Classic Cars Were Charged By the Model Year at L.A. Gas Station Last Week
Call it Flashback Friday, gas price-style.
Remember the good old days, when gas was cheap and the roads were empty? Pepperidge Farm remembers. So does Hagerty Insurance. As a tribute to those days of yore, the insurance company gave a few classic car owners in California a chance to top off their tanks at throwback prices last Friday, in honor of the seventh annual Collector Car Appreciation Day.
Taking over the classic 76 gas station in Beverly Hills, Hagery transformed the swooping structure into an old-fashioned service station. Roll up in your '32 Ford hot rod or classic Camaro, and you'd first be treated to some old-fashioned carhop-style service.
No more fiddling with your PIN and waiting for the glassed-in attendant to authorize the pump; at Hagerty's time warp of a gas station, it's full service, 1950s style. Hits from the '50s and '60s played on jukeboxes, while attendants dressed up in Eisenhower-era uniforms washed windows and monitored the levels of crucial fluids. Check the oil, mister?
But the particularly inspired move showed its face when it came time to pay up: The cost of each driver's fuel was whatever the average gasoline price was when his or her car first his the road. The owner of one 1970 Ford Mustang, for example, paid 70 cents a gallon to top off his tank. A guy in a '55 Chevy Bel Air, meanwhile, shelled out just 29 cents a gallon.
Sure, fuel prices are pretty low these days—adjusted for inflation, in fact, gas is cheaper today than it was back when those Bel Airs and early Mustangs were rolling off assembly lines—but there's still nothing quite like the thrill of filling up your gas tank and still getting change back from a $10 bill. And gimmick or not, any occasion that gives people an excuse to roll out their classic cars and go cruising is fine by us.