1958 Plymouth Belvedere Review
'58 Plymouth Belvedere, A Blast From The Past! — For a 50+ year old, this car has some balls! The single four barrel carb setup on a 318ci supplies plenty of "get up and go" to move this vintage American iron. Dual front wheel cylinders, aka "Total Contact Brakes" stop this beast with ease. No noticeable brake fade from the all around drum brakes. Handling is marginal by todays standards, especially on the bias ply tires it's currently riding on. This car is definitely a cruiser. The engine runs strong and smooth and has required very little work to keep running in tip top shape. The suspension squeaks a little due to the bushings and mounts being very tired and dried out, but try to find replacement parts for these cars! The exterior appearance is what drew me to this car. I love big grilles, big fins, lots of chrome and quad headlights. Interior-wise, it's quite a basic setup with cloth bench seats back and front, vinyl padded dash and the most basic of accessories. The original headliner became very brittle and had to be replaced. This car hasn't cost a lot of money to maintain, mostly because I do all the work to it myself. Gas mileage is what you'd expect from a big old-school V8 that has no emissions controls built in. Because of the 4 barrel carb (aka "Power Pak"), the original owners manual insists that only premium gasoline be put in the tank, which in this case it always gets. The engine is designed to run on leaded fuel, so occasionally I put in a lead substitute additive when filling up at a local gas station. Other times I run aviation "Avgas" (100 octane low lead) which is ideal for these old engines. This is by far the neatest car I've ever owned. I always have a blast driving it. It gets thumbs up and a lot of smiles everywhere it goes. People love seeing a taste of past Americana, especially when it is preserved in its original condition as this car is.
Primary Use: Sport/fun (spirited driving, track racing, off-roading, etc.)
Pros: 50's styling, lots of chrome, big fins, lots of power
Cons: Prone to rust, marginal handling
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