It was called the Small Car Company. But for several years in the late 1960s, the Westport dealership sold more Volkswagens than any other in the US.
The Small Car Company was a Post Road West landmark from the ’60s through the early ’80s. It later became Dragone Classic Motorcars. Today it’s Carvana — the used car dealer selling entirely online — and if that doesn’t say something about yesterday and today, I don’t know what does.
The Small Car Company lives on, though, as SmallCarCompany.org — which also shows how the world has evolved. The brainchild of former Westporters Tom Truitt and Dave Abelow, they’re an informal group of vintage VW and Porsche owners who meet to share their passion, trade information, and host driving rallies and shows.
The club’s shows raise awareness — and funds — for local needs. Their focus is on youngsters in underserved areas who are interested in cars, but lack the resources to be introduced to automobile dealers and classic car owners.
Working with the Piston Foundation — a national organization — they help make connections.
This spring, for example, the Small Car Company brought 30 students from Bridgeport’s Bullard-Havens Technical High School’s auto technology program to the Malcolm Pray Achievement Center in Bedford, New York (including its private 4-story garage filled with classic autos), and then to a meeting with vintage repair mechanics.
Curran Volkswagen in Stratford — a dealership with Westport roots — has promised to hire some of the students from the program.
On October 9, the Small Car Company’s 7th annual Air-Cooled Classic Car Show & Fun(d) Raiser is set for Veterans Green.
Bullard-Havens’ students and teachers will be there.
The week after, the Small Car Company will be back, as part of the Westport Downtown Association’s Westoberfest. showing off their classic cars and raising even more funds for youngsters who just need a bit of help to begin fulfilling careers.
Plenty of Westporters own Porsches, and other very cool (and air-cooled) cars. We’ve got plenty of vintage car owners and collectors too. For more information on the Small Car Company — and the chance to drive forward a new generation of youngsters looking for guidance, apprenticeships and a foothold in that fascinating world — email [email protected]
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