1.02.2011

THE ULTRA COOL CORVAIR MONZA!


In 1960 or '61 (we can't recall) my mother helped out a friend and picked up the payments on a very cool Tuxedo Black Chevrolet Corvair Monza. The Monza made its debut with sportier bucket seats and a bigger flat 6 engine.This car was hot! Not a speedy car as my mom recalls but cool to drive. Mom says it was always in need of a new fan belt! Chevrolet introduced the Sebring Spider Coupe in 1961 to further enhance the sportier, concept image.


The Monza (ours), was a two-door hardtop, tuxedo black with posh red interior and bucket seats. The 1961 engines were upped from 140 to 145 cubic inches. Our Corvair was a 4 speed stick that Mom says was like shifting upside down. It had your normal push button AM radio which was of course set to my favorite station CKLW THE BIG 8.

Our Monza looked a lot like this one below. I used to wash it with my dad and his chamois on the weekends when it was warm. Ours didn't have the cool sport wheels the one below has...


The Corvair Monza had the engine in the back compartment and the trunk in the front like a VW Beetle. Chevrolet had lots of problems with this car's design as Ralph Nader made famous in his book "Unsafe at Any Speed". Having the most weight behind the rear axle caused a lot of spin outs. We never did... but Mom did slide down an icy hill with ours once.


By the time Nader's book was publish (1965) we no longer had the Monza. We then owned an Oldsmobile Dynamic 88. Dad later bought a very retro white VW bug.


Our Monza had hot red interior just like the one above. Neither of us remeber the steering wheel in our Monza. I think if ours had been red I would have remembered that. Must have been black.



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