1963 Holden's a dream car after it's restored

Published 1:48pm 21 February 2019

1963 Holden's a dream car after it's restored
Words by Kylie Knight

When Karen Fiedler 's husband Des finished restoring his Monaro from 1969, she asked him where her historic ride was. The result ... a stunning EH Holden from 1963.

The Elimbah mother-of-three, born in 1964 was looking for a Holden from her birth year, when she found an EH Holden for sale in Gympie.

The driver, an older gentlemen, was ill, and could no longer work on the car with his son.

Karen and Des liked what they saw and while they found out that it was actually a model from 1963, they are pleased with the car they purchased that day and proud of how it looks now.

“It was the fourth EH off the production line in Adelaide. It would be one of the oldest EHs on the road,” Karen says.

Des rebuilt the chassis, sandblasting it back to bare metal, and overhauled the mechanics altogether. The car was roadworthy before Des got to work but green "valley mist" with a brown interior.

“When I first drove it, people didn’t give you respect on the road because it didn’t look any good. Now that it’s done up, you get a lot more respect,” Karen says.

After restoration was complete, they made sure the previous owner could also enjoy the transformation, driving it back to Gympie for him to see.

“He drove it in his driveway and told us he’d give us our money back,” Karen recalls.

They politely said no thank you and now enjoy driving the car to club events.

“It was the first car I remember my parents having,” she says. “It’s the car you remember from when you were young.”

Driving the EH long distances is not without its downfalls, especially if the fuel guage drops below the quarter tank mark.

“You’re not an EH owner unless you’ve run out of fuel,” Karen says, laughing.

Heading to the EJ-EH Nationals at Bathurst, they’ll be sure to fill the tank before leaving.

“It’s smooth, it’s nice to drive, it’s nice to sit in, even without airconditioning,” she says.

So, how does she feel when she’s driving with the wind in her hair?

“I feel young. You’re back in that same era when you were 16-20 years old,” she says.

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