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From the Pugilist

My First Pug
Lovestruck at a Wedding
Wally Best

The love affair with Peugeot started when June and I attended my wife's brother's wedding in 1967.  One of the guests owned a near-new 1966 404 sedan and this car took my interest straight away.  I asked a few questions about Peugeots and, from the responses I received, I was hooked.

From that day on I had to buy a Peugeot 404.  I joined the RAAF and was posted to the Newcastle area, RAAF Williamtown.  I spotted a 1968 Peugeot 404 in a car yard in Maitland.  After parting with $2,700, the family and I were on our way home in this French car.

June and I drove the Peugeot 404 everywhere, including our first trip to Noosa and back home to see our folks in South Australia that year.

We were posted to Darwin in 1976, so I packed the car and trailer to near overloaded, put the dog in the car with the kids, the cat in a box in the trailer because there was no extra space, and took off for Darwin.

Along the way we had a small amount of trouble just out of Mackay with a badly leaking top radiator hose, which we bound with tape several times to get us to Townsville.  The rest of the trip was incident free.

About a year after arriving in Darwin, we bought our second Peugeot, which was a 1974 Peugeot 504 GL auto.  June and I drove this car all over Australia, including two trips through the centre to Adelaide—and that was when the road was dirt from the Northern Territory border to Port Augusta.

The auto was always a little sluggish so when the opportunity arose I replaced the old GL engine with a TI engine and also the auto with a manual box.  Now the car felt and drove like a real Pug!

I drove the Peugeot 504 for eight years and now we thought a change was due, so when a Peugeot 604 was advertised in The Pugilist for a reasonable price we had to have a look.

The Peugeot 604 has been with us now for 15 years and with a few modifications has given us great service.  This car has never let us down and now have travelled widely throughout eastern Australia, including Tasmania in the "Plastic Fantastic", as a bearded member from the Canberra club calls the car.  An LPG conversion and electric central locking has been two changes I have also performed on the Peugeot 604.

During the time I have owned the 604, June and I have also been the owners of several other Pugs, including a 505 STI which we drove to Western Australia three years ago.  We have also purchased a couple of 504s, two 404s, one which I fixed up for my youngest son to drive around.  We now only drive the 604.

I have been a member of the NSW car club for the past 19 years, then Craig Feutrill and I started the Peugeot Car Club of SA in 1993.  I am now a life member of the PCCSA.  I hope this will inspire members and readers will write in and tell us of THEIR Pug stories.

Wally's Peugeot 604 has since been sold to Gary Ruben, the president of the South Australian club, in 2004.

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Last Updated Feb 25 2004