Rusty But Trusty on the Street – Two Alfas, Dodge, and a GMC

Nothing deoxidizes the rusty cockles of one’s heart like seeing an older car running around on the street, particularly one that was not too common when new, and even rarer now. So it was quite a surprise seeing this well-known (to SF Bay Area Alfa nuts) 1973 Alfa Romeo Berlina parked on a side street in the Potrero Hill neighborhood of San Francisco, gathering dust. Of course, anything near a busy street tends to gather dust, and while this car is a project from outside appearances, the previous owner had done extensive work on the engine, transmission and suspension before moving out of the area. Hopefully, this car is still being used as intended – the last owner posted on online forums about flying through freeway on-ramps, so it must be in better mechanical shape.

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Next up is a late series 4 Alfa Romeo Spider. It had its fair share of parking lot door dings, which ordinarily would suggest a certain level of neglect, but when you see something like this in a city it might also just mean the owner is unafraid to use it as a daily driver. Which is really pretty cool – how many of you are daily driving an Alfa? This is the same parking garage where, due to a strange disruption in the time and space continuum, two identical Lamborghini Gallardos were parked across from each other, so clearly there’s some good juju in there.

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Next up is a 1957 Dodge sedan. The badge on the front fender appears to say Lancer, but those were typically pillarless sedans, so perhaps this is a Coronet or Royal. As usual, it’s neat to see this on the road, or as it happens, in the parking lot of a chain auto parts store.

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Finally, a 1956(ish) GMC 100 pickup truck. Who doesn’t agree that this is the best condition for a multi-decade truck? Slightly worn, faded paint, a couple minor dents here and there, but overall well-used and loved. It’s not unusual to see trucks as old as this still earning their keep in northern California, supporting gardening and construction businesses. Check out the neat little upper grill, unique to the GMC version of these pickups.

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