A valued family member

EN22mottre1.jpg ... John Tremaine of Mandeville with the Chevrolet that has been in the family for 78 years.

Well known for his love of cars, John Tremaine, of Mandeville, is adamant the 1927 Chevrolet Capital will never leave the family.

The 94-year-old car was bought by the Tremaine family from a neighbour back in 1943, and at that time, used sparingly, Mr Tremain said.

“Back in the day there was no power, no hot water and vehicles were still a rarity, as horses were mostly used.

“My grandparents would have driven it into town for groceries on occasion, but they did make a lot themselves, as everyone would have back then.”

For many years the car was stored in a shed on blocks until, in 1973, John’s father got the car out to paint and re-upholster it, to be used for his daughter’s wedding car.

” After that, dad drove it in a lot of Gore Vintage Car rallies all over Southland.

” The Chev was left to my sister who lived in Tauranga and stayed with her until our mother passed.

” I retrieved the car from her, and repainted, rechromed the bumpers and put it back on the road.”

The car has a four-cylinder motor. The brakes operated on only two wheels, which was becoming obsolete, as Ford came out around the same time with four-wheel brakes, Mr Tremain said.

“There may be one or two in the country of this era.

“It’s been in the family 78 years and I have no intention of letting it go. It is a family heirloom.

“Ninety-four-years-old and still ticking along. You don’t get many like that,” Mr Tremaine said.