Car: 1966 Beaumont SD Convertible
In 1965 I purchased my first convertible; a one year old ’64 Chevelle Malibu. From that point on I was hooked on having a convertible. Unfortunately the Malibu was a six cylinder with a three speed column shift. It sure didn’t have the power to blow your hat off so after a year of cruising in the Malibu I thought that it was time to look for another convertible with a little more “get up and go”!
I was living in Kamloops in the BC interior and headed down to Vancouver to visit some friends and relatives and to take some time to “kick a few tires” at the many car lots. I was on the lookout for a convertible!
I had visited several dealerships and had no success finding what I wanted. My last stop took me to Bowell McLean Motors on Broadway. I was looking through the lot when a salesman approached. I explained what I was looking for; there was nothing like this on the lot, however, he came back in a few minutes to tell me that there was a new convertible sitting at the holding lot. It had just arrived by train from Oshawa and was waiting to be prepped and brought to the new car show room. The salesman must have thought that I was a serious young man, so off we went to see the car. As we entered the compound I spotted the Beaumont convertible; it looked great even though it needed to be cleaned after its long train ride. The Aztec Bronze paint was covered in dust! We headed over for a closer inspection; interior was white buckets with console! Just what I wanted!
As we were discussing the features of the car, a worker from the unloading compound arrived on the scene; the worker was my father! I knew that he worked there but I was surprised to see him. My Dad asked the salesman “how he knew the car was here”. According to Dad, it shouldn’t have been on any sales list as it was destined for showroom display. I thought, this is my lucky day! It wasn’t too long before the two of us were negotiating with the salesman. I can still remember my father telling the salesman that he had better sharpen his pencil . The price finally came in at $3750.00; which was within my price range, albeit on the high side! I purchased the Aztec Bronze Beaumont SD convertible on July 19th 1966 and I still own the car today!
The 283 has been rebuilt twice; it has had three paint jobs; two convertible tops; and one upholstery update over the close to 40 years that have gone by since I purchased it. Some other memorable happenings for the Beaumont were a damaged right front fender when I lost control on black ice in the winter of ’84; damaged left front fender in ’97 when a deer bolted from the woods and ran straight into the fender also damaging the headlight moulding and grille. This was quite an experience for my grandson who was a passenger in the Beaumont. Also in ’97 (it wasn’t a good year for the Beaumont) a large tree branch fell and literally shredded the “rag top”. I was out on the golf course and was quite devastated when I returned to the parking lot to find the branch inside the Beaumont. The golf course offered to pay for the damages.
In 2003 I had some restoration work done on the Beaumont that included a shiny new Aztec Bronze paint job! The Beaumont now looks like it did when I first drove it off the lot of Bowell McLean Motors almost forty years ago.
I now take the car off the road for the winter months but enjoy driving it during the spring and summer by attending numerous car related events.
Dave and Karen’s ’66 Beaumont is equipped with the following
- Option Codes Description
- Buckets A51
- Convertible Top C06
- Console D55
- Power Brakes J50
- Powerglide M35
- Power Steering N40
- Wheel Covers P01
- Radio U63