When we contacted Larry Bogel about his 1967 Chevelle, you could tell from the tone of his voicemail that he really loved his Malibu. As he made his introductions, he lovingly referred to it as his “glorious ’67 Chevelle”. His description was full of adoration, without a speck of undue pride or self-aggrandizement. Even though the car was in Larry’s own words, “a driver”, the presence of an occasional stone chip or parking lot rash didn’t fade his appreciation over the 26 years that he’d owned the Chevy. And what a car it was!
While some seek out uber-expensive or ultra-rare versions of mid-’60s autos, Larry had a different focus when he was looking for a car. He wanted one he could drive and enjoy. Reliability was given from the very first drip of fuel that flowed into the two-barrel-equipped 283 ci engine with 195 horsepower. The car provided everything that Larry could have wanted, including the soothing sound of a good running small-block Chevy that can only be had through a dual exhaust. Which by the way, was really the only modification that Larry ever did to the car.
When Larry first purchased the A-Body, it only had 69,000 miles on the odometer. He described it as a, “very solid and straight car with very few mechanical issues.” Over time and with the help of other knowledgeable individuals, Larry pampered his pride and joy with the necessary paint and upholstery needs to bring it back to factory-fresh status.
Larry proudly explains that he never trailered the car, which is a tribute to the character and reliability of both he and the car. Over the tenure of Larry’s ownership, he racked up another 85,000 miles on the odometer.
Living in Novato, California, gave Larry plenty of opportunity to get the car out and go for a ride. He held that the fun is in driving, and always enjoyed doing so when the opportunity allowed. “I always got a lot of very nice comments when I had the car out.”
At some point, the sound of adoration faded into a somber recollection of fond memories, as Larry explained he recently sold the car. We first saw Larry’s Chevelle at a Goodguys event, and between then and when we contacted him for information about his car, he had to relinquish ownership. Larry confided that he thought long and hard about whether to sell the car that gave him so much enjoyment and asked so little from him.
Larry said, “I’m getting a few miles on myself. I have a ’68 Chevy pickup that I enjoy, and I don’t need two big toys. I just thought I’d enjoy the hobby more with one, rather than two.” He came to grips with putting the car up for sale, and he immediately received several low-ball offers. The problem with trying to purchase a car from such a satisfied owner, is that he’s just as happy to hold onto the car as you would be obtaining it. Larry admits he wasn’t in a hurry to sell, and waded through the attempts to snatch the car from him grasp.
Eventually, he found the right purchaser, and the gentleman and his father flew up from their home in southern California. Larry could tell that they appreciated the car the same way he has for the past 26 years. He even felt good about the new owners as he said, “And they drove it home!”
We’ve all been there. Looking back with fond memories, seasoned with regret over the one that got away. Do you have a story that you would like to share? Let us and our readers know about it, and if you can, feel free to share some photos! We know there are many stories just like Larry’s and we’d love to hear yours, so e mail us at [email protected].