If you’re from Colorado, chances are you know of the string of car dealerships throughout the state under the name Phil Long. Maybe you don’t think about the business, it’s success, and the owners who continue to make it successful. You mostly just know the name, where it is in Colorado Springs, and you know that if you ever need a car, this dealer is your option. But unless you’re buying a vehicle, who is even keeping the dealership on their radar?
Colorado Springs is a rather large city, but small enough of a community to know that there are great people out there, making a difference, and people we should be proud of. And many of those people we should be proud of, are the local business owners who have continued to be the backbone of our community. So, who are the owners behind the name Phil Long and what are they up to in the Colorado community? Why are we even talking about them today?
Jay Cimino is the owner of all Phil Long dealers and alongside him is his son, and VP, Mike Cimino. If you have ever had the pleasure of meeting a Cimino, you will find they are some of the kindest people in the world. You may know them if you ever watch the TV series, My Classic Car with Dennis Gage. Dennis Gage has been filming episodes since 1997 and even had the pleasure of hosting Mr. Jay Leno on his show shortly after Mike Cimino.
Mike is the first of the Phil Long leaders to appear on the My Classic Car show and spent a day’s worth of time showing off two of his most prized classic vehicles, the 1976 Toyota Land Cruiser and the 1974 Ford Bronco. With Ford’s announcement of the reemerging 2020 Ford Bronco, it seems only right that Mike showcased his Bronco along with the Land Cruiser.
In the My Classic Car episode, Dennis Gage, and his rad silvery mustache took both vehicles for a spin after Mike took a minute to explain each vehicle in all their glory.
He started first with the bright yellow Toyota Land Cruiser FJ40 with the white. This vehicle didn’t become a product of the automotive market until 1996. The vehicle was manufactured during the Korean War, and although it is an old model, it sure doesn’t look old. Cimino opted for a few modern-day modifications, like adding a different cluster, but in essence left the vehicle looking as authentic as possible. Cimino kept most all of the OEM parts but lifted the Land Cruiser an extra 6-inches and added the 5280 Warner Winch on the front bumper. One of the most eye-pleasing parts of this vehicle is the rolled glass windows on the back end, which you don’t see on just any vehicle. Gage and Cimino took this one for a ride through the neighborhood on a bright and sunny day. With Colorado’s Pikes Peak in the background and the lush greenery alongside the road, this was the perfect day for a short drive.
The last car of the day was the 1974 Ford Bronco, which could be known as Cimino’s water-proof vehicle. This car is hot just like Cimino’s collection of muscle cars, partly because of the 2008 Z06 Corvette Atomic Orange paint job. Everything in the vehicle is meant to be simply hosed down if it gets dirty, which means everything is waterproof, including his speakers and sound system. He would have no problem taking this vehicle out for a bit of off-roading. Cimino also felt the need to preserve this vehicle as well, although he did ad a cluster and a 4-inch roll-cage to it. All these modifications made this vehicle one of a kind.
Mike was the first to complete his My Classic Car episode, and Jay in soon to follow with episodes airing at the beginning of March. To see more information about the upcoming episodes, visit here. There is also more information about both of these beautiful vehicles and their fancy engines online at Phil Long. You can read the whole story and even watch the video, go here.