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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • UNFAIR TO BABIES, 1936

Dad's Copilot: 1968

Dad's Copilot: 1968

My father had long wanted a British sports car and in early 1968 he finally bought a new 1967 Austin Healey 3000. It was the last one sold at the dealership and I remember pulling out of the showroom the day he bought it. This is later that summer on our way home from our annual vacation to Fallen Leaf Lake near Tahoe. We had stopped at my grandfather's house in Sacramento for lunch and grandfather snapped this photo as we left for home in the Bay Area. That's me watching my side as dad backs the Healey out of the driveway. View full size.

Color

That shade of blue was known as Healey Blue and was fairly popular on Healeys throughout the production run. I don't remember it getting hot down in the footwells or the floor. The only problems I remember dad having was it overheating on Highway 50 climbing up into the Sierras and having to stop to let it cool. Adding a PCV valve to circumvent the crankcase road tube/vent on the engine was another problem. The gas tank needed replacing in the late '70s and then the camshaft suffered lobe failure and once all that was repaired my mother put her foot down and the Healey was sold in 1980.

Still On The Road?

I wonder if that lovely car is still on the road. The combination of the pale-blue metallic body with the dark-blue fabric top is quite striking and attractive.

When I worked at Nasdaq, one of my co-workers was an enthusiastic member of the local (Washington, DC-area) Austin Healey club and I hope he sees this beautiful photo.

Did the floorboard under the dash get hot on those cars? I remember driving an MG barefoot (probably illegal then and now) as a teenager and the floorboard being uncomfortably hot.

--Jim

 
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Shorpy.com | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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