Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Cars enhance the beauty at the Fontanel

With lush, green trees, rolling hills, and a burbling creek, the Fontanel in Whites Creek is one of the prettiest places in the Nashville area. It’s even better on Thursdays, because they hold their weekly Concert Car Cruise out on the lawn. The weather was a little cool and overcast last week, so the cruise only drew in about 20 cars. That’s an anomaly though, because usually they bring in 100 cars or more. Nevertheless, it was a nice night to eat at the Italian restaurant, enjoy the beautiful scenery, and check out the cars that were there.

Here’s a 1965 Plymouth Belvedere II. Chrysler didn’t have any fancy color names here—this one is white with a black interior. These were Plymouth’s intermediate offerings, so they would compete with something like a Chevy Chevelle or Ford Fairlane. This looked like a pretty decent little car; something you could enjoy driving or taking to a cruise like this. It had some modern Torque Thrust wheels, but the old 318-c.i. V8 still lived under the hood. This car had a dealer tag and was for sale. The first $16,000 takes it home.

When it comes to common hot rod fodder, I believe the 1940 Ford is one of the best looking cars a guy can build. I mean, look at this bright red DeLuxe coupe right here. Did they ever make something with more perfect lines? This one looked like a cruiser, with modern wheels and Michelin rubber, tinted windows, and that sub-framed stance. I would suspect that there is more late-model hardware under this sculpted skin than components bolted on here 75 years ago. But who wouldn’t want a car like this?  A car that looks this good that can be used every day is a hard combination to beat.

I’ve focused on this ’71 Pontiac Catalina convertible before, but it’s definitely worth a second look. The color is Cumberland Blue with a white interior. There is a 400-c.i. Pontiac engine under that long hood. This is a very nice, low-mileage car, and actually very unusual. Sure, people restore and/or preserve 1971 Pontiacs. But they’re usually GTOs or Firebirds. A slick, full-sized cruiser like this is pretty hard to find. When they were new, more people would walk into a Pontiac dealership looking for something like this than one of those hot rods. I love these big beasts. You get the full-on old car experience, but you get to be comfortable doing it.

This isn’t a bad looking ’68 Chevelle two-door hardtop. I believe this one is Island Teal with a Medium Teal vinyl bench seat interior. I actually kind of like the bench seat in there. You see a lot of these with buckets, but there’s something sort of nostalgic and inviting about that full-width sofa. Under the hood, it had a chromed-out Chevy small-block with aftermarket air conditioning. But most of this car looked really straight and original. The fact that it hasn’t been turned in to a fake SS with a big block is miracle unto itself. This was one of my favorite cars at the cruise.

This is actually my Summit White 2012 Camaro RS. I’ve had it for about two years now, and even though I’ve never written about it before, it’s one of the best cars I’ve ever owned. I realize that a V8 SS is cooler, but I was in the market for a commuter when I purchased this, and it does not disappoint. It has a 3.6-liter (217-c.i.), direct-injected V6, good for 323-hp. That’s more than most top-of-the-heap muscle cars just a few years ago. The only complaint I have about it is that I wish it sounded meaner. It still turns heads and gets a lot of compliments, though. As a good, reliable car wrapped in an aggressive package, these Camaros are hard to beat.

I took 70 pictures from Thursday night’s Fontanel Concert Cruise. Check them out in the slideshow below, or click this link for a nicer version.


  1. Once again, a great presentation, Craig. I especially liked your White Camaro with a V6. My brother in law, Jock Miller has the same car in dark blue. He loves it as well. The Nashville area seems to have some great car shows. Thanks again...............Roger G Grotewold Motor Co. Larchwood, Iowa

  2. Nice show, nice pics