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Hot Springs, Arkansas’ A-Auto & Truck lives up to their claim that they “love autos and trucks.” In particular, the older iron.

By Leroy Dritler

A bony 6-inch tree has snaked its way between the back of the hood and the cowl of this ’67 Chevrolet. It is at least 20 feet to the first scrawny limb. The Chevy still has the rarely seen front fender running lamps.

The slogan on the business card of A-Auto & Truck owner Ken Huchingson states, “We Love Autos & Trucks.” That slogan could truthfully be amended by adding the word “old,” because there are plenty of oldies saved in the Hot Springs, Ark., yard. During our visit, Huchingson said he had 200 to 300 vehicles remaining in his 10-acre yard, most of them dating from the early 1950s to early 1980s. Huchingson has been in business at this location for the past 35 years.

When driving by on the highway, it appears the business has been abandoned. There are several “No Trespassing” signs tacked to posts and trees, and the entrance gates are shut. There are four or five old cars and one old tractor parked in view, but the rest are hidden by brush, trees and old buildings and mobile homes. Huchingson is getting up in years and says he is only open by appointment. He is in the process of crushing all the “junk” since the price of scrap metal has increased, but wants to sell as many of the good oldies as soon as possible for parts cars or restoration projects. No parts can be removed from any vehicle, so if you need parts, you’ll have to buy the whole vehicle. Huchingson doesn’t arrange shipping, so you’ll need to take care of those details.

The fender badge on this 1966 Mustang shows it had a 289 V-8, but the engine is gone. The car has rusty floors and quarters.

The yard has the same problem as many yards with uncontrolled brush, vines, briars and trees. Some of the vehicles are completely surrounded by dense vegetation, making it hard to see what kind of car or truck is actually there, and what kind of condition it is in. If you visit after a rain, as we did, wear boots, because the access roads are rutted and muddy with poor drainage.

Most of the cars and trucks in the yard are American, but there are a few foreign makes scattered about. We saw several VW bugs, a few Toyota cars and trucks, an old Subaru and others. Protected from the elements, inside of a building, are two or three mini-pickups along with a huge ’63 Cadillac Biarritz convertible. We noticed three, or maybe four, old derelict wreckers, and a few bigger trucks in the yard. The oldest vehicle we saw was a 1946-’47 Ford 1-1/2-ton truck. There’s probably a dozen or so first-generation Mustangs, and at least a half-dozen Tri-Five Chevys. In some sections of the yard, vehicles are squeezed in tight, making it tough to open doors to inspect the interiors, or even to walk between them.

Powered by a V-6 engine, this 1984 Chevy Monte Carlo is equipped with power windows and air conditioning.

As we walked by a couple of MoPar coupes, Huchingson mentioned thieves had made off with the hood scoops. Stealing has been a problem, so now a dog is on the premises. Browsing is not allowed without permission.

To make an appointment to see the vehicles, Huchingson can be reached by phone. He does not text or email, and does not have a Facebook page or website.

A-Auto & Truck
4020 Albert Pike (mail)
Hot Springs, AR 71913

We haven’t come across many of these Opel Kadett station wagons in the yards we visited, so if you need a parts car, here’s your chance.
This Mustang II is a standard shift and still has its engine. There’s another one in the bushes nearby.
This 1971 Chevy Caprice had, as standard equipment, a 400-cid V-8 engine, but the one in this car has been removed, along with the transmission and air conditioning components.
The 1967 Galaxie 500XL is the sport version of the full-size Ford fastback body style, and came standard with an automatic transmission. The console and bucket seats remain.
Surrounded by oldies is a 1967 Dodge Coronet six-passenger station wagon with a V-8 engine and automatic transmission. There is a Buick Riviera right behind it.
There are many good trim pieces and other parts on this 1956 Pontiac Sport Coupe, but it does have rusty floors.
Just over 7,000 Pontiac Bonneville convertibles were sold in 1968, and here’s one of them.
Fender badges show this 1970 Pontiac hardtop came from the factory with a 455-cid engine.
This 1969 Chevelle Malibu hardtop came from the factory with a 350-cid V-8 engine, but the engine and transmission are gone.
This 1960 Ford F-100 work truck with a step-side bed was once painted orange. It has a column-mounted three-speed shifter.
There are a couple of Falcon Econoline vans in the yard. The other one is a window van.
We saw several Chevy trucks from 1947 to 1953, but this is the only five-window we spotted. It has rusty cab corners and floor pans.
Huchingson thinks this old Chevy is a 1952 or ’53 model. The inline six-cylinder engine is still there. It has a built-in sink, a bed and a window air conditioner that protrudes from the driver’s side.
When the Volkswagen 411 luxury sedan was built, it was the company’s largest passenger car with the company’s largest air-cooled engine. This model was built from 1968-’72. In ’69, it had the same engine as a Porsche 914. Standard equipment included front disc brakes and an automatic transmission. Some referred to it as VW’s “ugly duckling.”
This 1957 Chevy 3100 pickup is resting on a rack to keep it off the ground. It has some rust issues, and several parts have been removed.
We couldn’t get very close to this Oldsmobile Holiday coupe, because of brush, junk and water. We could see by the badges on the hood and fender it’s a 4-4-2 model. The back wheels are resting on a car dolly.
There were just over 20,000 Two-Ten four-door hardtops made by Chevrolet in 1956 compared to almost 104,000 Bel Air four-door hardtops. The reason more people bought the plushier Bel Air might have been because of a price difference of only $113.
The oldest vehicle we noticed is this 1946-’47 Ford truck.
Huchingson said he drove this 1963 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz into the building and parked it. A few years ago, an interested person was going to buy it and ship it to Germany, but the deal fell through. It’s available and deserves to be saved.
The first time we walked by this big-block SS ’68 Chevelle, we didn’t notice it. It is parked in a thicket between two other Chevelles. Huchingson said he set it up on tires and wheels to keep it out of the dirt.
The first time we walked by this big-block SS ’68 Chevelle, we didn’t notice it. It is parked in a thicket between two other Chevelles. Huchingson said he set it up on tires and wheels to keep it out of the dirt.
Huchingson refers to this 1969 GTO as a “Blinky-eyed Goat.” The interior, engine and transmission are gone.
There were 8,700 Dodge Demons manufactured in 1972. Standard was a 340-cid High-Performance V-8 engine with a four-barrel carburetor.

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