Classic cars are a way of life for Gerry Lentz. More than a few of them have come and gone in his life during the years.
“I’ve had three Dodge Chargers: two ’66 Chargers and a ’67 Charger. I had a 1970 Ford Torino. I had a ’55 Chevy that I redid. I had a 1929 Model A that I totally restored,” he begins. “I don’t think I’ve ever been a year without a classic car of some type.”
But while many of the classics have come and gone, a certain Dodge he came across more than two decades ago has proved to be a keeper.
“I’ve had this one now for 22 years,” Lentz says as he eyes the gleaming black 1969 Dodge Coronet R/T in his lakeside driveway.
It’s a rare model that was produced for just a short time, according to Lentz.
“They only made these for three years; ’67, ’68-’69, and half a year in 1970,” he explains.
When Lentz bought this one, it was painted gold and in pretty good shape. About three years ago it was time for a full restoration and, at that time, he had it painted a shiny black .
Lentz gets the car out on occasion, but has added relatively few miles to the odometer.
“When I bought it, it had 61,000 miles on it, and it just turned 70,000 original miles on it,” he notes.
For the most part, Lentz enjoys driving for outings with friends from the Clear Lake Auto Social Club (CLASS).
“I think that’s the biggest reason for having it,” he says. “We have fun with the group and go out for dinner and picnics and enjoy talking about cars and old times.”
The 440 magnum engine doesn’t sip gasoline; it’s a guzzler at about eight miles per gallon, another good reason to keep it primarily as a social car.
Gas was a little cheaper, and the lead was already in it, when Lentz bought his first Coronet R/T back in 1967. Lentz was fresh out of college and in his first good job when he bought a new, rather than used, car for the first time.
“It’s a little nostalgia for me driving this one,” he says. “I just roll down the windows and have fun with it.”
Contact Darren at 953-4822 ext. 304 or email@example.com to recommend someone for an upcoming issue of “What’s In Your Garage?”