LOOKING TO FUTURE: Grumpy Gale is contemplating filling his shed with future 'classics'.
LOOKING TO FUTURE: Grumpy Gale is contemplating filling his shed with future 'classics'. Hamish Broome

Muscle cars or hunks of junk?

EVER since I can remember, I have had a love for cars. Far more than other inanimate objects with engines.

I've had passing love affairs with bikes and boats, but the car remains my one true love.

I grew up in the period of the classic Aussie muscle car. The GT Falcon, Monaros, Chargers and Toranas to name a few. Not all of us can afford one of those classics. I know I can't. The Aussie-built car in my garage is being built to cruise rather than race.

When it's done it will get a dust-off on a Saturday and roll down the road with a bit of AC/DC or Cold Chisel thrumming through the speakers.

Quite obviously, I'm not the only one who loves our automotive history.

There are still plenty of classic cars on the road and in garages everywhere.

Yesterday I saw a guy at the traffic lights in a sweet-looking classic station wagon from the early '70s. Windows wound down, couple of kids in the back and a smile on his face a mile wide - a smile I'd have on my own face in the same circumstances.

It wasn't a classic car. It was no GT or GTS or R/T.

Just a good old "family car”. The type of thing that would have been the family daily driver from 45 or so years ago.

The same type of car that was packed to the hilt with kids and gear once a year or so to go to the coast for a couple of weeks. Functional transport. An ever-present constant in the 1970s family's trip through life.

The sedan-based station wagon is almost gone from salerooms.

It's been all but replaced by SUVs or the twin-cab ute. Camping grounds, carparks and the roads are full of them, and there seems to be a new one, or at the very least a model update, every second week.

It makes me wonder though what my kids and grandkids will have to look forward to in the future, car-wise.

What will be a "classic cruiser” in another 40 or 50years?

What sort of cars will they cherish from their childhoods and lovingly restore in the backyard sheds of the future?

I don't know, maybe I should be filling a shed up now with slightly worn-out SUVs, putting them up on blocks and covering them with sheets. Leaving them for a few decades to be uncovered later as "classic barn finds”.

I really don't think it matters what type of vehicle they are. They could probably be the worst SUV of all time.

In 40 or 50 years' time they'll be "classics”.

Time heals all wounds.

I can see it now. They'll be lined up around the corner in droves when they finally cut the chains off the barn doors of old "Grumpy Gale's” shed to see what lies within.

There'll be a hurried rush to lift the dusty and guano-covered sheets.

A gasp and then silence.

The crowd then walking away with the obvious gait of the disappointed. Slumped shoulders. Heads down. Silent.

Move in close and you'll be able to hear one of them mutter contemptuously as they shuffle away.

"He bought a Jeep!”

I was wrong. Time only heals some wounds.



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