Road trip with foreign visitors
No tech question here--just a nice road trip memory.
I've put 37,000 miles on my '95 FWB in 2.5 years. The last big trip was this summer. Part business meetings, part fun. Drove from South Carolina to Chicago, then Detroit and back and forth around Michigan. I had two friends with me from Sweden and Turkey. They chuckled when they first saw my white boat, but after 3000 miles in 2 weeks they really understood the appeal. Both of them drove it a lot, but neither one wanted to drive it in city traffic or park it in garages. On the highway they loved it (the on-ramps were fun, too, haha). Me, I loved having a chance to chill in the back seat. It was like being a little kid again in my parents' 67 LeSabre.
They were surprised that at a steady 75 mph we got 22-23 miles a gallon with three people, a trunk full of luggage, and AC. At least when I was driving. They had heavy feet. I would wake up and we'd be rolling along at 90. In their countries gas costs about $11 a gallon, so it was good to be in America, the land of cheap gas.
At first they laughed at me for having a couple of road atlases in the trunk, but the GPS wasn't very useful when some on-ramps were closed in the middle of Detroit. A minute of old-fashioned map-reading and problem solved. Maps and Fleetwoods may be old-school, but they work like they are supposed to.
This car is at its best on the Interstate with hundreds of miles to go. Acres of room, the view over the hood, and the cushy FE1 soft ride suspension made a great new experience for my friends. The car looks brand new and I have rebuilt the steering, suspension, cooling, and ignition. Didn't have a single problem.
Did some cool car things--went to the Henry Ford Museum, visited a big car cruise in Detroit. We spent the 4th of July in the small lakefront town of Port Austin, Michigan. Parade with fire trucks, Model Ts, and this year's Bean Queen on a float, and sitting on the grass watching fireworks on the harbor breakwater, a real Main Street USA kind of day.
The Fleetwood was the perfect relaxed cruiser for this trip. It wouldn't have been the same in a smaller car, an SUV, or a minivan. I'm really glad I got to show them the traditional big-car American summer roadtrip experience.