because of hitting a deer. The savings versus buying new in payments, insurance, and property taxes over my lifetime is huge.

    Back on small car topic: In addition to the Simca & Metropolitans, my father owned a '65 Beetle that was a bit of a sleeper. It had been bored out by the previous owner, and had an oil filter installed so as to increase the crankcase capacity to help cool it. It also had an electronic ignition put in it. The problem was it still handled like a Beetle, especially in a strong headwind. At the right speed (80MPH¹), you were one strong gust away from oblivion. But that thing would scat.

    ¹He's deceased but I'm still invoking the Statute of Limitations on his behalf.
     
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    Last edited: Sep 2, 2021
  4. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Senior Staff
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    The smallest one that I can think of was my little Yugo. It was a great little car, super gas mileage, and fun to drive. For such a little car, it could haul pretty large loads, too. I had a pellet stove, and hauled home about a half ton of pellets at a time. The little car was really weighted down, but still ran just fine.

    Mine came to a very sad end, sorry to say. I was driving home down I-5 from Seattle one night, and a drunk driver in a 3/4 ton pickup rear-ended the Yugo, and he was doing over 100 mph when he hit me. The impact pushed me over a steep embankment, and we rolled end over end, and then side to side, landing upside down, with the truck on top of the Yugo.

    I give all credit to God taking care of me and my ex-husband, we both should have died in this wreck. Here is a picture of what a Yugo looks like (except mine was dark blue) and a picture of mine after the wreck.

    DDF68255-F13D-4FD7-A2DF-57C5025A6057.jpeg C32B925A-E19C-4922-BE7A-F26B111766D7.jpeg
     
    #19
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  5. John Brunner

    John Brunner Veteran Member
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    :eek:wow:eek:
     
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  6. Hal Pollner

    Hal Pollner Veteran Member
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    I've had 27 cars, but I don't remember which was the smallest, but I promise I'll get that information for you as soon as possible!

    Hal
     
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  7. Bibbi Wright

    Bibbi Wright Very Well-Known Member
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    The smallest car we ever owned was a Triumph Spitfire mk iv like this one. My husband had it when we got married and we brought it with us to Sweden. We sold it after our first daughter was born as we needed a family car. It had a luggage rack fixed to the lid of the trunk that we strapped my wheelchair onto.

    You can imagine the stares we got when we parked and my husband brought the wheelchair round and lifted a heavily pregnant woman with no arms or legs out of the passenger seat.

    It’s still in use.

    C8CEE1B8-1322-4B89-B2B3-93C271C4C8B6.jpeg
     
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  8. Brian Naginoth

    Brian Naginoth Well-Known Member
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  9. Bill Boggs

    Bill Boggs Veteran Member
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    VW Bettle.
     
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  10. Thomas Stillhere

    Thomas Stillhere Very Well-Known Member
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    A 1967 Opel Rallye Kadette Exact color on this one but mine had no Rallye Lights. The Buick Dealers in America started selling these cars nation wide in 67. The car had very good power for it's size, I know for sure it would do 115 and could hold it's own beside a 350 Camaro. One thing about this 67 model, when it rained you could forget about starting the engine unless you had a can of WD 40 to spray the coil and distributor cap down. The high humidity of Dallas was too much for it. The same thing happened a few years later when GM built their new HEI distributors and tested them in all the Houston Police cars, every last one had to be towed to the dealership. It didn't take long for the fix and it was a much improved water and moisture proof distributor cap and rotor. ;0)

    opel-kadett-rallye-01.jpg
     
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  11. John Brunner

    John Brunner Veteran Member
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    I had the exact same distributor issue with my '59 Sprite, and a dual carb setup as well (but mine were SUs.) I remember the Opels. I managed a gas station during the Odd/Even rationing days, and this local girl with a copper colored GT used to come in all the time. I could never get the guys to wash windshields without being prodded, except for hers. Your car came out the same year as Camaros.
     
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  12. Thomas Stillhere

    Thomas Stillhere Very Well-Known Member
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    I came very close to buying either a Firebird dark dark blue, or the one year only 67 Barracuda with the one year only V8 which if my memory serves me it was a 273cid but I might be wrong. The Opel was very different in 67 and I surely tested it's endurance. The only reason I passed on the Firebird was because of that ridiculous overhead cam-ed six cylinder. The Barracuda was way over priced for the era.
     
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