Saturday, September 24, 2011

1941 Pontiac Torpedo Woody Wagon

I don't often sell cars for other people, I prefer to own them outright, live with them awhile, get to know them.  This car however, made me break down and agree.  First off, it was for a close friend - second, he made me an offer I couldn't refuse - third, well, just look at the car.

This is a very rare '41 Pontiac Woody, one of only a handful left worldwide.  Rare when new, this car has been carefully preserved and sympathetically restored, featuring all-original wood and varnish.  In the world of woodies, originality is king, and this wagon had that in spades.  The interior had been redone in the original style, the dash artfully woodgrained, and the engine bay concours detailed.  This wagon had all the right stuff.  Sold to a real gentleman up in Seattle, after he completed much due diligence, for 85K.

1979 Mercedes 280SL

Every now and again I'll find a R107 bodied Mercedes with a manual transmission.  These are always gray market cars, only automatic transmissions were available for the US market.  These Euro 280SL's were prevalent in the early 80's and all of them here have already jumped through the required EPA and DOT hoops and have clear titles. Aside from the obvious advantages of the manual gearbox, these cars also feature European headlights and the smaller, more svelte bumpers.  More importantly, the motor is the high revving DOHC Six, so much better than the smogged out lumbering V8s for the American market.

This was a very nice example, well cared for, and something that I actually bought for myself.  I took the train to Tacoma, drove the car 3 hours back to Portland, pulled up to my house and took note of the other 4 cars parked there, and realized that no, you can't keep them all.  Sold to a dealer in Germany for $14,500.

1977 Land Crusier BJ40

I'm not really much of a 4x4 guy, but this Land Cruiser really got my attention.  49K original kilometers, RHD, original paint, and a diesel motor, this rig was just too cool!  I learned a lot before buying it by reading the very active discussion forums online relating to these Land Cruisers.  Happily, none of the pitfalls that were mentioned about these vehicles were present on this particular Land Cruiser, making it an even more rare find.  If I had acreage instead of 2500sf in the city, this little rig would have been a keeper.  Sold for 25K to an enthusiast in Utah.

1973 Triumph TR6

I look at a lot of TR6's for sale every year and pass on most of them.  The market on eBay is so flooded with them that you really have to have a stellar example to break through the pack.  For me, overdrive and a hardtop are almost a necessity, so when this nice car came up for sale and checked off all of the boxes, I knew if was going to be a winner.  Finished in classic BRG, the car had been thoughtfully restored over the years as needed and had a good mix of originality with some cosmetic freshening.   Unfortunately, on the way home from taking pictures of the car, I lost oil pressure on the freeway.  I managed to get her shut down and off the road quickly, a spun bearing ended up being the worst of it.  After $1200 and a fresh bottom end rebuild, the car was ready for sale and ended up going to a buyer in France for 20K.  I've been extremely lucky to not have experienced any major catastrophic failure or accidents in any of my cars.   If a spun bearing ends up being my worst experience, I'll take it.

1963 Buick Riviera

This is a first year Riviera with a documented 37K miles.  Aside from the incredible odometer, this particular car was ordered with almost every option available.  Rivieras were already well optioned cars standard from the factory, this one added AC, deluxe interior, leather seats, power windows and seat, power wing windows, AM-FM, tinted glass, cornering lights, remote trunk release, etc, you get the picture. The car stayed in Santa Ana, CA with the first owner for 30 years, then on to a member of the ROA club, after which I sold it for $27,600 to a Audi dealer in TN for his personal use.  The price range on these first generation Rivieras is quite wide, but I felt that this price was fair to both buyer and seller, and was proof positive that these cars, when right, are worth every bit as much as their GM brethren.

1939 Plymouth Business Coupe

This was one of those cars that you dream about finding.  Totally original, an untouched survivor.  These types of cars are the closest thing to stepping back in time.  How it managed to survive over 70 years without deterioration, modification, or mouse infestation is incredible.  This is the type of car you don't restore, to do so would actually diminish its value.  The car has an all original interior, with a pass through door to the huge trunk that gives these coupes their name.  My daily driver is a 37 Dodge business coupe and I use it like you'd use a pickup truck.  Once I was able to fit 8 tires in the trunk!  This car sold to a collector in France after spirited bidding on eBay with an ending price of $19,500.

1936 Dodge D2

This car was completely restored, frame off, every nut and bolt.  It might be considered a case of restoring the wrong car but you can't argue with the results.  Finding Mopars from this era is not always easy, so if you were looking for a super example, boy this was it.  Very unusual to find a sedan restored to this level, and bone stock at that.  Sold at the very modest price of 19K to an enthusiast in Colorado.