The Berry Family of Central Texas

Then and Now

Richard's Cars

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For many years I enjoyed having a car that was somewhat distinctive - a little different - including a Buick Roadmaster Convertible, Fiat 850 Spyder convertible, and a Chevy Malibu SS396. Then it was family stuff for a while, but in 84 I bought a Nissan 280ZX Turbo, followed by a Mitsubishi 3000SL in 1991, then a 1999 BMW M3 Convertible, and now a 2007 Mustang GT Convertible.   

Here is the '99 BMW M3 Convertible - a beautiful car, very fast and very stable. 

My Car History (not including various vehicles that Carol has driven)
This is my nostalgia page.  I've been meaning to document all the cars that I've owned - so here's the list.  The photos are of similar cars I found on the Web.  It would take me weeks to find photos of all of my old cars - perhaps for next year. 

1953 Buick Special My first car - in high school.  A 4 door behemoth.  Straight 8 engine and manual transmission.  I replaced the clutch by myself with the car on some wooden ramps I made in our dirt driveway.  Mine was about this color of blue. 
1958 Buick Roadmaster Convertible A gorgeous car - mine was white with red leather interior, power windows and seats, and a speedometer that was a horizontal strip instead of a dial.  The Flight Pitch automatic transmission had no gears - it used a continuously variable set of vanes.  I had to have the transmission rebuilt shortly after buying it.  I had this car when Carol and I started dating. 
1962 Ford Galaxy A pretty vanilla car that got poor gas mileage - but in those days who was counting. 
1963 Corvair Spyder This car was turbo-charged, but the turbo never worked for me - it was stuck.  The heater used engine air and always smelled like burning oil.  The transaxle went out and I rebuilt it in Carol's dad's garage.  Mine was white with red leather interior. 
1968 Fiat 850 Spyder This was as close to a real sports car as I could afford in '68.  It was similar to the Alfa Romeo used in the movie The Graduate but smaller and less expensive.  I drove it from Albuquerque to Rochester, MN, and then from Albuquerque to Endicott, NY.  It was very comfortable to drive but very underpowered (only about 50 horsepower).  
1970 Chevelle SS396 This car had a 402 cu in engine and developed 350 horsepower!  The automatic transmission would snap your head back when shifting into passing gear.  The timing gear went out on the way from Missouri to North Carolina and scrambled the pushrods.  A garage got us going again and I replaced the pushrods when we got home.  Mine was gold with black stripes on the hood. 
1978 Toyota Celica Another pretty vanilla car but fun to drive.  I passed it down to Steve as his first car.  Mine was gold/brown. 
1983 Nissan 280ZX Turbo A very nice car with removable T-tops, all digital gauges, and it talked!  The turbo was a bit slow to kick in but provided great acceleration when it did.  The standard transmission was a bit difficult to shift and made smooth acceleration difficult - so I opted for automatics after that.  Mine was black. 
1991 Mitsubishi 3000SL Another very nice car that really looked good and was fun to drive.  But it was front-wheel drive which caused the steering to be somewhat heavy and resulted in torque-steer when pulling away from a stop.  Mine was a deeper blue.  People would honk a traffic lights and tell me what a beautiful car it was.  
1999 BMW M3 A fine automobile with fantastic engineering and nimble handling.  A convertible is wonderful during the short Spring and Fall in Texas.  The rest of the time I was thankful for a good heater and A/C.  This photo is exactly like mine - Estoril Blue with light gray interior. 
2007 Ford F-350 A big hunk diesel truck - good for hauling big things.  See our Travel section for more details.