My Favorite Ride: Dad's 1968 Cougar is son's pride and joy

June 4, 2013 

The car: 1968 Mercury Cougar

The owner: Timothy Berns, Merced

1. What are the key features of your vehicle? Hideaway lights, sequential turn signals, disc brakes.

2. What did you have to do to get it in its present state? Polishing and shining were simple. It still has Dad's elbow grease. I did do the undercarriage bumper to bumper, wire-brushed, primed and painted. Most replaceable parts are new, and it has a rebuilt 302 cubic inch engine.

3. What else do you want to do to it? Replace the dashboard and fix a power steering leak.

4. How did you acquire your vehicle? Dad bought the car in the summer of 1976. I inherited it in 2008.

5. Why did you pick that particular vehicle and what do you find appealing about it? It catches your eye. Not many are left.

6. What started your love affair with cars? Each thing I came across at the end of each road.

7. What advice would you give others about starting such a project? Have a realistic budget and a willingness to communicate with like-minded people.

8. Do you have any other collector vehicles or project cars? This is my only classic. Other rides include a Toyota Tundra and two Harley-Davidsons.

9. What's your favorite memory about this ride? I feel lucky every day when I open up the garage and see my Dad's pride and joy. He spent so many hours on this car, and my childhood comes back to me. We had four Cougars in our driveway at one time. We were the Cougar family, and my high school mascot was a Cougar. It was just meant to be.

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