We love great restoration stories, especially this one. It’s a little different than your average restoration. Imagine what being reunited with your dream car feels like. Enjoy the twists and turns. It all begins on a visit to Vancouver.
A new Cougar featured in 1967 was called the Eliminator. Harry Unruh couldn’t get his mind to stop thinking about this car. So it became his goal to own one. However he was a student majoring in electronics at BCIT. He didn’t let his student loan affect his plans to purchase his dream car. So he made a visit to George Black Motors to view the brochures.
Harry informed the salesman that upon his graduation a job at IBM, in two months, would be waiting. They made a deal. He would trade in his 1962 Ford Falcon and receive a loan, payment free for three months. Harry went with his girlfriend 6 weeks later to pick up their Augusta Green Cougar. However it was the base model with the powerful 289-cubic-inch engine and four-barrel carburetor.
After the couple married, they drove the new car to Prince Rupert. Harry began working as system engineer at the pulp mill. The chemicals from the mill began doing damage to the Cougar. Pits began to develop in the chrome.
The New Cougar
The most recent issue of Hot Rod magazine, January 1969, arrived. The newest Cougar owned the cover. It was a Competition orange 1969 Eliminator. This car equipped with an impressive hood scoop, front and rear spoilers, custom wheels, and lastly racing stripes. Additional performance packages were available.
The couple drove past Black Motors on their way to Vancouver they noticed that exact car from the magazine cover on their showroom floor. This proved to be a life changing moment for Harry and Marlene. Fifteen minutes went by and the old Cougar became a trade in for the Eliminator with a difference of $2,500.
They returned to Prince Rupert in need of some car repair which took one year to complete. So a technician from Vancouver completed the repairs because the locals had never seen an Eliminator.
The couple settled and started a family in 1974. It was time to sell his dream. Harry sold it to a gentleman purchasing it for his grandson for $2,300. However it wasn’t too long before they heard the news. The new owner wrecked the Cougar and it became a total loss. Therefore Harry couldn’t stop thinking about the car over the years and regretted selling such a rare find.
Harry retired and began looking for a restoration project. He came across an Eliminator out of his price range so he kept looking. Finally he came across the same Cougar he purchased new. However the likelihood that it was available was slim. He received a response and the car was still for sale. After a few conversations with owner and comparisons they discovered this was his original purchase forty years ago.
Harry hired a local company to handle the from the ground up project. They completed the job after about two years. The result went above and beyond the expectations and the budget he had planned. The car had serious damage so he expected high costs.
This is a happy ending for Harry, Marlene, and their Cougar. They enjoy the occasional car show and some classic afternoon cruises.