Since we've been discussing all kinds of older cars here, this seems to be an appropriate place to dump this little diversion. The link below is interesting, it lists the numbers of survivors of cars like Allegros, Cortinas and Marinas etc, among many others. I'd take some of the figures with a pinch of salt, as a couple of popular-at-the-time vehicles I looked up aren't listed at all, but it's illuminating all the same.http://honestjohn.cr...7F290B8E8FDC6A0
What is especially gratifying is the number of some of the better vehicles that survive, the late ACBC would be cheered in his grave to learn that the Elan is the most survivable classic of all, with an almost unbelievable 38% of all those turned out, no fewer than 3361 cars, still being around today. In second place is the Triumph Stag on about 25% , presumable most with inherent head gasket problems now solved, but it's sad to see how rare examples of other notable cars are. I always had a longing for an Alfa Six, a neighbour had one that I coveted, and I think it was one of Bill Boddy's favourites, he ran one as his main transport for several years. Once you start digging through the link, it's sometimes surprising what you discover, who would have guessed that 291 Allegros are still on four wheels, but only three Chrysler/Talbot Horizons.
Incidentally, when I used the words "survivable classic" for the Elan, I didn't mean that in the context of driving into things. Improving the car's side-impact protection was one of the things I was responsible for in my time at Lotus. What we ended up with was something like a twisted wire coathanger tacked inadequately onto the inside of each door skin, we couldn't bond it in properly, as distortion showed on the outer surface, hopelessly inadequate, but apparently it was good enough in the opinion of whichever Government Agency looked at such things. If anyone side-swiped a tree with one of those cars, the tree wouldn't stop until it hit the central backbone chassis, and given the metal thickness of those, possibly not even then, but as the saying goes, "Dead men tell no tales".