Robert Fick’s 1995 Ford Bronco Eddie Bauer was supposed to be at this week’s Autorama. He said he restored it somewhat to the original condition, with a 351 engine. The 2021 edition of Autorama has been canceled.

Robert Fick’s 1995 Ford Bronco Eddie Bauer was supposed to be at this week’s Autorama. He said he restored it somewhat to the original condition, with a 351 engine. The 2021 edition of Autorama has been canceled.

Photo provided by Robert Fick


‘It’s great father and son bonding time’

Macomb Township family shares enthusiasm for cars

By: Alex Szwarc | Macomb Township Chronicle | Published April 26, 2021

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Editor’s note: Interviews were conducted for this story prior to the April 20 announcement that the Detroit Autorama has been canceled. Event organizers indicate they are fully committed to returning to the TCF Center in 2022.

MACOMB TOWNSHIP — Time spent working on automotive projects with his dad is something Bryan Fick doesn’t regret.

Originally, the plan was for a number of local residents to show off their hot rods and customs at Autorama. That was until the April 20 announcement that the 69th Annual Detroit Autorama, which was scheduled to proceed on April 30-May 2, has been canceled.

Fick, along with his dad Robert, of Macomb Township, were set to each bring a car to the show — for Robert, a 1995 Ford Bronco Eddie Bauer, and for Bryan, a 1989 BMW 325is.

Robert, 57, purchased his Bronco in Wisconsin about five years ago with about 118,000 miles. Robert is a paid on-call Macomb Township firefighter who also works as a nurse at McLaren Macomb in Mount Clemens.

“It was in pretty good condition, and I restored it somewhat to original with a 351 engine in it,” he said. “It’s red and tan. What they did back then was a top-level deluxe edition with Eddie Bauer. It’s an automatic 4x4 with a little more accessories inside.”

The family Robert bought it from also lived in Florida, which he says helped with its condition.

“I replaced the quarter panel and the tailgate, which was rusted on the bottom, and rebuilt the engine,” he said. “The engine was pulled out. I reassembled it and put it back in.”

Robert said the Bronco, the second he has owned, has its original seats and that the interior didn’t need a whole lot of work.

“I had another ’95 Eddie Bauer out of Florida, which I sold,” he said. “I got totaled in a Tahoe, then thought maybe I could get my old Bronco back.”

The Bronco is not Robert’s everyday vehicle, and he’s driven about 25,000 miles with it.

“It’s more of a show car and summer vehicle,” he said. “I got a lot of looks and people give me thumbs up because they don’t see the old Bronco anymore.”

With Ford’s summer release of the 2021 Bronco, Robert said Broncos are becoming more popular once again.

Bryan, a junior at Northwood University, is taking the dark blue and white BMW to Autorama on behalf of the school’s Aftermarket Club.

“It’s amazing that he’s taken an interest in automotive,” Robert said. “He’s doing a great job up there, and I’m very proud of him.”

Two years ago, Northwood students began fundraising with alumni to purchase the car.

“It was at the AAPEX show in Vegas in 2019, and this is its second Autorama,” Bryan said. “The car was bare bones with 200,000 miles and needed a full restoration.”

The engine was taken out and redone, with students vinyl wrapping the 325is at a detailing shop, gutting the interior.

“We did all the finishing touch work and installed the body kit,” he said.

When Bryan was growing up, the two would spend plenty of time working on car projects.

“I’m kind of car crazy,” Robert said. “I used to have a ’71 Cutlass and ’70 Chevelle. For a year, I had a ’73 Corvette.”

Bryan said his father’s love of cars drove him to where he is today.

“My career will always be around the automotive industry,” Bryan said.

He said he loves the Bronco, which has been a cool project to work on with his dad.

“It’s a cool weekend project and something I would not change for the world,” he said. “It’s great father and son bonding time that you never really think about in that moment until later on in life,” Bryan said.

Autorama organizers indicate they are fully committed to returning to the TCF Center in 2022.

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