The Ones That Got Away

This month’s ACC Reader’s Forum question:

We’ve all been there: A great car comes up at a great price, but you just aren’t in a spot to do anything about it. Maybe it’s a lack of funds, maybe it’s a lack of parking places. Either way, the deal slips away, quickly becoming one of your car-person regrets.
Which car deals have you missed, and what were they?

Here’s how you responded:

It is 1974. I have returned from the Read More

One to Watch: 1970–73 Chevrolet Camaro Coupe

Early second-gen Camaros are often lumped in with the emission-starved, safety-bumper-clad late-’70s examples — but it was not until 1974 that GM added the giant Pinocchio-sized schnozz and the not-so-attractive Barracuda-esqe rear window to the F-body. Most buyers agree the earlier cars are a lot prettier.

Camaro buyers tend to love first-gen cars almost universally, but the ’70-to-’73 examples benefited from improvements to steering and suspension that made them more user-friendly on the street.

Prices for these early second-gens have Read More

Low Mileage Market

1982 Chevrolet Corvette coupe
Sold at $35,200
RM Auctions, Fort Lauderdale, FL, March 29, 2019, Lot 1016
VIN: 1G1AY8782C5105503

Why is it that low mileage can double or triple the selling price of any vintage car? Sure, a low-miles Mopar convertible with a manual transmission I understand. But that well-preserved Pinto with 4k miles for $35,000? Not so much.

Vehicles like this belong to, as I call it, the “What the Hell? Club.” The latest addition is Read More

Value Dive of the Tri-Five

1957 Chevrolet Bel Air 2-dr hard top
Sold at $56,000
RM Sotheby’s, Phoenix, AZ, January 18-19, 2018, Lot 219
VIN: VC570163461

One of the more controversial moments of this year’s ACC Insider’s Seminar at Barrett-Jackson came when Carl Bomstead called out Chevrolet’s Tri-Five cars as one of his two “Sell” picks in the current market.

There’s probably no more iconic classic American car than the 1957 Chevrolet, and for years, they’ve been safe bets in terms of Read More

Should You Buy a Cosworth Vega?

1975 Chevrolet Cosworth Vega Coupe
Sold at $13,750
Mecum, Phoenix, AZ, March 15, 2019, Lot F91
VIN: 1V77E5U215244

American car manufacturers applied the “no replacement for displacement” mantra when designing cars up until the 1970s, when the growing demand for fuel efficiency and government-required emission standards all but ended the life big-horsepower, big-displacement V8s.

Chevrolet adapted by releasing the uninspiring 80-ish hp Vega in 1971 — a low point in Chevy history that remained until 1975 with Read More

Turbo-Boosted Investment

1982 Pontiac Trans Am KITT
Sold at $66,000
Mecum Auctions, Harrisburg, PA, August 2–4, Lot S139

A few years back, I was reviewing cars at an auction for Sports Car Market with a couple of older friends when we happened upon a Knight Rider KITT conversion. Everyone else in my group laughed at it. I secretly wanted it.

Why? Because I was a kid in the 1980s, when David Hasselhoff was Michael Knight, and his jet-black Read More

A Collectible Crossover?

1984 AMC Eagle sedan
Sold at $3,850
Mecum Auctions, Chicago, IL, Oct. 25–27, 2018, Lot T35
VIN: 1FAFP42X1YF206398

People want cars that do it all. Part sedan, wagon, SUV and minivan. But with all those requirements, we have ended up with the endless amount of crossover-types clogging up our roads. They have it all, yet do nothing well — and most of them look like jelly beans left out in the sun.

When editor Pickering sent me Read More