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O/T: “What model is it?”
Posted by: Peeeot ()
Date: November 24, 2019 06:26PM

“What year?”

Over the years of owning and driving old cars, this is the number one question I have been asked about anything old I’m driving. Often yelled from another car stopped at a traffic light, or offered unexpectedly from another store/restaurant patron who saw me park, there is rarely a follow-up question, just a nod or thumbs-up or maybe a “nice car.” It has always seemed a little odd to me because usually whoever is asking has no idea what make or model the car is. I would think the first question would be “What is it?”

Of particular curiosity to me is a specific way this question is often posed:

“What model?”

I usually respond to this question by providing the model: “It’s a Corvair.” More often than not, the asker is not satisfied with this answer and tries again with “what model?” What they want to know, though, is of course the year of the car. “1963.” “Ah! Nice car.”

Has anyone else encountered this? When cars are identified by Year, Make, and Model (1963 Chevrolet Corvair), where is this confusion of Year and Model coming from?

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Re: O/T: “What model is it?”
Posted by: MattNall ()
Date: November 24, 2019 06:35PM

I believe when asked Model... of EM..... they want to hear Monza or Spyder..

Sea Mountain, between Charleston Harbor and Coos Bay! SW Oregon Coast
Click HERE for My Website...Click HERE for My TechPages!

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Re: O/T: “What model is it?”
Posted by: joelsplace ()
Date: November 27, 2019 05:35PM

I get a ton of what year? but can't remember a what model? I do get quite a few what is it?
Matt you should tell them 927.

Northlake, TX
5 Ultravans, 114 Corvairs and counting...

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Re: O/T: “What model is it?”
Posted by: jjohnsonjo ()
Date: November 28, 2019 09:11AM

My number one question by far is "is it the one with the turbo" folks seem to remember if they ever rode in one.


65 Corsa Turbo Vert
79 Honda XL 500S
69 Honda CL 160 D
2010 BMW F 650 GS
2003 Bounder 36D
2013 KIA Optima SX turbo-AKA ZIPPY (wife,s car)
69 Newport Holiday Sailboat
Baja 150 dune buggy cart
Coleman HS 500 UTV
2016 KIA Sorento SXL Turbo


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Re: O/T: “What model is it?”
Posted by: Gatorfly ()
Date: November 28, 2019 01:26PM

These days the first question I get is typically, “What kind of car is that?” And secondly “Who made it?” I went to Costco last week to get a battery for one of the Corsas and the service manager asked what the battery was for. I told him a Corvair and he countered with “you mean a Corvette?” I said no, a Corvair. He then asked “What’s that?” and said he had never heard of or had ever seen such a car. He was probably in his late 20s or early 30s.

San Juan Islands, WA

1963 Spyder Conv Laurel Green/Black/White
1963 Rampy 110/4
1965 Corsa Conv 140/4 Tahitian Turquoise/White/White
1965 Monza 110/4 Evening Orchid/Black (2nd Owner)
1966 Monza "More Door" 140/4 Willow Green/Black

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Re: O/T: “What model is it?”
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: November 28, 2019 04:23PM

I had a guy in his 20s ask me "what year is your Mustang?" While I was at a gas station. I don't think there was any real malice behind his remark, I think he honestly thought that was what I had. Gave me a chance to talk to him about the Mustang/Corvair rivalry though.

I too am usually asked the year more than the type of car. I think it's just a safer question for the uninitiated. Easier to talk about 60s cars in general rather than getting specific about a subject they don't feel solid in.


Eric C. Player, Porterville, CA, USA (Seriously! It's the USA out here!)
MEMBER: CORSA National, Central Coast CORSA, South Coast CORSA, Vintage CORSA, Sfba CORSA, and the San Joaquin Valley Corvair Club.
1965 Monza 110, Canary Yellow
1965 Corsa 180 Turbo, Red
1966 Monza 110, Purple
1967 Monza 140, Red
1966 500 110, Black; nicknamed "Shadow"
1965 Monza 110, Camaro Yellow; nicknamed "Silver"
1966 Corsa 180 Turbo, Blue; nicknamed "Bluvair"

"He cautioned me not to take notes. It would not have helped if I had, as he would start a paragraph with, 'It is therefore obvious. . .'
and go on from there to matters which may have been obvious to him and God but to no one else."
-- Robert A. Heinlein, character of Daniel B. Davis, 'The Door Into Summer.'

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Re: O/T: “What model is it?”
Posted by: mtmouse ()
Date: November 28, 2019 04:40PM

While riding my restored Moto Guzzi Eldorado around Atlanta on a weekend a few years ago I had an older policeman pull me over. He said he stopped me to look at my bike. He rode one for the Atlanta Police Department in the early 1970's and had not seen one for years.
We had a nice visit on the side of the road.

Joe in South Ga
1965 Corsa 2 dr Coupe Turbo 4sp because I love the looks
18ft Chaparral 180 Sport because I live on a lake, seemed like the thing to do
Chevy Pickup to tow boat and tote things
Chevy Cavalier because they drive like a go-cart

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Re: O/T: “What model is it?”
Posted by: deltadave ()
Date: November 28, 2019 05:16PM

in the northern states what model is Monza, Nova ect., but the southern states it means the year

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Re: O/T: “What model is it?”
Posted by: solo2r ()
Date: November 28, 2019 05:38PM

mtmouse, I would of thought they would choose Ambassadors for a Police bike?

My Dad had an Ambassador for many years! Pm Me if You want to see a pic!

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