Affordable — Ford Pickups

Pity the 1961–66 Ford F-series pickup. Despite vintage pickups being one of the hottest segments of the collectible-vehicle market, this era of pickups seems to be generally forgotten today — and that really is a pity, since they combine vintage-pickup charm with modern utility.

A cleaner Ford

The new fourth-generation trucks, introduced for 1961, had an all-new cleaner design. Compared with the previous boxy generation, the styling was smoother, more rounded and more svelte.

Part of the svelte look was Read More

Muscle on the Cheap

You want a muscle car. Here’s the problem: You only have $10k to spend.

What can you really get in today’s market for that kind of coin? Will it be a hidden gem or a problem-filled pile? Let’s explore.

Parts or whole?

First, lose those rose-colored glasses. Want a ’Cuda, first-gen Camaro or ’69 Mustang? Your best hope is a running parts car. Of course, that purchase price is just the down payment on a big stack of receipts needed Read More

Arizona’s Cheapest

Gooding & Company

Lot 62: 1927 Ford Model T Custom Dry-Lakes Roadster
VIN T14884116. Sold at $11,200

This one took a lot of folks by surprise. The auction house guesstimate was $20k to $25k. It was a good-quality build, even if it was in off-the-shelf project-leftovers territory. With a fuel-injected Chevy 305 small block, 700R4, and modern 4-wheel disc brakes, it would take that $20k estimate to build one.

It may not be the most practical hot rod out there, but Read More

Bronco: The Sequel

We still don’t have the new Ford Bronco that FoMoCo promised us at the 2017 Detroit Auto Show. But if you want a Bronco that’s more modern than the drafty rattletrap 1966–77 first-gen, maybe it’s time to consider the true successor to the original: the 1984–1990 Bronco II.

A chip off the old Ranger

Just like the eventually-to-be-released 2021-and-beyond new Bronco, the Bronco II used Ford Ranger underpinnings. This included the 2.8-L Cologne V6 (the 2.0-L and 2.3-L from the Read More

Downmarket Fun in Monterey

The 2019 Monterey auctions will go down in the books as a downturn year. Sure, there were a few spectacular sales, but compared with recent years, almost all numbers were down. Yet for some of us who ply in the lower end of the market, all we have to say is, “Welcome back.” As far as the lowest sale for an American car at each auction venue, things actually looked pretty good — especially if you are a fan of Read More

Forced-Induction Foxes

When the Fox-body Ford Mustang arrived for 1979, Ford had to deal with a market that favored economy more than performance.

The OPEC oil crisis had unfolded just as the Mustang II was introduced for 1974. While that car sold well, it was lambasted for lackluster performance. The lukewarm 302-ci V8 just wasn’t endearing to those who recalled Mustangs with Ram Air 429s under the hood.

A new governmental mandate called CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) was also in the Read More

The Euro Pontiac

Pontiac tried to re-establish itself as GM’s performance brand in the 1980s. To help it steer that course, they built the 1984–88 Fiero. Yet there was one model that had all the buzz before and during the era of the Fiero and today is all but forgotten — the 6000 STE.

For American automakers, it was a new era: Quarter-mile times were irrelevant — the new goal was balanced power and handling like the Europeans.

So began the American auto Read More

The Hot Dakota

The Dakota was Chrysler’s reaction to the Ford Ranger and Chevy S-10. It was introduced for the 1987 model year and lasted until 2011, produced through three generations.

Generally a well-selling worker bee, the Dakota did make a splash with a convertible Sport version in 1989–91. In addition, since Carroll Shelby was working at Chrysler at the time, a Shelby Dakota hit the streets in 1989 with a 318 parked under the hood. Both the soft-top Sport and the Read More

Best of the Least

Various pundits have claimed that the market is starting to stagnate going into 2019. Auctions in the Phoenix area in January generally proved that to be correct. Yet we’re no strangers to low prices in this column. Every March/April issue, that’s where we boldly go.

So, once again, and back by popular demand, I present the bottom of the sales chart from this year’s Arizona auctions.

(On star ratings, ★★★★★ is best)

1963 Cadillac Series 75 8-Passenger Sedan

Gooding & Read More

Lincoln’s Q-Ship

Lincoln cars traditionally had unique engines, dating all the way back to inception by Henry Leland. But the purchase of the company by Henry Ford, refinement by Edsel Ford, and restructuring in the post-World War II era by Henry Ford II all led to an all-time great engine, sourced from the Blue Oval.

The revitalized Ford Motor Company of the 1950s expanded the use of common components in production. Lincoln’s first overhead-valve V8 engine in 1952 was also used in Read More