This you Mike :-)
101-Year-Old Man Buys a 426-Horsepower Camaro
“I wanted a sportscar,” said Virgil Coffman, pictured left, who turns
102 in January. Mr. Coffman met with Ed Welburn, vice president of
global design for General Motors, on Tuesday.
Eight months older than General Motors, Virgil Coffman clearly is not
whom Chevrolet had in mind when it decided to bring back the Camaro.
But a bright yellow, 426-horsepower Camaro SS is exactly what Mr.
Coffman, who turns 102 in January, wanted when he went to a Chevy
dealership near his home in Decatur, Ill., in September. He ordered a
“Transformers” special edition model, which is adorned with black
stripes to resemble the character Bumblebee from the blockbuster movie.
Mr. Coffman hasn’t seen “Transformers.” He said he just liked how the
special-edition Camaro looked — and that only 1,500 are to be produced.
He traded in a Chevy Monte Carlo for the new car. “Driving by myself, I
didn’t need one of those big cars anymore.” he said. “I wanted a sportscar.”
After learning of Mr. Coffman’s purchase, G.M. flew him to Detroit this
week to show him around a design studio and its Heritage Center, a
museum filled with hundreds of cars it has built during his lifetime –
and, of course, get a little publicity for one of the company’s
Mr. Coffman worked for G.M. from 1950 until 1973, first making bumpers
for Cadillacs and later as a chemist. He has owned 35 to 40 different
vehicles — mostly G.M., none foreign — starting with a “1920-something”
two-door Chevy coupe. This is his first Camaro, and he says he likes it
“The way it looks and the way it handles — you can’t beat it,” he said.
“People you don’t even know come up and talk to you in a parking lot.”
Bob Lamb, a nephew who accompanied Mr. Coffman on his visit, said the
sales staff at Miles Chevrolet was a bit skeptical of a 101-year-old man
who came in looking for the $38,000 Camaro but more than happy to make
the deal when they realized he was serious. “He told me, ‘If I keep that
10 or 12 years, it will be worth about $100,000,’” Mr. Lamb said. “He’s
Since September, Mr. Coffman, who has outlived his wife and three
children, has put about 1,800 miles on his new car, though he has yet to
take it more than about 50 miles outside of Decatur. And while he loves
the powerful V-8 engine, he keeps his speed down — most of the time.
“Once in a while I like to kick it up,” he said. “But I’m afraid to
drive too fast and get a ticket, and then they might take my license away.”