HomeCar CultureMy Classic Car: 1957 Dodge Royal

My Classic Car: 1957 Dodge Royal

A nice surprise


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Back in 1978 I got a call from my dad’s friend who knew I was into Mopars. A woman he had roomed with in college was about to enter a nursing home, and she had to sell a 1957 Dodge. He asked me if I would be interested; the car had 15,000 actual miles and she wanted $500 for it. The woman and her husband bought the car new, but he died in 1958 and she didn’t drive. Out of reverence to her departed husband, she refused to sell the car until her health issues forced her to downsize.

Wayne’s 1957 Dodge Royal

Of course I was interested in one with that low mileage. I made the assumption it would be a 4 door sedan with a 6-cylinder motor and automatic, I mean, older people just don’t buy high powered flashy cars…or do they? A time and day was made to meet with the woman to see the car. We pulled up to an older 40’s style bungalow and “Emma” came out to meet us and show us the car.
She refused help to get the sagging garage door open, but it finally gave way. There stood a car that had not seen the light of day in 20 years. Instead of the spartan 4 door sedan I was expecting sat a two-tone painted 2 door hardtop! It sported twin rear mounted antennas, dual side mirrors and those beautiful Lancer hubcaps. The best part was a badge on the trunk lid that stated it had the d-500 hemi option. I was beginning to think I had heard wrong about the price. I turned to Emma and asked her how much she wanted for the car.

She took a step back and shaking a finger she replied, “Young man, I want $500, not a penny more, not a penny less!”
I handed her the 5 $100 bills I had in my pocket and she left to get the title. Now 45 years later, I still own that car and it just turned 36k miles!

Wayne M., Colorado



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