This is Down On The Street Bonus Edition, where we check out interesting street-parked cars in places other than the Island That Rust Forgot. Czech automotive journalist and Imperial importer BobAsh is on the job!
He's captured a pair of cars that you don't often see together in the wild: a 1968 Ford Galaxie 500 and a Tatra 603. We'll hand over the writing duties to Bob now:
Welcome to Down On The Street, where we admire... No. No island that rust forgot this time. This time, we'll look to a town hidden far, far away in Europe, so far that you couldn't find it. But unfortunately, rust can.
And right in the beginning, I have to admit I cheated. That white 1968 Galaxie 500 is, in fact, mine. And the Tatra belongs to a friend of mine. And it's in front of my parents' home.
But we didn't stage those cars for pictures. They did, themselves. So maybe we didn't cheat that much after all, maybe it was meant to be a DOTS material.
And how comes two old V8s end up sitting like that in the street, noses facing oposite directions, engines facing the same? Well, they did what elderly cars do. They just quit there. We took a friends' Tatra for a little afternoon cruise, and decided to take my ‘68 Galaxie 500 as well. So we're coming to my parents' home to pick it up, when the air-cooled V8 coughs, sputters and dies. It's owner Michal tries to start it repeatedly, but with no success. He pops open the trunk engine cover and tries to find out what's wrong, but no solution seems to be found.
So I go around the house to take a Galaxie, which lives there on the street in summer, and go get my other car, so I can tow Tatra back home (I don't carry a rope in Galaxie and it doesn't have anything to tie it to anyway). I get there, start the car and go on the street. I park it, with engine running, and go ask Michal if he has anything new. We stand there for a minute or two, looking at the engine hopelessly, when I hear the 390 cubic inch big block on the other side of the street cough, sputter and die.
When you're so cheap you buy gas two gallons a time, you probably shouldn't be driving fullsize, big block powered Ford with broken fuel gauge, unless you like long walks with a gas jug in hand.
So that's how you get two V8, one cooled by water and other by air, one in the front and one in the back, standing side-by-side on a Czech street.
Of course, the Tatra cooled-off and started right in the moment when I returned with the gas. But it apparently loves the spot, because when we returned to drop the Ford off later that evening, it died on the exactly same spot. Apparently, it likes the place and wants to stay there. Now we just need to make Michal understand that calling of the car's heart is something you need to listen to...