This 1937 Ford Is a High School Hauler
There’s something incredible about driving a flathead Ford, and this particular car demonstrates it perfectly. It’s not a fast car—to be honest, it’s anything but. It’s not particularly luxurious, or refined, or comfortable. It doesn’t blow your mind through the corners, and driving it in fast traffic can be straight-up terrifying. With all that said, it’s still one of my all-time favorite drives, for the simple reason that driving an early V8 Ford reminds me (perhaps more than any other car) that I am piloting a living, breathing machine. Everything I see, everything I touch, and everything I hear has texture. It’s an supremely tactile experience that newer, more refined cars seem to hide from their drivers. There’s an absolute symphony of mechanical noise every time I pull away from a stoplight or round a corner. The engine itself crackles and growls as it climbs the stubby rev range. Not violently—just enough to remind me it’s there. The transmission whirrs softly as the worn synchro slides into second. The seat springs groan in protest as I take a corner a little too hard, and the giant Bakelite wheel shudders to let me know I'm taking things too seriously.
That’s just the tip of the iceberg, really. There are ten thousand little sounds, smells, and tactile sensations that accompany this car on a drive. I would expect it to get annoying, but it never does. It just deepens the connection between the machine driven by oil and gears and pistons; and the one driven by blood, nerves, and the occasional ham sandwich.
If the idea of all these little noises and feelings doesn’t appeal to you, fine. There are plenty of cars out there for you, and almost all of them make better day-to-day commuters than the ’37 Ford from a purely pragmatic perspective. But for some of us, there’s no substitute.
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