Reader ride: David Grimshaw’s 1969 Subaru 360
In addition to being a plain interesting car, David Grimshaw’s erstwhile 1969 Subaru 360 also comes with an unusual – cautionary? – tale. We’ll let David tell the story:
Back in 2009, through a string of really unfortunate circumstances I ended up having to drive a 1969 Subaru 360 nearly 2000 miles across the United States— from Denver, Colorado, to Savannah, Georgia. I had bought the car when I was 14, and planned to restore it but life got in the way, and this trip was basically a mad act of desperation to save from having to sell the car. It had not been driven since the 1980s and I optimistically believed that I could get it roadworthy in about a week and then simply drive it home to Georgia.
Nearly every imaginable sort of problem cropped up: the fuel line clogged with rust so the car wouldn’t accelerate past 25mph; I got caught in a thunderstorm with desiccated wiper blades and had to pull over, buy a single modern blade, and cut it in half to fit the tiny wipers on the car; the charge wire from the alternator burned up several times; the distributor stuck in the retarded position; the exhaust cracked off and had to be welded up; the passenger side suicide door flung open while exiting an interstate, etc. etc.
I’ve included a few photos I took to document the trip. In the end I arrived in Georgia to find I no longer had a job, couldn’t afford school, was being evicted, and that my girlfriend was leaving me. I sold the car shortly after, and more or less put the whole ordeal out of my mind since.
Can anyone else top this story and/or vehicle? Leave a comment below or email us.